Architecture and Design, (kind of) REthought

CosmoCaixa MicroLife Exhibition

SMD was contacted to develop a parametric system for a design that Medio Design had for Expografic about the design of the exhibition space of Microlife exhibition for CosmoCaixa Madrid. As Expografic states, “The exhibition features the universe of the small beyond what eyes can see” with images and videos of photographer Rubén Duro. Our part in the whole project was to design and fabricate the tables and supports for the samples, petri dishes and microscopes that will allow the visitor to interact with the nano scale world.

The design consisted in a series of 12 different tables that will had to accommodate petri dishes, samples, microscopes and big screens. The design of the tables were quite free form shapes and with a series of slabs that give thickness and a rounded shape to the contours.

For developing the tables, we generated a Grasshopper definition that converts the free-form outline to a full 3D model of the table. As a result, you get the contours you can use to cut the parts of the table, and also the definition nests and labels all the pieces that conform the different slabs.

The material used for the slabs sections is alucobond (aluminum sandwich) which was cut with the Multicam CNC Milling Machine. As you can see in the image, the pieces are nested to optimize material and machining times. The upper part of the table that need to glow on dark was made with translucent acrylic.

Once all parts are cut, the assembly of each of the tables is a rather simple task, every piece is labelled and has a unique position.

As a result, the tables look astonishing in the exhibition space, thanks to the thickness of the element and the capacity of emit light.

More info about the exhibition can be found on the Press section of Obra Social “La Caixa” website.

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