Fluid Forms at ETH Zurich

Full of Colors and Surprises

John Hill
12. March 2024
Photo: Andrei Jipa

Designed and fabricated by Ioanna Mitropoulou, a doctoral researcher at ETH Zurich's Digital Building Technologies, Fluid Forms is a two-meter-tall installation with ambitions much grander than its size. The piece looks monolithic, but as the short film reveals, it is made up of smaller 3D-printed parts — exactly 40 pieces screwed together for disassembly and recycling. Rather than typical planar printing, in which layers are built up horizontally, the robots in the DBT lab printed the shells using non-planar print paths that are aligned to its principal curvature directions. This approach, per Mitropoulou, “opens new horizons for constructing large-scale lightweight structures in architecture with unprecedented precision and material economy.”

Fluid Forms assembly (Photo: Dominik Vogel)
Project: Fluid Forms, Digital Building Technologies, ETH Zurich
Design and Fabrication: Ioanna Mitropoulou
Advisors: Prof. Benjamin Dillenburger, Prof. Olga Diamanti, Prof. Amir Vaxman
Technical Support: Tobias Hartmann, Philippe Fleischmann, Matthias Leschok
Fluid Forms finished (Photo: Dominik Vogel)

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