LifeObject Installation









Venice, Italy


Ben Bauer, Noy Lazarovich, Dr. Yael Eylat Van-Essen, Dr. Ido Bachelet

Venice 15th architecture biennale, Israeli pavilion



LifeObject is a material exploration of the relationships between the artificial and the natural in the future built environment. Its starting point is nature’s iconic model of a home - the bird’s nest; an assembly of weak and light found materials with no additional joints or glue, out of which emerges a free-form complex structure that is extremely light, robust and highly resilient.

Through an experimental process of scientific analysis, coding, material research and design, LifeObject transposes the resilient properties of a bird’s nest into an architectural form. From this material system, a new matter-structure emerges - a volumetric porous material that is lighter than feathers, a free-form structure that is stable yet flexible.

Synthetic, yet profoundly biologically inspired, the materiality of the LifeObject demonstrates common biological characteristics. Self organisation, adaptivity, variation, redundancy and low-energy synthesis present alternative design paradigms to the mechanistic architectural approach of strength and control, suggesting the interpretation of the LifeObject as a biological material.

Concepts of intelligence and movement are introduced, making the hybrid system of the LifeObject. Integrated ‘Breathing Cells’ bring it to life as they provide feedback to human presence, activating both structure and space. In a gentle non-mechanical movement, generated by the programed molecular change of advanced shape-memory material, the cells open up to reveal a gallery of biological wonders. Synchronically, liquid crystal surfaces change translucency to expose the natural outdoor setting.

The collection of on-going scientific researches, demonstrated as a biological “Cabinet de curiosités” in the pores, hints at a future integration in architecture that could make use of their inherent properties, forms and behaviours; these insinuate alternative modes for the visualisation of energy, sensing of the environment, material breakdown or the construction of structural networks.

Merging biology and architecture, LifeObject spans across all levels of animation, from the bio-inspired design of inanimate material, through dynamic inorganic material, to living material itself