Most attempts at weather-responsiveness in architecture incorporate a mechanical or electrical component or some other technical equipment in the structure. HygroSkin has none of that and instead uses the ability for responsiveness of the material itself, which in this case is wood.
The creators took into consideration the dimensional instability of the material when it comes to moisture content and designed a structure with a ‘skin’ that opens and closes in response to changes in the relative humidity of its surroundings. In effect, the pavilion has flower-shaped holes that open and close depending on the weather. The pavilion does not use any mechanical or electrical motors to achieve its weather-responsiveness ability. The structure itself is the machine.
The design and development of the HygroSkin can pave the way for architecture that uses the same concept to become responsive and interactive with its environment.
The project was commissioned by the FRAC Centre Orleans and will be exhibited at the ArchiLab 2013 – Naturalizing Architecture, which opened on September 14th.
View more images of the pavilion in the gallery.
Watch this video on the HygroSkin below.