Tell a friend
Email this page to a friend Close
Your name:
Friend's email:

Architect pushes the boundaries of advanced composite technology

MPavilion 2015 advanced composites technology designer Amanda Levete

Architect Amanda Levete’s high-tech advanced composites forest features translucent petals, 5m wide and just 3mm thick, that sway in the breeze on their carbon fibre stems. Photographer John Gollings

Award-winning British architect Amanda Levete designed the 2015 MPavilion, a high-tech, ultra-thin forest-like canopy that “sways” in the breeze, responding to the climate and landscape changes.

Architect Amanda Levete and MouldCAM director Toby Whitfield at the official opening of the 2015 MPavilion installation.

Architect Amanda Levete and MouldCAM director Toby Whitfield at the opening of the 2015 MPavilion in Melbourne.

Ms Levete, best known for her ground-breaking redesign of London’s Victoria and Albert Museum entrance and the sci-fi inspired media centre at Lord’s Cricket Ground, collaborated with Brisbane-based mouldCAM to realise her eccentric vision.

Standing in Melbourne’s Queen Victoria Gardens throughout the 2015/16 summer, the installation comprises a series of five-metre-wide translucent “petals” that light up at night and transform into amplifiers for public performances. Each petal is a mere three millimetres thick.

MouldCAM managing director Toby Whitfield and his partner, Jaime Marina, drew on their expertise in advanced composite materials to create the complex shapes and structures, integrating the lighting and sound technology.

“It’s a beautiful example of how new materials and technology can be taken outside their normal application to deliver unique results,” says Mr Whitfield. “It looks absolutely amazing.”

  • MPavilion is a unique architecture commission and design event for Melbourne, initiated by the Naomi Milgrom Foundation with support from City of Melbourne and the Victorian government.