March 26, 2014

TIMBER WAVE BY AMANDA LEVETE ARCHITECTS AT THE VICTORIA & ALBERT MUSEUM




TIMBER WAVE DESIGN BY AL_A 
AT THE VICTORIA & ALBERT MUSEUM 
LONDON DESIGN WEEK 2011




TIMBER WAVEDESIGN  BY AL_A AT THE VICTORIA & ALBERT MUSEUM 
STRUCTURAL ENGINEERING BY ARUP
LONDON DESIGN WEEK 2011
Award-winning architects Amanda Levete Architects and engineering firm Arup transformed the V&A Museum's Grand Entrance on Cromwell Road with the installation of a giant timber wave cascading down the steps. Built from oil-treated American red oak, Timber Wave was a three-dimensional latticework spiral, 12 metres in diameter, that employs construction techniques and materials normally used in furniture making to create a majestic three - storey - high structure.
'The brief was to respond in some way to the entrance of the V&A. For us it was about making very explicit the London Design Festival residency there,' says architect Amanda Levete of AL_A. 'We wanted to take the V&A out onto the street.'
Timber Wave does exactly that, creating an outdoor installation that is not only graceful, but technically ingenious. Working with engineers and timber specialists from Arup, AL_A's Timber Wave is a feat of precision construction.
'We have taken thin hardwood lamination techniquesmore usually used in furniture making and applied themat a different scale,' says Levete. 'The timber entrance is three-dimensional and asymmetric in form, and each timber piece is precisely calibrated for optimal structural performance and sculptural elegance.' It is the high strength-to weight ratio of American red oak, an
abundant US hardwood resource, that allows AL_A and Arup to create this delicate design in such a large scale. The wood has been treated with a biocide oil treatment that gives red oak the necessary protection to be used outside.
The recurring structures within Timber Wave reflect the repeated motif style that is very much part of the didactic tradition of the V&A's own historic facade. The Grand
Entrance in particular is vast, multilayered and very ornamental, and the design responds to this with a single dynamic form.
AL_A, winner of the V&A's recent international competition to design a new courtyard and underground extension, is the international design and architecture studio of Stirling Prize-winning architect Amanda Levete, a former partner of Future Systems, the practice widely regarded as 'laying down the agenda for architecture in the 21st century'. Future Systems achieved acclaim for seminal designs such as the Selfridges department store in Birmingham and the media centre at Lord's Cricket Ground - the world's first aluminium building. Amanda Levete is the V&A's architect of the moment. Whilst gearing up to build the new galleries at the V&A's Exhibition Road entrance,AL_A also present Timber Wave - an exciting and dramatic installation for Cromwell Road, bringing the London Design Festival's residency at the museum out onto the street in glorious celebration of the Festival.
http://www.londondesignfestival.com/2011-timber-wave-ala-va-2011























VICTORIA & ALBERT MUSEUM LONDON






VICTORIA & ALBERT MUSEUM' DIRECTOR MARTIN ROTH








VICTORIA & ALBERT MUSEUM DRAWING BY JAMES ALLEN 2008






VICTORIA & ALBERT MUSEUM' DIRECTOR MARTIN ROTH




VICTORIA & ALBERT MUSEUM LONDON










































AMANDA LEVETE
Amanda Levete has spent her career exploring the transformative potential of space through buildings and furniture pieces. Research underpins her work and she is intellectually driven by the challenge to find the idea that will unlock the potential in everything she designs. She works with diametrically opposed elements, the organic and the man-made, to create the unexpected and is recognised for her ability to bring visionary projects to fruition realising the ambitions of private and public sector clients.
Levete has received a number of international commissions, including a new gallery, courtyard and entrance for the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, a 1.5 million square foot luxury shopping mall and 6-star hotel in Bangkok already on site, and a cultural centre in Lisbon commissioned by EDP. She has forged long-term relationships with artists resulting in a joint project with Anish Kapoor for the Naples Subway. Her individual furniture pieces for Established & Sons have been called sublime, pushing materials and design to their limits. Through this relationship she has produced a number of defining pieces including Drift bench and the Around the Corner collection—each carved into a form by an advanced software program and then worked by hand.
Levete is a trustee of Artangel, the Young Foundation and the Arts Foundation. She is a regular TV and radio broadcaster and writes for a number of magazines. She trained at the Architectural Association and worked for Richard Rogers before joining Future Systems as a partner in 1989.
The formation of AL_A in 2009 realised Levete’s ambition to create a collaborative office following her partnership with the late Jan Kaplický at Future Systems where she completed award-winning and internationally recognised buildings including Selfridges department store in Birmingham and the Media Centre at Lord’s cricket ground which won the prestigious Stirling Prize.







ARUP
In 1946, philosopher and engineer Ove Arup set up his consulting engineering business in London. In the more than 60 years that have followed, the business has grown into an international consulting firm of unparalleled scope, owned in trust for its employees and using the business principles that Ove Arup first set out – and which he articulated for posterity in 1970 in his forward-looking ‘key speech
Right from the start, Arup was known for its close and exceptionally productive collaborations with leading and avant-garde architects. In its first two decades, the firm expanded rapidly, and earned a formidable reputation for devising advanced and economical solutions for buildings – a reputation it still enjoys today. 
By 1976, Arup’s reputation had become truly global with the completion of the Sydney Opera House. By this time, the firm had opened offices in Northern Europe, Southern Africa, South East Asia and Australia. Its breadth of expertise was already considerable: this ranged from offshore engineering, acoustics, facades, and specialist skills such as impact, blast, risk and seismic engineering, to relatively-niche areas such as designing transportation containers for nuclear waste.
The firm’s portfolio today is broad and wide-ranging. Many of the world’s most iconic sports stadia are Arup projects – such as Beijing’s Water Cube, the Singapore Sport's Hub and London Aquatics Centre.
Arup’s work goes beyond buildings and infrastructure, however. We collaborated with car manufacturers on the design of the SuperLight car, which uses considerably less energy than the petrol equivalent. Through our Operational Readiness, Activation and Transition (ORAT) service we help clients and other stakeholders plan for the seamless opening and operation of major facilities like airports and hospitals or for major events. Arup has also developed a range of proprietary computer modelling tools which it sells around the world, as well as innovations such as our SoundLab, an aural-realisation tool with which clients can hear subjectively how different design options perform acoustically – before they are actually built.
Arup now has over 92 offices across Europe, North America, Africa, Australasia and South East Asia. We employ more than 12,000 people globally.
http://www.arup.com/About_us/A_better_way/History.aspx