Archive for Explorations


Proposal(s) and Speculation(s) | Click on image

080308_MF | RecursiveGrowth Series v3.0

RECURSIVE SERIES (update 080308)

SIDE_TRACK ON RECURSION: “Droste effect” (
The Droste effect is a Dutch term for a specific kind of recursive picture[1], one that in heraldry is termed mise en abyme. An image exhibiting the Droste effect depicts a smaller version of itself in a place where a similar picture would realistically be expected to appear. This smaller version then depicts an even smaller version of itself in the same place, and so on. Only in theory could this go on forever, practically it continues only as long as the resolution of the picture allows, which is relatively short, since each iteration exponentially reduces the picture’s size. It is a visual example of a strange loop, a self-referential system.

I am just back from the smartgeometry conference 2008 hosted within the Coop Himmelblau BMW building in Munich (Germany) – even more than during the last year event in New York the historical consensus within the founding partner of the event on the specific platform sponsoring the event is definitively re-questioned – hopefully that artificially maintained monopole (clearly understood as a funding issue) will shift in the next venue toward a much larger agenda on the use of computation within the field of architecture – anyway many interesting work presented – sustainability and solar gain are definitively the hot topics…

to all the many people I have met through the conference keep in touch

080219_MF | RecursiveGrowth Series v2.0

First images of a second series based on Recursion – here the major difference in morpholgy is due to tests for future connexions panels to panels – each panel is now sharing an entire edge with its neighbor but also with its previous generation…
Also the recursive subdivision isn’t uniform anymore through the entire aggregate…

080217_MF | RecursiveGrowth Series v1.0


BIOmorphic” it first became (or eventually came back for the one who believes in trend periodicity…)

“Architectural theory” directly responded early 2000 by the concept of “BIOmimetism” as the hot topic for architects surfing on the what’s next weave after the “BIOmimicry” which emerged in parallel from the animation software at the end of the nineties… yes it does make sense to look “how nature would solved a problem” rather than looking at nature itself – though each of us had to re-discovered that yes “in nature form is free and structure is expensive“… and therefore -except if your extreme diva character allows you to afford sometimes absurd ways of manufacturing- one might rather look at post modernism as the human Nature way of saving on form (though btw also often wasting on structure via demonstrative cantilevers)…

Ecologies” -which emerged nearly five years ago within the architectural discourse- seems to be still the current natural evolution of the Bio(x) phenomenon: yes there should be some kind of balance since so many different feedbacks can be input as parameters onto what is often simply pictured as a gigantic “design process dash board” aiming toward performances – it is somehow making sense, or eventually once more it should make sense…

This Bio(x) history has no intention to be accurate or exhaustive – it can definitively be seen as a very cliche summary – though here required as frame work or axiom of that specific series…


THEVERYMANY “series” have yet no pretention to be smart as biomimetism or aiming toward new ecologies… there are based on a very simple and straight forward oldschool empiric lab approach trying first to understand existing mathematical/geometrical models as explicit and ordered sets of instruction, learn to replicate them through coding and finally within that process strategize in terms of design…

That last step often result in compromising the integrity of the original model – I am calling that approach “Modelism” as a derivate from “building model” where you’re first trying to understand the kit of parts and then reassemble it to match the model – THERYMANY “series” are based on such process except that it is somehow like building blind or simply without the schematic where the emergent tolerances are distinguishing the result as “design” from its diagram…

Though yes – as some of those models are directly coming from early ways trying to replicate natural phenomenon – a direct resemblance to nature often emerge through the resultant form and structures…

this can sometimes reveal itself quite tricky looking at the current trend of Voronoi mimicry, soon it will replace the post modern box as standard! though at least for once intricate detailing about it and a slight notion of scale could transform it into architecture rather than simply inhabitable diagrams… sorry for such sarcasm as THEVERYMANY has actively collaborate to its success but as sort of young Jedi constantly trying to master new techniques within the field, I am afraid many more prototypical models will than unfortunately follow such downfall…

THEVERYMANY « Series » – “une histoire a suivre…”

RECURSION in mathematics and computer science, is a method of defining functions in which the function being defined is applied within its own definition. The term is also used more generally to describe a process of repeating objects in a self-similar way. For instance, when the surfaces of two mirrors are almost parallel with each other the nested images that occur are a form of recursion. (ie wikipedia),

RECURSIVEGROWTH – Generation 1 to 7 – is based on a coming back to “Recursion” (ie previous tests on subdivision, etc…) as the ultimo model of periodicity – why periodicity after many non-linear approaches? simple: the last series based on aperiodic tilling or replication were used because of high repetition within its model – therefore whenever one is approaching the concept of repetition its ultimo and endless quest is maximizing it…

periodicity for its advantages: easy nesting because exact same elements, also therefore easy nomenclature, ornamentation can be more intricate as repetitive, etc…

material system: flat panels – 4 types – also high repetition within the connections
to be continued…

070907_MF | OneLineMoreOrLess…

Both images are generated using the exact same code, nearly the same inputs – only one line of code less for the seconde one! dramatic consequences for such little change… it sounds like the principle of chaos theory…

070824_MF | NurbsField v2.0

Interesting results for me as the latest outputs are very similar than a previous work from me – within “Play” a DRL group back in 2003; I was there experimenting with particles dynamics within 3dsMax; it took adges on a pentium 2 or 3 to calculate each frames! I left for the Christmas break for 12 days and when I came back my computer was still calulating frames…
Here within rhinoscript it is still not “Fast” but now I do understand the math behind the paramters of those 3dsMax “space warp”…

070817_MF | NurbsField v1.0



for every pt: sum of attractions = direction; sum of directions in time = path
the sum of paths = nurbsfield; fast track test…

070808_MF | XYc (revisited)

while trying to understand several cases still triggering some important issues on a recurent research about “tayloring nurbs surfaces into non-trinagulated panels”, theverymany has been revisiting an old project: “XYc” (as X or Y components projected flat onto a planes normal to the surface…)

070502_MF | Tessellation / Flat_Panels v3.0

Some sort of panels “stability” mapping based on the number of connexions for each panels toits neighbours:
– GREEN: connexion to at least three neighbours
– YELLOW: connexion to two neighbours
– RED: connexion to one single neighbour

070419_MF | Tessellation / Flat Panels v.02


A superstructure is an extension of an existing structure or baseline. (…) The word itself is a combination of super (Latin for above, in addition) and structure (also from Latin meaning to build, to heap up). (ie

Here, the routine is plotting first flat components onto the host surface to create a non air tight skin system which serves as “basline” for a secondary searching algorythm looking for intersection points as assembly nodes for a extra structure or superstructure…

Emergent properties:
1/ all the components are intersecting with one neighbour at least which allows them to be connected via that point without requiring extra complex bridging through gaps and difference between the panels of heights, angles, ect… though some sort of “continuity check” algorythm will be required in order to identify larger autonomous clusters which wouldn’t be connected to the whole and therefore structurally failling…
2/ the resultant skeletal system – driven from a simple neighbourhood condition and linking all the connexion nodes with the inputed point set – is looking very similar to leafs structures… emergent biomimetism?

070417_MF | Tessellation / Flat Panels v.01

FITNESS CRITERIA is probably where – within any morphogenetic or form finding processes – “subjectivity” is the most “exposed”… recent trends are pushing back towards the return of SUSTAINABILITY as the latest alibi for form: data set extracted from environmental analysis software package are directly – or yet still often via old school Excel sheets – feeding back parametric models… or facades aperature systems are designed according to optimization after to arrays of vectors simulating precise rays of light, etc… fair enough as far as sustainability is probably the most current anti-polemic marketing tool whenever politic is involved… though more worrying in certain case where it becomes an other escapism root to the designer responsability of decision making…

“PROBLEM CARING” as design tool versus “PROBLEM SOLVING” as optimization tool…

As any young practice interested in “depth-less spaces” by introducing continuity of surfaces – most often resulting in “complex shapes/forms/ornementations/etc… – I’ve very early on been introduced to VALUE ENGINEERING and like any constraints V.E. can be turned at your advantage in terms of design tool: planar within curved?

“In computer science, COMPUTATIONAL GEOMETRY is the study of algorithms to solve problems stated in terms of geometry.” (ie Wikipedia)

Displayed is a further study in progress onto TESSELATION of double curved nurbs surfaces with FLAT components (without calling triangulation).
Here the most important design hypothesis was for the component to be non homogenous and therefore shouldn’t have the same number of verticies: from 3 to 7-8… also the emergent propriety of the used algorythm is to avoid any sharp angle (cost control + tolerance issue)
also the assembly is yet mot packed – and therefore not air tight – all the the component are within a certain tolerance non overlapping.

Assemblies (step 001): within non linear algorythm – resulting here in non ordered systems – intersection points can be used as sampling test for tangencies:
IF a point is shared by the boundaries of two panels THEN they are neighbours…

061228_MF | Flat Quad Panels on Nurbs Surfaces

Speculation onto temporary structures within low budget…
Problematic: descriptive geometry of complex curvature with flat panels…
Test protocol: plot within specific sequence (even numbers) flat planes, look at neighbors nearest points, and describe components via nurbs crv and planar srf…
Parameters: density, sequences, components…
Challenge: connexions has to be addressed as tolerance…
In process…

Tips’n tricks: very similar start as David Rutten code plotting flat planes onto nurbs surfaces…

Call WhoFramedTheSurface()
Sub WhoFramedTheSurface()
Dim idSurface : idSurface = Rhino.GetObject(“Surface to frame”, 8, True, True)
If IsNull(idSurface) Then Exit Sub

Dim intCount : intCount = Rhino.GetInteger(“Number of iterations per direction”, 20, 2)
If IsNull(intCount) Then Exit Sub

Dim uDomain : uDomain = Rhino.SurfaceDomain(idSurface, 0)
Dim vDomain : vDomain = Rhino.SurfaceDomain(idSurface, 1)
Dim uStep : uStep = (uDomain(1) – uDomain(0)) / intCount
Dim vStep : vStep = (vDomain(1) – vDomain(0)) / intCount

Dim u, v
Dim pt
Dim srfFrame

Call Rhino.EnableRedraw(False)
For u = uDomain(0) To uDomain(1) Step uStep
For v = vdomain(0) To vDomain(1) Step vStep
pt = Rhino.EvaluateSurface(idSurface, Array(u, v))

If Rhino.Distance(pt, Rhino.BrepClosestPoint(idSurface, pt)(0)) < 0.1 Then
srfFrame = Rhino.SurfaceFrame(idSurface, Array(u, v))
Call Rhino.AddPlaneSurface(srfFrame(0), _
Rhino.PointAdd(srfFrame(0), srfFrame(1)), _
Rhino.PointAdd(srfFrame(0), srfFrame(2)))
End If
Call Rhino.EnableRedraw(True)
End Sub

Enjoy and custom…


060918_MF | “Mapping for Tailoring” WIP

the “Mapping for Tailoring” project “work in progress”; “RETROFUTURISM” by accident?
– A return to, and an enthusiasm for, the depictions of the future produced in the first half of the 20th century, which often were based on ideas that are now dated and a great deal of imagination and speculation.
– An ideology combining retrograde cultural and economic views with techno-utopianism.
(ie Wikipedia)

A TAILOR is a person whose occupation is to sew menswear style jackets and the skirts or trousers that go with them.
The term refers to a set of specific hand and machine sewing techniques and pressing techniques that are unique to the construction of traditional jackets.
In some documents, “tailor” means “adjust”, “tailoring” – “adjustment”

A TAILOR makes custom menswear-style jackets and the skirts or trousers that go with them, for men or women.
An Alterations Specialist, or ALTERATIONIST adjusts the fit of completed garments, usually ready-to-wear, or restyles them. Note that while all tailors can do alterations, by no means can all alterationists do tailoring.
PATTERNMAKERS flat draft the shapes and sizes of the numerous pieces of a garment by hand using paper and measuring tools or by computer using AutoCAD based software, or by draping muslin on a dressform. The resulting pattern pieces must comprise the intended design of the garment and they must fit the intended wearer.
(ie Wikipedia)

Routine – inProgress:
– 3d scan of the human body replace for the purpose of the experimentbya mesh 3d model of a man body (extracted from Poser)
– extract contours (rhino command)
– loft in order to get a nurbs surface
– plot pts according to a stepped analyse of the inclinaison of the nurbs srf (rhinoscript)
– link those pts via a “nearest neighbour” algorythm (rhinoscript developped with the help of David Rutten; thx David)
– split of the human geometry according to those non-uniform contour lines

– to be continued…

060707_MF | DigitalMapping & FashionDesign

‘ ———————————————————————————
LOG_01 : theverymany / marc fornes will be leaving London to rellocate in New York early October. If interested in the work of theverymany or in the paradigm of scripted technics applied to design purposes, please do not hesitate to contact him: marcfornesAThotmailDOTcom
‘ ———————————————————————————

Log_02 : theverymany is currently looking – in collaboration with the members of YME- at scripted ways of mapping the body in order to taylor its complex surface…
Here the code is evaluating -via a step process- a nurbs surface, plotting points according to a specified angle to the vertical and drawing circles (oriented to the normal) with a radius related to its nearest neighbour… (code will follow)
YME ( is a design research collaboration of young architects interested in the applications of mathematics in design and fabrication (mostly via “Mathematica”, a software developped by Steven Wolfram).
‘ ———————————————————————————
Log_03: the work of theverymany (marc fornes, vincent nowak & claudia corcilius) exhibited for the Royale Academie (London,UK) will be published in next book of Peter Cook (Archigram) called ‘Drawings’ as part of the Wiley Primer Series
‘ ———————————————————————————
Log_04: theverymany has been invited for an exhibition in December in Marseille (France), featuring the work of EZCT, Biothing (Alisa Andrasek), dECOi(Mark Goulthorpe), Evan Douglis, Andrew Kudless (, YME,…
‘ ———————————————————————————

060820_MF | thoughtsOntoDesignTests…

TEST (or testing)
1. Test and experiment form parts of the scientific method, to verify or falsify an expectation with an observation.
2. Quality control testing, in manufacturing, a procedure designed to test the functionality of a product under potentially harmful conditions

Be realistic – demand the impossible!” – Soyez réalistes, demandez l’impossible! – Anonymous graffiti, Paris 1968
COLLAGE (From the French, coller, to stick) is regarded as a work of visual arts made from an assemblage of different forms, thus creating a new whole. This technique made its first appearance in the early 20th century as a groundbreaking novelty, however with the passing of time it’s become ubiquitous.

In the field of evaluation, there is some degree of disagreement in the distinctions often made between the terms ‘evaluation’ and ‘assessment.’ Some practitioners would consider these terms to be interchangeable, while others contend that evaluation is broader than assessment and involves making judgments about the merit or worth of something (an evaluand) or someone (an evaluee). When such a distinction is made, ‘assessment’ is said to primarily involve characterizations – objective descriptions, while ‘evaluation’ is said to involve characterizations and appraisals – determinations of merit and/or worth. Merit involves judgments about generalized value. Worth involves judgments about instrumental value. For example, a history and a mathematics teacher may have equal merit in terms of mastery of their respective disciplines, but the math teacher may have greater worth because of the higher demand and lower supply of qualified mathematics teachers. A further degree of complexity is introduced to this argument when working in different languages, where the terms ‘evaluation’ and ‘assessment’ may be variously translated, with terms being used that convey differing connotations related to conducting characterizations and appraisals.

I take my desires for reality because I believe in the reality of my desires” – Anonymous graffiti, Paris, 1968

Beneath the paving stones – the beach!” – Sous les pavés, la plage! – Anonymous graffiti, Paris 1968

A RESULT is the final consequence of a sequence of actions or events (broadly incidents and accidents) expressed qualitatively or quantitatively, being a loss, injury, disadvantage, advantage, gain, victory or simply a value. There may be a range of possible outcomes associated with an event possibly depending on the point of view, historical distance or relevance.

(i.e wikipedia)

060813_MF | VoronoiSkeleton…


A SELF-SIMILAR object is exactly or approximately similar to a part of itself, i.e., the whole has the same shape as one or more of the parts. A curve is said to be self-similar if, for every piece of the curve, there is a smaller piece that is similar to it. For instance, a side of the Koch snowflake is self-similar; it can be divided into two halves, each of which is similar to the whole.

Many objects in the real world, such as coastlines, are statistically self-similar: parts of them show the same statistical properties at many scales. Self-similarity is a typical property of fractals.

It also has important consequences for the design of computer networks, as typical network traffic has self-similar properties. For example, in telecommunications traffic engineering, packet switched data traffic patterns seem to be statistically self-similar. This property means that simple models using a Poisson distribution are inaccurate, and networks designed without taking self-similarity into account are likely to function in unexpected ways.


the overall skeleton is an assembly of self-similar cells: those cells are all different but all similar; all the cell’s boundaries are the result of the overall split of an host surface based on a VORNOI tesselation algorythm; their geometries have the same genotype: each is created with a developable surface between the exact polyline boundary and its nurbs approximation.

the rhinoscript process is naming and exporting each cell component as a .3ds (thks to David) file which is than open into a PEPEKURA a little origami application ( which unfold it with laps; an obvious simplifaication of the developable surface has to be done!!!
‘ fileToExportComponents
‘Dim Folder, FileName, sPath
”Folder = Rhino.BrowseForFolder(, “Base folder for multi-export”, “Multi export”)
”FileName = Rhino.StringBox(“File name basis”, “Export_01”, “Multi export”)
‘ //////////////////////////////////////////////////////
‘Rhino.SelectObjects strLoftSrf
”sPath = Folder & FileName & “_” & i & “.3ds”
‘sPath = “E:\RHINOSCRIPTING60804_Voronoi_M_Corean60810_Export_Automaton\” & “Export_05” & “_” & i & “.3ds”
‘Rhino.Command “-_Export ” & Chr(34) & sPath & Chr(34) & ” Enter”
” low mesh
”Rhino.Command “-_Export ” & Chr(34) & sPath & Chr(34) & ” _DetailOptions _AdvancedOptions _Angle=20 _MaxEdgeLength=3 _Enter _PackTextures=Yes _Refine=Yes _Enter”
‘ //////////////////////////////////////////////////////

060801_MF | onthewayto L-Sytems

going from unifrom growing generation to an alphabet based one…

strCase = Fix(random(2,4))
Select Case CStr(strCase)
Case 2 …
Case 3 …
Case 4 …
End Select

L-SYSTEMS (i.e. Wikipedia)

“The recursive nature of the L-system rules leads to self-similarity and thereby fractal-like forms which are easy to describe with an L-system. Plant models and naturally-looking organic forms are similarly easy to define, as by increasing the recursion level the form slowly ‘grows’ and becomes more complex.

L-system grammars are very similar to the semi-Thue grammar (see Chomsky hierarchy). L-systems are now commonly known as parametric L systems, defined as a tuple

G = {V, S, ω, P},


* V (the alphabet) is a set of symbols containing elements that can be replaced (variables)
* S is a set of symbols containing elements that remain fixed (constants)
* ω (start, axiom or initiator) is a string of symbols from V defining the initial state of the system
* P is a set of rules or productions defining the way variables can be replaced with combinations of constants and other variables. A production consists of two strings – the predecessor and the successor.

The rules of the L-system grammar are applied iteratively starting from the initial state.

An L-system is context-free if each production rule refers only to an individual symbol and not to its neighbours. If a rule depends not only on a single symbol but also on its neighbours, it is termed a context-sensitive L-system.

If there is exactly one production for each symbol, then the L-system is said to be deterministic (a deterministic context-free L-system is popularly called a D0L-system). If there are several, and each is chosen with a certain probability during each iteration, then it is a stochastic L-system.

060626_MF | GrowingExp…


The term PARTICLE SYSTEM refers to a computer graphics technique to simulate certain fuzzy phenomena, which are otherwise very hard to reproduce with conventional rendering techniques to produce realistic game physics. Examples of such phenomena which are commonly done with particle systems include fire, explosions, smoke, flowing water, sparks, falling leaves, clouds, fog, snow, dust, meteor tails, or abstract visual effects like glowy trails, etc.


Typically the particle system’s position in 3D space or motion therein is controlled by what is called the emitter.

The emitter is mainly characterized by a set of particle behavior parameters and a position in 3D space. The particle behavior parameters might include spawning rate (how many particles are generated per unit of time), particle initial velocity vector (i.e. which way will it go when it is emitted), particle life (how much time does each individual particle live before being extinguished), particle color and variations throughout its life, and many more. It is common for all or most of these parameters to be fuzzy, in the sense that instead of absolute values, some central value and allowable random variation is specified.

A typical particle system update loop (which is performed for each frame of animation) can be separated into two distinct stages, the parameter update/simulation stage and the rendering stage.


During the simulation stage, the amount of new particles that must be created is calculated based on spawning rates and interval between updates, and each of them is spawned in a specific position in 3D space based on emitter position and spawning area specified. Also each of the particle’s parameters, like velocity, color, life, etc, are initialized based on the emitter’s parameters. Then all the existing particles are checked to see if they have exceeded their lifetime, in which case they are removed from the simulation. Otherwise their position and other characteristics are modified based on some sort of physical simulation, which can be as simple as adding the velocity to the current position, and maybe accounting for friction by modulating the velocity, or as complicated as performing physically-accurate trajectory calculations taking into account external forces. Also it is common to perform some sort of collision checking with specified 3D objects in order to make the particles bounce off obstacles in the environment. However particle-particle collisions are rarely used, as they are computationally expensive and not really useful for most of the simulations.

A particle system has its own rules that are applied to every particle. Often these rules involve interpolating values over the lifetime of a particle. For example, many systems have particles fade out to nothingness by interpolating the particle’s alpha value (opacity) during the lifetime of the particle.


After the update is complete, each particle is rendered usually in the form of a textured billboarded quad (i.e. a quadrilateral that is always facing the viewer). However, this is not necessary, the particle may be rendered as just a single pixel in small resolution/limited processing power environments, or even as a metaball in off-line rendering (isosurfaces computed from particle-metaballs make quite convincing liquid surfaces). Finally 3D meshes can also be used to render the particles.

theverymany within particles dynamics…

060610_MF | GrowingGrowingGrowing…

frame_00 Growing_leafs_system acting as shadows maker for public bench

As installation for public park with discreet light&sound devices

“Growing on form…”

Proposal : Leafs in mats of Carbon&Armide pre-preg with Epoxy resin…
Each leaf from one generation can be repetitive for incremental decrease of cost via reuse of tooling…

060602_MF | GrowingProcess…

Surfaces as part of the component function…
Fleurettes, fleurettes…

Branching structure installation set inspired from the french movie:
“Le Maire, L’arbre et la Mediatheque” directed by Eric Rohmer, 1993

We’ve just tragically lost our socialist mayor in Pau…
The site on the border of a park became politically too problematique…
They had to stop our project of Mediatheque…

Within the architectural world, the history and theory branch has always been arguing about too literal translation. Building the diagram or understanding it as conceptual model in order to extrapolate in terms of design?
Within a bottom up approach, building a performative model of tree, where will that going to lead us?

Growing directions represented as vector field…

Growing, where will that go?

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