WORKSHOP 1 – Composite Bamboo and Concrete Shell Structures

This workshop exposes students to the physical act of making in architecture through dynamic structural logics and material testing. The objective is to prototype new kinds of shell structures using concrete as casting material and to engage more closely with the material’s unique fluidity, pressure, and weight. Composite formwork’s advantages, including increased responsiveness to liquid material over traditional timber planking formwork is apparent. Learning from seminal precedents of thin shell concrete structures, such as those by Torroja, Candela, Isler, Dieste, Nervi and others, the workshop aims to innovate upon composite formwork techniques.

The first stage of the workshop will teach a variety of form-finding techniques for shell structure design from computational processes, structural simulations, geometrical descriptions, and analogue formwork devices. Through trial-and-error experiments, students will test not only the gravitational limits of different materials but also different forces influence material performance. In the second stage, initial research findings will be applied in a collective design proposal for the construction of a full-scale and site-specific installation. The final project will use local and low-cost materials, such as bamboo, textiles and cable-net, as reinforcing and formwork for composite concrete shell structures in order to translate emerging geometries to traditional building techniques.


  • Dr. Jerry Hsiao, Fengchia University, Taichung, Taiwan
  • Olivier Ottevaere, Double (o) Studio, The University of Hong Kong Department of Architecture
  • Richard Hsu, Tongji University
  • Tom Verebes, Turenscape Academy
  • Xiong Ying, Turenscape Academy


Olivier Ottevaere (Assistant Professor), The University of Hong Kong

Olivier Ottevaere (Assistant Professor), The University of Hong Kong
Olivier Ottevaere (Visiting Professor), EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland

Start Time

9:30 am

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Finish Time

6:30 pm

Sunday, November 5, 2017



Event Participants