UCLA Art|Sci Center - DESMA 9
Art, Science and Technology Lecture Series
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Art, Science and Technology Lecture Series
Gerald de Jong
Math + Art
"Algorithmic Tensegrity Design", 2021
Thursday, April 7th
 9:00 am PDT // 12:00 pm EDT
About Gerald De Jong

Gerald De Jong has a background in computer science and combinatorics from University of Waterloo, and has been a freelance software builder for decades in the Netherlands. He encountered the works of Fuller and Snelson early on, and over the years has developed several generations of an open source software model called Elastic Interval Geometry to enable playing with spatial geometry in general and tensegrity in particular.  The latest manifestation of EIG is available on the web and in the last two years Gerald has evolved the code into a tool to guide the actual building of physical tensegrity objects.  These new tensegrity structures exhibit a level of intricacy and complexity that was unaccessible to the previous generations who could not use computational design. He has built a number of tensegrity pieces based on his technique of prefabricated slack tension networks combined with compression bars that extend to tighten the structure.

Check out more of Gerald's work:
Gerald's website
DataMining Bodies
"Halo by Crane", 2021, Brass and Dyneema. Generated by the tenscript code (5,S92,b(12,S92,MA1),d(11,S92,MA1)). Prefabricated tension network pushed outwardly by floating brass bars. 
"Klein Bottle of Elastic Interval Membrane", 2022, A triangulated tension network and a triangulated compression network connected only locally, and sewn together globally into Klein Bottle topology. This shape is spontaneous and stable, initiated only with randomly located points connected correctly.
"Pretenst App for Construction", 2021. Online app built to facilitate turning designs into reality. Designs too complex to handle mentally become possible with build-by-numbers strategy.
"Pretenst Tensegrity Sphere 120 Struts", 2021. Brass and Dyneema. Prefabricated tension network with struts later inserted and lengthened.
"Pretenst Triped", 2021. Aluminum and Dyneema. The virtual model's straight outgrowths first bent into curved shape before freezing lengths for construction.
"Tensegrity Workshop for Grade 8, Rotterdam", 2022. Orchestrating the construction of a tensegrity structure with 20 kids in groups of 4.
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