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Register/Submit: Monday, June 30, 2014

Plasticity, the quality of being able to be made into different shapes, to be molded or altered, is a quality that is pervasive in contemporary design. This idea can manifest as a material providing haptic experience or as a concept defining relational interaction with performative consequence. From advanced applications of arrested fluid materials to assemblies of components influenced by forces internal and external to a system, the definition of plasticity engages a broad spectrum in the lexicon of contemporary design.

Plasticity extends beyond the design disciplines into biologics where organisms with the same genotype vary in developmental pattern, in phenotype, or in behavior according to varying environmental conditions. This competition seeks to frame this concept within an architectural proposal that foregrounds the application of parametric design and digital fabrication with a broad range of possible outcomes. Casting, forming, 3D printing, fluid assemblies of folded 2D profiles and even activated networks of robotic components are techniques to consider as potential building components in an architecture of plasticity.  New speculative initiatives with an eye toward feasibility are encouraged to enter along with ongoing design research that seeks further refinement through the prototyping process we offer in this unique competition.

This two round competition will yield four finalists in the first phase that will be awarded a stipend to further develop and exhibit their work at the 2014 ACADIA Design Agency conference for the final jury.  A winner will be awarded the opportunity to prototype their design into a full scale, free standing interior assembly with material support and expertise from a leading fabricator and consulting engineer.  The final installation will be sited in the University of Houston College of Architecture atrium at the 2015 TEX-FAB event.


First Round:
Benjamin Ball (Ball Nogues Studio)
Alvin Huang (Synthesis Design, ACADIA conference co-chair)
Virginia San Fratello (Rael San Fratello)
Ken Tracy and Christine Yogiaman (yo_cy, APPLIED competition winners)
Joshua Zabel (Kreysler & Associates)
Craig Dykers (Snøhetta)
Jeanne Gang (Studio Gang Architects)
Bill Kreysler (Kreysler & Associates)
Greg Lynn, (Greg Lynn Form)
Roland Snooks (kokkugia, Studio Roland Snooks)

February 2014        Competition Launch
June 29, 2014        Deadline for Registration and 1st round Submissions
July 14, 2014        Finalists announced
October 3, 2014    Finalist submission and 2nd round jury
October 20-26, 2014    Finalists exhibition and public announcement of winner at ACADIA 2014 Design Agency Conference in Los Angeles hosted by USC
Spring 2015         Exhibition at TEX-FAB 2015 in Houston

There is registration fee of $100 per entry, per team paid upon registration through the link to point of sale on the TEX-FAB website.  Registration is open up until the submission deadline.  There will be no refund of registration fee for failure to submit by the deadline.

There is no specific material or fabrication requirements for the submissions, as we are encouraging the designers to develop this competition to further ongoing research or propose a speculative project.  While the theme suggests the material exploration of polymers from composites to sheet materials, that is not required by the call or the interpretation of the brief. You are encouraged to develop and propose a specific fabrication method based on your research, thus you must specify techniques and materials used in the proposal for the competition entry.

In the first stage a total of 4 selections that will be awarded a $1000 stipend to further develop their project in as a scalar model or prototypes. For the second stage, the new work with revised boards will be submitted by October 3rd for judging and exhibited at ACADIA 2014 in Los Angeles. An additional shipping stipend of $250 will be provided and the designers must provide their own secure packaging and arrange shipping logistics.  TEX-FAB will announce a winner determined with the second round jury made public during the conference. At that time the winning proposal will be developed for a full-scale installation with a nationally recognized fabricator, TEX-FAB and other consultants. In total the winning project will be awarded over $12,000 in value of design optimization services, fabrication, material and logistical support in realizing the proposal. In addition to building the proposal the winner will be paid a $1,000 stipend for travel and exhibited in Houston.

This is a digital competition; hard copy proposals will not be accepted. All entries are to be submitted via online service on/or before midnight June 29, 2012 Central Standard Time (23:59 CST).

The language of the competition is English. Entries are encouraged to include all necessary information to clearly explain the proposal. The choice of the graphic representation is completely open to the entry team.

Plasticity is open to all architects, artists, designers whether student or professional without limit to country or nationality. Team collaboration is permitted and encouraged. Participants may enter more than once as either individuals or in a team.

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