Date of Degree
MA (Master of Arts)
The need to separate living quarters, increase privacy and compartmentalize one's surroundings is a major characteristic of human nature. Walls and permanent architectural structures serve this purpose well, but lack flexibility. Office cubicles offer some flexibility thanks to their relative ease of assembly and grid-like layout, but they rarely address aesthetics. My research explores the flexibility of a unique surface that serves as a free-standing wall or partition. Relying on the purest of geometric shapes -circles, arcs and right angle polygons- I've composed a series of panels cut from a flat sheet of raw material that, when assembled, have a spring-like flexibility that can be extended, flattened, stacked and curved to create an upright surface that is vertically rigid. This research utilizes advanced design tools ranging from 3D computer modeling software to rapid prototyped miniature models to laser CNC machine fabrication. Along with the high technology used to create and test these units, a vast library of sustainable materials was referenced and appended in order to assure the cleanest and most sustainable avenues of production. And to further increase the sustainability of this design concept, I was able to configure the panel shapes to nest perfectly together reducing nearly all wasted cutting material.
Copyright 2011 Jared Van Williams
Williams, Jared Van. "The repetition of identical interlocking plastic panels to construct a collapsible and flexible mesh for interior and product design applications." Master's thesis, University of Iowa, 2011.