• Bloom
    Oliver Hess/Jenna Didier
    Materials & Applications, Los Angeles
    Nov 19, 2011 to Aug 25, 2012
    Matthew Melnyk, Doris Sung & Ingalill Wahlroos-Ritter

Sung in collaboration with Wahlroos-Ritter and Melnyk, Bloom, view from rear, Los Angeles. Photo: Brandon Shigeta.

Challenging the traditional presumption that building skins should be static and inanimate, Bloom examines the replacement of this convention with one that sees the prosthetic layer between man and his environment as a more responsive and active skin, in this case, thermally. Using a thermobimetal (TBM), a heat-sensitive smart material, building surfaces can self-ventilate, shade, and dramatically reduce their dependency on mechanical air conditioning and, ultimately, decrease their carbon footprint. TBM is a lamination of two metals with different thermal expansion coefficients that curl when heated and return to their original shape when cooled. Bloom is an outdoor installation that demonstrates the capacity of TBM in an architectural application. The final product is a canopy that strategically shrivels as it tracks the sun and changes shape as it shades the outdoor gallery space of Materials & Applications in Los Angeles.

Matthew Melnyk received his BS in civil and environmental engineering in 1999 and his MS in structural engineering and mechanics of materials in 2002, both from the University of California, Berkeley. He began his professional career in New York, where he first worked on high-rise and commercial construction with Thornton-Tomassetti Engineers and later had opportunity to work on sports venues, cultural centers, and performing arts centers with Buro Happold. In 2006, he moved to Los Angeles as a founding member of Buro Happold's Los Angeles office. He has lectured at numerous schools and universities including Columbia University; the University of California, Los Angeles;  the University of Southern California; and the University of Pennsylvania. From 2006 to 2010, he held a full-time faculty position in applied studies at the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc). In 2010, he founded NOUS Engineering with a partner in London to provide sophisticated technical solutions to designers employing leading-edge modeling and fabrication technologies, advanced materials, and experimental structural systems.

Doris Sung received her BA from Princeton University and her MArch from Columbia University. She has taught at the University of Southern California, SCI-Arc, the University of Colorado, and the Catholic University of America. In 1999, she opened her office, dO\Su Studio Architecture, and soon received many AIA, ACSA, and ASID awards for her work, including the prestigious AIA Young Designer of the Year Award in 2001. She has lectured, exhibited, and juried at various schools and galleries internationally, including Yale, Columbia, Rice, and Yonsei Universities.

Ingalill Wahlroos-Ritter received her MArch from the University of California, Los Angeles, and is currently chair of the undergraduate Architecture Department at Woodbury University in Los Angeles. Her past teaching experiences include Yale University, SCI-Arc, the Bartlett, Oxford School of Architecture, and Cornell University. She established her own practice in 1999. Completed projects include The Glass Studio, and The Summer Stage, an outdoor demonstration theatre for glassblowing. She and her partner established their joint practice [WROAD] in London and are now working in Los Angeles for a number of projects in California, Korea, and China.