Bodhi Tree is an interrogation of component based design and an exploration of alternative design processes as part of collaboration with Steve Deters from UCLA, who led a workshop with a group of Ball State University graduate architecture students in collaboration with the Institute for Digital Fabrication. The project began as a series of explorations with wood veneer, in order to understand its physical properties, assemblage, and component fabrication. This eﬀort produced a single component, assembled into a unit which can be multiplied to create any surface: wrapping a column, suspended from a ceiling, or climbing a wall. The curvature and tension of twisting the veneer strengthens each unit to form a stable and resilient lattice.
An important aspect to this project is the relationship between the designer, the material and the process: pre-installation design was limited to the component, allowing the freedom for customization and sculpting of the surface during installation–the resulting overall lattice geometry being the result of this self-organized form-finding experiment. This very intensive design – fabrication project provides an understanding of component based systems and their ability filter light and transform space.