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This paper explores the concept of geometrical frustration as an alternative mode
of form-making in design and manufacturing. While builders, craft makers and designers traditionally attempt to work with stress-free materials with predictable response and controlled outcome, nature often develops form and function through mechanisms of stressinformed materials. In biological systems such as flowers, geometrical frustration caused by internal stresses often leads to shape transformation. Although scientists have studied and understood this phenomena, material frustration has yet been introduced as a possibility for designers. In this paper, a frustrated materials approach is brought to the design process, through case studies in two different material systems. Both in ceramics and in latex, the material becomes an active partner in the design process, no longer controlled, predictable and “well behaved”. Through close collaboration with the scientist, the material’s behaviour is understood and analysed for further exploitation, enabling to reverse-engineer surprising new forms.

When: 2021

Where: Cumulus

With: Shira Shoval, Eran Sharona

Made by (Material) Frustration

Hysteretic behaviour in FM-FRP architectured material


Architect by profession,

interdisciplinary designer by heart

Arielle Blonder

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