Is it possible to design with a material generally defined as dessert?
The main branch of architecture is confectionery. (Chef Marie-Antoine Carême, 1784-1833)
Sugartown is a speculative project exploring the potential of sugar as a material in architecture, submitted to the department of Architecture at Cornell University as a Bachelor’s Thesis in May 2016.
The discipline of architecture is a material practice that transforms the human environment. Sensory, sweet, and sticky - sugar is the fuel for our bodies, and the object of our desires. Experimenting with sugar in the context of architectural design reveals new systems of organization, aggregation, and erosion.
Inspired by a decaying sugar factory, this project proposes an intervention that turns an unused factory warehouse into a new facility for the public to interact with and learn from sugar production through gallery, restaurant, and recreational programs. The building is split by a confectionary wall that acts asa partition and guide through the space. As different programs plug into it on either side, the wall adjusts its form and density accordingly.
The sugar wall is assembled from a thin steel frame that contains a network of copper cables. The density at which the sugar collects is amplified in moments where the cables pinch together, while twists and lifts in the structure allow for variation in form. Hidden within the wall system is a sweet surprise- lollipops for your sweet tooth!