Tiia and Martha were not long into their Part 1 placement with Threesixty Architecture when, at our Annual Conference, they were given the opportunity to present their own design ideas for an in-house design competition. After entering their initial proposal, they were shortlisted for the final where they presented their concept in front of the Glasgow and Inverness cohort. They came a fantastic second place in the competition and were highly commended for their concept. So much so, that they have now been asked to continue this design and work towards a brief for a possible future project for Threesixty Architecture.
With Martha’s personal interest in the regeneration of disused spaces, and Tiia’s passion for futuristic design they put their heads together to come up with a concept design which would create illuminated space within disused areas of Glasgow. Supported with rigorous research they developed an idea for inflatable exhibition space that provides a multi-purpose pneumatic installation capable of hosting exhibitions and performances – whilst also providing a unique experience in and of itself. This ‘inflation’ would squeeze into any space and invade an empty, dark void, as a massive plastic bubble that illuminates its surroundings. The key advantages of an inflatable structure are its ease to construct from a “flatpack” form and subsequently its transportability.
By looking at past and present precedents Martha and Tiia are currently developing a brief to present their idea in a more conclusive form. They have analysed the historic uses of inflatable structures, from zeppelins to avant-garde structures made by architectural groups like Ant Farm, and current uses like Plastique Fantastique and The Spacebuster by Raumlabor.
The very nature of the plastic bubble is its malleability, which gives an opportunity for a very multipurpose, tactile exhibition space, and has almost no limits to its uses. From their research they discovered inflatable structures from around the world being used as cinemas, bars, play areas, sensory experiences and exhibition spaces.
During this project Tiia and Martha have been given the opportunity to explore new materials and are researching ways in which they can produce inflatable membranes from recycled materials.
As an initial first step they propose the first location of an inflatable structure to be within our very own Garment Factory, making use of one of the currently vacant office spaces. This could be an opportunity for collaboration between Threesixty, the Garment Factory and new clients.