shell star

The Shell Star Pavilion is designed to provide an exciting shelter for participants during the Detour 2012 festival.

The pavilion’s star shape references both the nearby sea and the 5-petal flower of the 'Bauhinia Blakeana' orchid tree, the iconic symbol featured on Hong Kong’s flag.

The design seeks to create an innovative, dynamic, and iconic temporary structure for use during the 2-week festival. The pavilion is designed using cutting edge digital modeling, simulation, and fabrication tools.

Based on the concept of a purely compressive structure developed by architects and engineers such as Antonio Guadi, Frei Otto, and Felix Candela, the Shell Star Pavilion can be made from a minimum of thin material while covering a large area.

The pavilion is the product of an emergent process that combines form, material, and performance into one integrated whole.

  1. Type
  2. Client
    Detour Design Festival
  3. Collaborators
    Matsys, SOM
  4. Fabrication
    HK Art Lab
  5. Size
    111 sqm
  6. Location
    Hon Kong, China
  7. Status
  8. Team
    Andrew Kudless,
    Riyad Joucka,
    Ricci Wong
  9. Date


Apply mass to each mesh node and convert each mesh edge into a spring and simulate physical interactions until system comes to rest.

Construction sequence drawings.

Computational design form finding phases: Computing Hanging Chain Structural Shells using Grasshopper3D


Red: High Deflection
Blue: Low Deflection

3D Scan using Faro 3D Scanner by TopconHK

Displacement/Stress simulation on Karamba GH3D by David Shook, PE, LEED AP Associate (SOM)

In Plane Stress
Red: High stress
Blue: Low stress

Bending Moment
Red: High moment
Blue: Low moment

No. of Points : 170 Million
No. of Set-ups : 10
Scanner : FARO FOCUS3D
Scanning Time : 1.5 hrs
Data Processing : ~15 minutes
Avg. Pt. Spacing : ~5 mm


Stages of on-site construction, Assembling the Shell Star prefabricated sections, to exhibition site in Wanchai Police Station.