Thursday 19 November 2009

Dutch Architects meet McNeel

On November 16th RhinoCentre and Arup Amsterdam organised an informal gathering of leading Dutch Architects and McNeel staff. The discussions were focused on the current status of computational use in Dutch architecture offices.

Bob McNeel personally learned how Rhino is integrated in the workflow of several architecture firms, sometimes as a representation tool or in some cases as a generative tool driving the design. Steve Baer, core programmer of Rhinoceros wrote down lots of valuable and useful notes. Giulio Piacentino of McNeel Europe and trained as Architect at TU-Delft, learned about the daily practice in the Netherlands.
A summary of the discussion’s findings:
  • BIM modelling seems to be the trend. But since no one (nor client, nor architect, nor contractor) can clearly specify what BIM is, Rhinoceros does not need to adapt to this methodology of working simply because of the lack of clear requirements of BIM modelling.
  • Most output of architectural offices is still based on 2D drawings. In order to facilitate this workflow, Rhinoceros could be better equiped for this task. It’s platform is mainly focused on digital fabrication. The market however is not that advanced yet.
  • Rhinoscript and Grasshopper have proven to be powerful tools for clever concept design and should become more integrated into Rhinoceros.
The gathering of architects has proven to be a good platform for knowledge transfer in the field of architecture that spans beyond the regular way of working. Tips and tricks on how to use 3D models as contractual elements and how to deal with liability were interesting topics arising from the discussion on dealing with advanced 3-dimensional complex design.

  • de Architecten Cie.
  • Arup Amsterdam
  • Information Based Architecture
  • McNeel & Associates
  • Mecanoo
  • Meyer & van Schooten
  • Octatube
  • Roderik van der Weijden - Architect
  • UN-Studio
The discussion on the current status of computational use in Dutch architecture offices was organized by Pim van Wylick for RhinoCentre with the generous support of Jeroen Coenders at Arup Amsterdam.
Pim van Wylick is RhinoCentre’s specialist for Architecture. He also heads the Form Foundation, an architecture office specialised in complex geometries and computational research. For any questions regarding using Rhinoceros in an architectural environment or interest in a future gathering, please contact him under