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Taking inspiration from the tensegrity structures developed by Buckminster Fuller in the 1960s and the artist, Kenneth Snellson, Expedition developed the design of the tree-like tensegrity sculpture, or TensegriTree, that provides a canopy over a landscaped, out-door teaching area on the University of Kent Campus.

The TensegriTree sculpture provides a permanent memorial celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the University of Kent, and the 10th Anniversary of the founding of Kent School of Architecture.

In addition to providing a striking memorial, the sculpture provides a new out-door teaching space for use by the students and staff at the University of Kent.

Students at Kent School of Architecture were involved in physical form-finding of the unique geometry for the TensegriTree sculpture, under the guidance of the world-renowned tensegrity expert, Prof. Andrea Micheletti from the University of Rome Tor Vergata. During a series of form-finding workshops the students worked alongside the project team to develop new concepts for this sculpture, which were taken forward by Expedition.

Focussing on developing an elegant and rational scheme, we worked closely with Cambridge University Engineering Department to numerically validate this new form of tensegrity structure and with ESGlobal on construction proposals – in order to have this exciting new sculpture ready for the 10th Anniversary celebrations!

Pete Winslow
George Oates

TensegriTree, University of Kent