Yakuza Lou was a self articulating biorhythmic robotic garden which explored kinetic architecture and its relationship to the natural world.
Set in the front courtyard of Materials & Applications, the piece, composed of a blossoming landscape and a billowing cloud suspended over head, enticed onlookers to enter the space, and upon doing so, began to expand and contract as triggered by infrared motion sensors set along the property.
Comprised of a collection of custom machined and off the shelf components, Yakuza Lou was easily Materials & Applications most ambitious mechanized project to date. Based upon the simple mechanics of a child’s fortune teller cookie, the project was designed to open and close revealing subsurface geometries, which, in turn, allowed the surface to increase in volume and transition from a flat plane to a geodesic dome. The faces of the dome, composed of either waterjet sheet aluminum or vacuum formed plastic planters, were set to off the shelf hinges connected to custom cut parallel linkages. The linkages were then driven by motors purchased at a local military surplus store and re-machined and calibrated to function solely within the limits of the expansion and contraction of the piece. The entire system was then set in an aluminum track on the ‘dance floor’ in a hexagonal pattern so that no one component could expand or contract any more or less than another component, allowing the piece to behave as one regular geometry.
Design Team: Eddy Sykes & Chersonprom exhibiting at Materials & Applications
Position Held: Construction Volunteer
Location: Los Angeles, CA, US