Examples of cool *small* canopies/tents?

Hi All:

I coincidentally currently have several projects happening that will use fabric to make small canopies, for a dog park, for a local theater bandstand, and for a trail. 

I'm thinking of the quick scrappy exuberance of the Extinction Rebellion tensegrity structures that Phineas Harper wrote about here, but also the material elegance of Studio Gang's Lincoln Park Zoo canopy (not fabric, but her approach to wood is the way I'd like to approach the fabric: minimal, simple, repetitive):

Examples for inspiration, anyone? 

Oct 14, 20 9:25 am

Donna here's a few.

University of Stuttgart CNC woven pavilion:

Simple sculptural install (i worked on the technical design/ fab side) with tessellated fabric cover:

Something I personally designed and installed - a tensile fabric structure that responds to existing site conditions, interfaces with existing infrastructure (though this is an interior condition):

Large scale, but good - SOM at Denver Union Station:

Don't forget Selgas Cano's fantastic plastic Serpentine pavilion:

Tensegrity structure based on a Bucky model:

Ball Nogues (though I think alot of their recent work is just a straight ripoff of artist Janet Echelman, this was pretty innovative):

This project is super cool:

SOFTLab does lots of temporary pavilions with interesting tensile aspects:

Working with fabric can be a real pain. It also tends to want to resolve itself into only a couple of forms (your typical bus shelter/ lake pavilion overhead structure) so it takes lots of planning and design to give it more specific forms or soul. 

Oct 14, 20 9:53 am  · 
2  · 

Thank you archanonymous! Do you have an overhead view of that leaf one you worked on? I'm curious about the seaming and connections.


Those are all nice and elegant, save for the first one. Who'd've guessed that the Stuttgart example would be the exact opposite of light, airy, and beautiful?


Donna, I'll dig around in the archives. I recall some images that show how the fabric didn't work in some areas, but did work in others. I think it had to do with orientation of the warp/weft to the tessellated fabric panel shapes. The fabric was connected to the steel structure via simple machine screws that went through some reinforced SS grommets in the fabric which were located to align with nuts we welded to the steel. I might even have drawings. This was a "minor" project at the time so I wasn't very good about taking the info with me. 


If you are anywhere near existing structures, i feel like your best bang for the buck will be to suspend it off that. I also think the forms tend to be more interesting when you have to address existing conditions.


I've heard Marc Fornes/theverymany does a lot of these ;-)

Oct 14, 20 10:14 am  · 
2  · 

lol, I considered posting the same thing.

1  · 
liberty bell

You guys know me so well LOL!

Oct 14, 20 11:17 am  · 

I just heard about the Spiegeltent, which is kind of a hybrid tent/panel building. The las Vegas show Absinthe uses something similar:

Tents are fun.

Oct 15, 20 3:30 pm  · 

Block this user

Are you sure you want to block this user and hide all related comments throughout the site?

  • ×Search in: