Heinz Isler and "Natural" Forms for Shells

Description: Themes: Heinz Isler as a master builder and structural artist; Emphasis on "natural" forms: pneumatic, hanging, extrusion/flow; Isler's masterpieces: uninterrupted thin shell structures.

Learning Objectives: Students should be able to: Identify who and what was a stimulus to Isler's creativity; Describe the two form-finding methods that Isler favored; Describe his process of construction that made his shells feasible and affordable; Identify his significant structures; Describe how Isler went through a process of imitation, inspiration, innovation; Describe how Isler and Candela innovated their 'bread and butter forms' and used these to create efficient and economical structures; Explain the concept of form finding and describe two methods of form finding that Isler favored; Describe how finding the appropriate form for a structure can increase its efficiency; Discuss how Isler's works demonstrated the ideals of discipline and play.

Keywords reinforced concrete, Isler, Lardy, form finding, prestressing, vault construction

CategoriesStructural EngineeringPrinceton University, Vaults

Teaching Materials


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