Colihue (from the Mapudungun language "kuliw"), scientifically known as Chusquea culeou, is a native species found in the southern regions of Chile and Argentina.It grows as a weed and captures forty times more CO2 than species like pine wood.
Colihue Nest is a mid-tech material system that aims to highlight and harness the constructive, structural, and aesthetic capabilities of colihue for the construction of spaces with identitarian, accessible, and sustainable value.Through a hybrid exploration utilizing physical and digital models, the physical and mechanical capabilities of colihue were calculated, demonstrated, and tested, reimagining its scale and moving beyond its purely decorative use. It is seen as a material that allows for a broader range of structural, technical, and spatial possibilities, a flexible and versatile material that can act as both structure and envelope, simultaneously serving as skin and bones. The developed system incorporates a material aggregation logic that enables the creation of habitable and enveloping structures. These structures are defined by a rigid perimeter of catenary arches that enclose a paraboloidal gridshell surface within. The filling of this three-dimensional grid is achieved through an intricate framework of laminated colihue canes weaved together in a seemingly random fashion, resulting in variable moments of density, opacity, and shade. The complete geometry behaves like a nest, an interweaving framework of elements without hierarchies that gains structural rigidity and integrity through the accumulation of discrete elements. Similar to a bird's nest, the wind passes through the colihue framework, and the structure flexes to dissipate dynamic forces, offering little resistance. Its permeable and flexible. The system encompasses a range of typological applications that can be built according to specific needs and scales. Each typology functions as a regulated framework that invites co-construction and collaborative work among individuals. The construction and assembly procedures have been simplified and translated into procedural guidelines to enhance accessibility for the participating communities and promote the transferability and replicability of the system. The research results and construction plans for COLIHUE NEST, are made available for free, aiming to openly showcase, disseminate, and promote the constructive, spatial, and identity-related capabilities of colihue towards a new mid-tech architecture.
Bárbara Barreda, Felipe Sepúlveda
Rodrigo Del Campo
Catalina Ellena, Ignacio Salinas .
Consultoría diseño estructural:
PO_LLC; Kensuke Hotta, Akito Hotta