Jessica Leigh Hester is a former senior associate editor at CityLab, covering environment and culture. Her work also appears in the New Yorker, The Atlantic, New York Times, Modern Farmer, Village Voice, Slate, BBC, NPR, and other outlets.
An architectural modeling tool goes mainstream.
Designed by Irish architect Damien Murtagh, the locking plastic blocks—which are at a 1:48 scale—were initially intended as an alternative to expensive software or cut-and-glue 3D models, which may be difficult for clients to parse and tricky to tweak throughout the process. Murtagh thought that the kit could be a useful trade tool. But he also realized that it had a wider appeal. The fact that the models can be disassembled and reused makes the kit a great buy for tinkerers who like to play around with design.
Murtagh explained to Dezeen:
"I always believed that by removing the difficulties associated with traditional model making—measuring, cutting, gluing and sticking—it had the potential to open up advanced model making to everyone."
Here’s how it works:
The 160-piece set creates sleek, minimalistic structures. But if you’re jonesing for something a little less pared down, you can also buy flights of stairs or “glass” walls, or download textures to outfit your structure with shingles, bricks, paneling, or tile.
Building kits, from $70 at Arckit.