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Asif Khan’s Clouds (image via

Today in the coolest thing ever: designer Asif Khan has created a kind of generative architecture that actually floats. Helium-infused bubbles sprout from pods on the floor, float up towards the ceiling and are caught by nearly invisible fish nets, creating an ethereal canopy.

Maybe you need an instant shade on a hot day? Just pop open a few of these bubblers, featured at the W Hotels Designers of the Future installation at the 2011 Design Miami/Basel. A quote from the designer posits the project as pretty much straight out of a BLDGBLOG post, with its ruminations on avant-garde architecture and the possibilities of portable buildings:

I believe that in the future architecture will be light, intelligent and simple – like clouds. The Cloud experiment is about beginning that process to discover the future of architecture. Maybe we can carry a building in our pocket?

It’s a flexible, dynamic idea of architecture that’s not just theoretically interesting — it actually seems to work. Photos show the bubbles drifting upward in surreal tiny clouds and getting caught in the nets. If this is the future of architecture, count me in for a floating penthouse. Check out this photo from @wefindwildness:

Asif Khan’s cloud architecture (image via @wefindwildness)

Could this design perhaps have ramifications in rescue and rehabilitation work? Will instant bubble houses be the first on the scene in tropical disaster areas? The potential is sky-high.

Via Mocoloco.

Kyle Chayka

Kyle Chayka was senior editor at Hyperallergic. He is a cultural critic based in Brooklyn and has contributed to publications including ARTINFO, ARTnews, Modern Painters, LA Weekly, Kill Screen, Creators Project,...

One reply on “Floating Architecture Made From Helium Bubbles”

  1. Okay floating flying bubbles you can maybe put buildings on make this guy look like a pile of ass. Somebody quick find an art-theoretical angle on foam because I want this to stick around.

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