Nagisa Kijima, Tomohiro Tachi

The University of Tokyo

I have been fascinated by the way parts fit nicely in well-designed products; the oldest examples of such products are traditional Japanese wooden joints. Together with the inspiration from space-filling polyhedra, I came up with this artwork. I created this work in the art-science collaboration class "Individual and Group," taught by Tomohiro Tachi and Aasao Tokolo, held at the University of Tokyo in 2020. The participants created artworks inspired by the connection between math, art, science, and design, including Tokyo 2020 Olympic Paralympic emblems "Harmonized Chequered Emblems" and the geometry of tessellation underlying the patterns.

Diamond Joint
Diamond Joint
13 x 16 x 15 cm

Tsugite and shiguchi are Japanese traditional techniques to join timber without nails, used for buildings and furniture. Original tsugite and shiguchi can connect timbers only straight or at right angles along the orthogonal grid. I imagine that the space-filling tessellation of rhombic dodecahedron is a potential grid system in architecture. So, I designed this block system with tsugite and shiguchi that can be assembled into the diamond lattice. Each piece has a hexagonal cross-section, and every pair of pieces are joined at Maraldi angle (109.5 degrees). The surface of the piled blocks is the rhombic dodecahedron sponge that divides the space into equal halves; the surface is homeomorphic to the Schwarz D surface.