Weaving live saplings together to form a kind of domed cathedral space, architect Marcel Kalberer and his group Sanfte Strukturen are re-envisioning the way living building materials and techniques can be used to design modern spaces.
Constructed in 1998, the Auerworld Palace in Auerstedt, Germany was their first “willow palace’ project, taking the efforts of 300 volunteers to build. The palace is now 10 years old - their techniques, however, are ancient. The Sumerian reed houses of Mesopotamia were famous for their construction of tightly bound reeds, and in Europe smaller outbuildings have been made of woven plants and trees for hundreds of years. Most of these are built from green branches, though. In this case the whole tree is woven in place to form a living structure.
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