One year ago, November 15th 2012 we launched Seascape Prototype #1 at Gili T. in Indonesia.

In the meanwhile the calcium-carbonate layer that surrounds the metal pieces has grown thicker. The synthesis between mineral accretion fabrication and the digitally developed skeleton becomes more evident as time passes.

Corals and fish seem to be fine :).


Seascape Prototype #1, Verena Vogler from Verena Vogler on Vimeo.

Some of the main challenges that our civilization is facing are related to environmental depletion and the restoration of damaged habitats. “Seascape Prototype #1” is an experiment about Computational Design and Ecological Underwater Manufacturing. It is a story of creation in one of Earth’s most challenging environments: THE OCEAN
Local natural material and energy resources occur in abundance, ready to be used for a novel way of creating.

/Seascape Prototype #1 is a project in collaboration with the Global Coral Reef Alliance and Gili Eco Trust


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Seascape architecture is an unexplored field of landscape architecture that holds promising potential for the future.

What is missing are strong implementations of seascape architecture in restoration. Here is where this project comes in, that I have developed over the last years.

Seascape Reef: Prototype #1” is a parametric metal structure that mimics a natural reef launched underwater prototype during the 8th Biorock Training Workshop in Indonesia. The project was designed as additive system, which can endlessly grow in 3 dimensions, by adding pieces of the “Under Water 3D puzzle”.  This way, linear, circular, high and low structures can be built. The small surface area of each piece made it easier for currents to pass through and the spiked edges to attach big corals- by just pushing them in. The structure was brought down in a basket and has been fully assembled under water in a short amount of time. Because of its nature- oriented geometry corals could be placed in different levels and fish were already able to hide in the gaps. In that case all pieces were designed with the same size which made it easier and faster to assemble and no complicated introduction was necessary.  The push-fit joints are reinforced by a limestone layer that emerges through mineral accretion fabrication.

The project has been designed digitally. All 100 pieces have been cut in a short amount of time out of sheet metal using a laser cutting machine at Laserpenta in Barcelona.

This ongoing research project will show whether this and other parametric structures are suitable for the local conditions at Gili Island and will guide the design of future artifical reefs.

Many thanks to Delfine and Tom to make the placement possible, to Karl  for the help with the anode connection and to Rani and David for great underwater photographs and of course to Amanda for the fantastic documentation of the electrolytic impact on the model.

Global Coral Reef Alliance, BIOROCK ©, Eco Gili TrustKarang Lestari Project @Permuteran Bali, David Enon

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© coyright concept and all images reserved


Coral reefs are declining across the planet due to climate change, pollution and locally due to anthropogenic damage like dynamite fishing.

The Global Coral Reef Alliance, Gili Eco Trust together with local diving centers have organized and sponsored the 8th Biorock Training Workshop that took place at the Gili Trawangan Island in Indonesia during November 12th – 18th, with the goal of helping to restore some of the damaged coral reefs.
What is Biorock? Biorock© is known as a Mineral Accretion Technology that was developed by Architect, Marine Scientist, Prof. Wolf H. Hilbertz and  Biogeochemist and Marine Biologist Thomas J. Goreau. Commencing in 1974 they developed this technology through extensive experimental applications and demonstration projects, covering artificial reefs, coastal defense structures, shoreline stabilization – erosion control, mariculture, and marine construction.

During the Workshop we gained theoretical knowledge through lectures held by Thomas J. Goreau and practical hands- on skills on site: We were trained to build and weld metal structures out of rebar, to prepare and connect the anode mesh and became aware of the facts on site.
All structures have been shipped to a specific site and were put into place by divers. When the cables were connected, the structures were ready to function as cathode releasing H2 and growing a layer of calcium carbonate.
During various dive sessions, we volunteered as coral reef gardeners where we collected broken coral pieces and attached them later to the artificial reef structures under water. There they are going to function as habitat for marine life and attraction for divers.

I would like to thank the group of participants, Foud, Koman, Delfine and Thomas for this unique experience and the insight to a new medium to construct.

Global Coral Reef Alliance, BIOROCK ©, Eco Gili TrustKarang Lestari Project @Permuteran Bali


© coyright all images reserved

KSPN2’s Chris Nelson takes a look at the Biorock Reefs @Gili during our workshop.


/ project in collaboration with Miralles Tagliabue  Arquitectos EMBT Barcelona

Client Hafencity Hamburg GmbH

Architect: Benedetta Tagliabue
Project Director: Karl Unglaub
Collaborators: Stefan Geenen, Verena Vogler, Max Gunst, Gabriele Rotelli
Inauguration: February 2012

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Location in Hamburg

The beautiful space of the Miralles Fundation designed by EMBT Arquitectos has been inaugurated this year in the old town of Barcelona. The current exhibition shows Miralles at Harvard in 1993.

© photographs Verena Vogler