AA Visiting School Dubai 5.0

Additive Stereotomies
Friday 29 March - Saturday 6 April 2019

Additive Stereotomies

Friday 29 March – Saturday 6 April 2019

AAVS DXB (AA Visiting School Dubai) continues to explore boundaries of innovative technologies in the search for novel tectonics, contextual to the Middle East.

Made effective in late 2019, ‘The Dubai 3D Printing Strategy’ mandates that 2% of new construction to be comprised of 3D Printed elements, to drive innovations in new materials, carbon neutral construction, and design automation. This percentage will grow to 25% by 2030, anchoring Dubai as the ‘3D Printing Hub of the World’.

The fifth edition of the workshop will advance the findings of the previous one, exploring Additive Manufacturing as means to seed exciting, sustainable constructions.The groups will examine generating, testing and constructing components of the scaled constructions in light of the principles of ‘Stereotomy’ -the art and science of cutting 3D solids into particular shapes, to enable the assembly of structurally stable structures.

Throughout an experimental design process, AAVSDXB will arm participants with the core skills in generative design, digital manufacturing, and visualization. The workshop will elucidate the future of high-performance environments and form-making, and will conclude with project presentations and an exhibition of outcomes.
Sadaf' a 3D Printed bus Shed ,Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), -Image Courtesy of MEAN* Middle East Architecture Network 2018
Stereotomy (Greek: στερεός (stereós) "solid" and τομή (tomē) "cut ") is the art and science of cutting three-dimensional solids into particular shapes. Typically this involves materials such as stone or wood which is cut to be assembled into complex structures

Prominent Features of the Workshop/ Skills developed

-Expert Tutors in advanced computational design: Introduction to Algorithmic design and methods.

-Introduction to 3D Printing and prototyping at large scales.

-Access to In5 Fablab 3D printers, CNC machines, Laser Cutters
Exhibition in Dubai Design District and the opportunity to network with interested entities in the region.

-Access to Innovation hub in Dubai Design District (In5 Design Fablab).

-Expert Tutors in advanced computational design.Introduction to Algorithmic design and methodsAccess to In5 Fablab 3D printers, CNC machines, Laser Cutters.

-Exhibition in Dubai Design District and the opportunity to network with like-minded entities in the region.

General Information


Friday 29 March – Saturday 6 April 2019


In5 Design Prototyping Lab, Hai d3, Dubai Design District


The AA Visiting School requires a fee of £760 per participant, which includes a £60 Visiting membership fee.


All participants travelling from abroad are responsible for securing any visa required, and are advised to contact their home embassy early. After payment of fees, the AA School can provide a letter confirming participation in the workshop.


All participants are reponsible for their own insurance including travel and health insurance. All participants also need to ensure that any equipment and valuable items such as laptops are covered by their own insurance as the AA takes no responsibility for items lost or stolen.


The workshop is open to current architecture and design students, phd candidates and young professionals. Software Requirements:
Adobe Creative Suite, Rhino (SR8 or later), Grashopper3D, Python, CAM Software TBA.
Riyad Joucka (BArch, MArch AA)

Is a Computational Designer, Entrepreneur and Researcher based in Dubai. He is the Lead Architect and founder of MEAN* ‘Middle East Architectural Network’; an Innovative Architecture Practice, and the synergistic counterpart to MEAL* ‘Middle East Architecture Lab’; An Experimental Design Repository. The two symbiotic organizations are aimed at amalgamating material research with computational design solutions. He has gained professional experience in the Middle East and Asia as well as North America.
Riyad worked in New York and Hong Kong from 2012- 2017 at the intersection of academia and practice, on complex structures, facades and building technologies, with a focused interest in design that is at the nexus of technology, material research, and computation. Riyad earned his Master of Architecture (MArch, Distinction) at the Emergent Technologies & Design program at the AA School of Architecture in London. Riyad had been a program head at the AA Visiting School for over 5 years, with directorship and teaching experience in over 15 workshops.
Alessandro Zomparelli (BArch, MArch)

Is a member of Co-de-iT as part of the design team for the Reefs project, a 3D printed reef system computationally designed for adaptation to marine environment. He taught in several international workshops about computational design strategies in Architecture and Product Design.
His background in Engineering and Architecture  drove him to explore the opportunities of computational design in combination with 3D printing technologies at different scales, from architecture to human body. In 2012 he co-founded MHOX, a generative design studio focused on the development of body extensions developing products such as customized masks, medical devices and fashion products. Since 2015 he is author and developer of Tissue, an open-source add-on for Blender with the aim to make some Computational Design workflows more easy and intuitive.He is currently Contract Professor at Accademia di Belle Arti di Bologna and at Istituto Marangoni (Milan), where he teaches digital design techniques for product design.
Roberto Naboni (BArch, PhD Hons.)

Dr. Roberto Naboni, is an experimental Architect and Assistant Professor in Computational Design and Digital Fabrication at the University of Southern Denmark (SDU) where he leads CREATE, the group for Computational Research in Emergent Architectural Technology.
His research and practice are focused on evolving visionary architecture and design concepts with new material systems and advanced manufacturing.
Author of Advanced Customization in Architectural Design and Construction (2015), he has built experimental architecture and presented his work in international conferences and exhibitions.
Since 2014, he is founding co-director of ACTLAB at Politecnico di Milano.
His collaborations have included international research centers and offices for architecture, such as ICD and ITKE Stuttgart, AA School, Politecnico di Milano, Skidmore Owings and Merrill, Enric Miralles & Benedetta Tagliabue Associates and Stefano Boeri Studio.
//Program Head
//Unit Tutor
//Unit Tutor

Alessandro Zomparelli / Digital Simulation Experiment in Component Aggregation

Lightbox Section

Alessandro Zomparelli (BArch, MArch)

Unit 1/ will be focus on two different aspects, both crucial for the success of the project. On one side the definition of an overall surface, representing the overall form of an object, based on form finding strategies in order to design an efficient structural system.

The second half of the investigation will examine joinery details. Different composition strategies will be prototyped, for the individual 3D printed components to be combined in order to reproduce the overall surface.

The shape of each individual components should allow them to be efficiently combined, together with possible tensile elements according to the adopted form-finding strategy.

Tools: Rhinoceros, Grasshopper3D, Blender
Roberto Naboni (BArch, PhD Hons.)

Unit 2/ will explore novel architectural configurations arising from the combination of emergent logics of additive materialization with the use of computational tooling for the design and analysis of complex structures.

Participants will be involved in manifold design explorations around the concepts of structural form-finding, topology variations, high-res morphological characterization, and advanced joinery.

In this process, Additive Manufacturing will be employed as a systematic means of inquiry to test, observe, and refine design options iteratively, towards the definition of emergent and unseen stereotomic assemblies.

Tools: Rhinoceros, Grasshopper3D
//Unit 1
//Unit 2

Roberto Naboni / Trabeculae Pavilion 3D Printed by Delta WASP

//Wael Nasrallah (BArch)
AA Visiting School Dubai Coordinator

Frequently Asked Questions

Answered by Wael Nasrallah
Workshop Coordinator and previous participant of AA Visiting School Jordan 2014/2015/2016

//How do I choose a 'Unit' Team?

Unit tutors will give a presentation once the workshop starts, you will get to know their approach in response to the brief, and you will have the choice of working with one tutor on a group project.

//I am not an archtiect, designer, technologist or artist, can I still sign up?

Yes. Applicants from all walks of life are welcome to the workshop. Your positive attitude, appetitie to learn, and your past experience will help us work as a team.

//Do I need to know Rhino3D, Grashopper3D, Blender or Scripting to sign up?

Absolutely not. Applicants with no prior knowledge of software can apply to the workshop.

//Do I need a Windows PC/ Mac Laptop?

Yes. Preferably, have the software above installed before you show up so that you can use your time to learn. Mac users are advised to run  Bootcamp.

//How long are the hours?

We will work all days of the week, 10:00 am to 10:00 pm to ensure that you maximize your experience with this workshop and walk out of it with amazing work to include in your portfolio.

//What if I can't be there all this time?

Commiting the time is important to make sure you learn the most. However, if you have urgent commitments, please let us know! We can accomodate.

//What is the schedule like ?

You can download the workshop schedule directly here
Fablab Team
Hernan Hoentsch

Hernan is a French-Bolivian product designer trained in Barcelona.
He is passionate about design, photography and art. The ability of objects to communicate is why Hernan chose to be a designer, he believes that this communication is a powerful tool for self-expression.
Hayk Vasilyan

Entrepreneurial scientist aiming to translate sustainable technologies into beneficial societal impact through the creative synthesis of materials science, synthetic biology and additive manufacturing, with a special focus on how to image and analyze bio-inspired  materials across multiple length scales.
Sikendar Hemani

Sikandar has always been a curious person concerning engineering or “making things”. He is a “tinkerer “ that worked in various rapid prototyping labs, surrounded by people of different background and professions: engineers, architects, & designers. As a skilled Engineer, he had the opportunity to work on various design projects lab in Dubai.
//Fablab Manager
//Fablab Manager
//Fablab Manager


We are collaborating with incredible organizations to bring out the best experience.

AA School of Architecture

academic body


ecosystem partner

3DVinci Creations

industrial partner

Raidy Printing Group

industrial partner

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