Buckminster Fuller‘s patented prototype for low-cost portable dome housing, designed in 1965, has just been reproduced and installed in the Miami Design District for this year’s Design Miami. A 3d parametric model of the Fly’s Eye Dome was placed atop a pool of water in front of Sou Fujimoto’s Palm Court shopping center in Miami and features contemporary technology that makes it water resistant and passively ventilated.
The Fly’s Eye Dome was first built by hand by Buckminster Fuller himself before he died in 1983. The architect conceived it as a self-sufficient, low-cost portable housing solution. He built three prototypes by hand in different sizes, with large domed windows.
One of the reproduced domes is seven meters in diameter and was acquired by Miami Design District creator Craig Robins in 2011. Soon after that, the Buckminster Fuller Institute had a team of 3d-design experts build the structures using modern-day materials and technology. DRDesign, Conform Labs and Goetz Composites created a 3d parametric model and incorporated new solutions such as a new joining system that makes the structure watertight and enables passive ventilation. The other 15-meter wide dome, the largest of the three, is currently touring festivals and design manifestations, while Norman Foster owns the smallest one.