Stereotomy: A fusion of mathematics, physics and vernacular knowledge is the art and science of cutting solids traditionally out of stone or wood, to be assembled into complex structures.
The Stereotomic Scherk Vault is a new structural paradigm resulting from explorations that take advantage of recent advancements in digital fabrication in conjunction with parametric software, renewing a practice historically limited by Euclidian geometry and two-dimensional representation.
Inspired by the Abeille and Trouchet vault systems, our proposal explores innovative uses of stone by understanding the typical capacity and structural span of vaulted masonry formations. The project takes this tectonic principle as a starting point to unravel the structural and spatial potential embodied by a type of minimal surface known as “Scherk” surface, thus achieving a highly efficient distribution of forces. The design consists of a system of CNC routed interlocking stone blocks that conform to the geometry of the Scherk surfaces. This allows seamless and elegant transitions between perpendicular planes, minimizing the amount of material required for construction and producing a self-supported stone structure that is both functionally coherent and spatially expressive.
The design reinvents the archetypal interpretation of the vault in a way that results in a new and unexpected architectural language.


Structure: Stone
Status: Research project


Design: LUCA POIAN FORMS in collaboration with Nicola Boccadoro
Structural engineer: SOLUXN Ltd