The Ombrae System by Quin Media Arts and Sciences

Vancouver's Rod Quin was trained as a simple sculptor at the Emily Carr Institute and the University of British Columbia, but he had a secret. Somewhere along the way, after studying oriental landscape architecture, sacred sites, and old systems of measurement and working as a sculptor, mold maker, technician, illustrator, etc. on various films, his secret became a vision that he would eventually make a reality. The time has come. Quin is the CEO of Quin Media Arts and Sciences - an art, design and engineering firm in Vancouver - and his secret has been revealed in the Ombrae System, a metal architectural surface.

The Ombrae System. Designed by by Quin Media Arts and Sciences.

By cutting and forming sheet materials (like metal, concrete, glass, stone, and even fabrics) with a CNC machine, the Ombrae embeds images onto a surface. It creates an almost mosaic-like effect of tiny, bevelled sundials, inspired by carving bas-reliefs and hieroglyphics. These circular 3-D forms work together to form large or small images and patterns with the light that hits their angled edges, creating shadows and light on the surface.

The reason Quin's idea for the Ombrae system took until 2004 to come to life had to do with the 3-D modeling technology. Back in the day, it would have been impossible to affordably produce and market. In other words, he needed to wait until these systems were more powerful and less expensive before he introduced it to the general public.

The Ombrae System by Quin Media Arts and Sciences

The Ombrae System by Quin Media Arts and Sciences

According to an article written about Quin in the Georgia Straight magazine, writer Brian Lynch believes this type of architectural cladding could change the built environment - from interior walls to facades of skyscrapers - as we know it today. I would agree, Quin's precise Ombrae design requires no energy (post-production) to broadcast a message. It is actually one of the most innovative and environmentally-friendly ways to attract the eye, not to mention it's simple beauty that would appeal to modern interior design projects that include the metal materials.

Do away with painted, one-dimensional signage and explore the power of a natural, sunlit Ombrae message.

Posted October 18, 2010 by Sonja Hall

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