Alexander Calder Motion Lab at The Fisher Collection exhibition in SFMOMA.
Iwan Baan An interior view onto the terrace at SFMOMA, in San Francisco, featuring a 4,400-square-foot living wall.

When the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) re-opened to the public earlier this month following a three-year renovation and expansion by Swedish firm Snøhetta, it debuted more than a bigger space and broader collection. Situated in an outdoor passageway on an upper terrace between the museum building and a parking garage is a 150-foot-long, 25-foot-tall living wall featuring 16,000 plants divided among 10 irrigation zones and fitted with an array of sensors that track moisture and pH levels and alert the system when the installation needs water or fertilizer. The wall’s designer, horticulturist David Brenner, is known around the Bay Area for bringing living walls into the offices of tech companies including Autodesk, Facebook, and Tesla, explains journalist Diana Budds for Fast Company’s Co.Design. Snøhetta’s commission was Brenner’s most high-profile yet. “They wanted it to feel really natural—like the essence of an understory plant community that you’d find if you hiked on Mount Tamalpais or in the Oakland Hills with native species and monochromatic shades of green,” he told Co.Design. The wall’s location on the site provided a few challenges to achieving this effect. For one, the wall being situated between two larger structures meant that the plants wouldn’t get significant natural light and also that most visitors would first see the wall from the side, rather than head on. Brenner turned to “leafy botanicals,” Budds writes, using “lots of ferns and amorphous swaths of greener that your eyes get lost in,” while also picking plants that could live year-round. The result is a luscious complement to the building’s stark, carbon-fiber-reinforced panelized exterior that should live, like the building, for years to come. [Co.Design + ARCHITECT + ARCHITECT Project Gallery]

Samsung is partnering with South Korean telecommunications company SK Telecom to roll out a commercial wireless network in cities across the country, providing a wireless infrastructure for business and public services while also gather data on traffic, the weather, and other conditions. The city Daegu, which is part of the country's third-largest metro area, is up first. [Gizmag]


"Materiable" (shown in the video above) is the latest iteration of research into transformable interfaces from the Tangible Media Group at the MIT Media Lab, in this case emulating the behavior of materials like water, rubber, and clay, in response to human gestures. [Wired]

Dallas-based HKS is the first architecture firm to join the National Science Foundation’s industry–university research co-op, the Center for Health Organization Transformation, which supports evidence-based design and workflows in healthcare. [HKS]

Watch a simulation of the damage a hurricane can inflict upon a building. [CityLab]

London-based virtual reality visualization studio VRtisan pairs a headset with handheld controllers, allowing designers to work in the space within which they are immersed. [Dezeen]