2012 Melbourne Design Awards

Key Dates

Photo Credit : Image 1,2+ 3: Tony Owczarek Image 4: Christina Fogale Image 5: Christina Fogale


Project Overview

‘Cirrus’ is an installation formed by thousands of hand folded origami chatterboxes. It works within the parameters of a modulated surface, where suspension allows the piece to stretch and interact with different intensities of light. The light filters gently through the matted opacity of the Tyvek sheets enlivening the density of the surface.


Christina Fogale


Christina Fogale

Project Brief

Cirrus has been statically suspended in numerous locations around Melbourne including three leading design events. When first developed it was designed as a suspended ceiling where the aim was to create a structure made from a repeated form which would dissipate from view when standing as a finished object.

Project Innovation / Need

The softness of paper enables the suspension to manipulate the surfaces form; forcing varying sized voids and pockets within. The addition of light through the translucent sheets of fibrous Tyvek enlivens the piece, and alters the visual weight of the surface.

Cirrus, designed as a suspended ceiling, quickly decided to display many more talents depending on the context. She has been a flying three tiered sculpture suspended in a double height void above a two tiered staircase. Covered a 30m2 void where four surfaces became one to create an indulgent delicate ceiling, and has become a prototype once more in the research to implement gentle movement to it’s form. Each application has challenged Cirrus to perform in a different interior environment and in doing so it has proved it’s adaptability to accompany any space.

Design Challenge

The biggest challenge of Cirrus is the time taken to create her. The first is definitely the dedication to fold hundreds if not thousands of chatterboxes. If a group has come together for a cup of tea the folded piles start rising and adding and everyone has a great sense of achievement! Secondly it’s the gluing and locating of tension points, fixing of line, then of course installing. Going through this process is grueling, however there are moments throughout and at the finishing line where I fall back in love all over again and enjoy her in the new environment.


Cirrus is made from Tyvek sheets. Tyvek is created from high-density polyethylene fibers spun together creating a beautiful aesthetic and strong material. Made by heat-bond, without additional binders, gives it the advantage of being able to be continuously recycled and reused.

This award recognises a temporary building or interior. Consideration give to furnishings, fixtures, stands, signage and traffic flow.
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