Talk to a Wall explores the intersubjectivities of human and machine in architectural design methods.

A neural network was trained (LSTM) by procedurally sketching architectural ideas. The network learnt from the human generated drawings to then search in a high- dimensional space and understand the associations between the parameters and the resultant drawings. The model was then able to draw in a similar style to that of the human when triggered by an initial set of parameters. It will also propose its own variation based on the learning data set. The model predictions would then be translated into robotic motion parameters to drive the kinematics of a 6-axis industrial robotic arm with the aim of creating a truly collaborative human – machine drawing.

A Collaboration with:

Vishu Bhooshan – ZHACODE
Cristobal Valenzuela – RunwayML
Jose Luis Garcia del Castillo y Lopez – Autodesk

Full credits


ZHCODE: Filippo Nassetti, David Reeves, Marko Margeta, Shajay Bhooshan, Patrik Schumacher
BRG: Mariana Popescu, Matthias Rippmann, Tom Van Mele, Philippe Block

KnitCrete technology

BRG: Mariana Popescu, Tom Van Mele, Philippe Block
Chair of Physical Chemistry of Building Materials, ETH Zurich: Lex Reiter, Robert Flatt

Fabrication and construction

BRG: Mariana Popescu, Matthias Rippmann, Alessandro Dell’Endice, Cristian Calvo Barentin, Nora Ravanidou
R-Ex: Alicia Nahmad Vazquez, Horacio Bibiano Vargas, Jose Manuel Diaz Sanchez, Asunción Zúñiga, Agustín Lozano Álvarez, Migue Juárez Antonio, Filiberto Juárez Antonio, Daniel Piña, Daniel Celin, Carlos Axel Pérez Cano, José Luis Naranjo Olivares, Everardo Hernández, Ramiro Tena.

Structural engineering

BRG: Andrew Liew, Tom Van Mele

Concrete development

Holcim Mexico: Jose Alfredo Rodriguez, Carlos Eduardo Juarez, Delia Peregrina Rizo

Site construction coordination

R-Ex: Alicia Nahmad Vazquez


ETH Zurich
NCCR Digital Fabrication
Zaha Hadid Architects
Steiger Participations SA
Holcim Mexico
Imerys Aluminates
Boston Consulting Group

Special thanks

Grupo Altiva
UNAM Arquitectura