Geodesic Tensegrity Sphere, 120 Strut, 4 Frequency Dome
USA, c. 1980
R. Buckminster Fuller

Wood dowels with C 60 Carbon finish, plastic-coated wire
22½ × 22½”

Architect, designer, inventor, geometrician, educator—Richard Buckminster ‘Bucky’ Fuller was a global forward-thinker and accomplished individual. Over the course of his career, he strove to improve the quality of human life through efficient design principles or as he described, “doing more with less.”

He was born in 1895 to a distinguished New England family known to be non-conformists. Fuller never received a formal education and was dismissed from Harvard University twice. It was during his time in the U.S. Navy that his aptitude for engineering soared. He invented a device that sped the recovery time of downed airplanes presenting him the opportunity for officer training at the U.S. Naval Academy. There he developed a new method of reinforcing concrete buildings, the first of his 28 patents, a concept that helped him realize his calling to serve humanity through inventive, sustainable housing. In 1927, Fuller invented the Dymaxion House, a modular apartment building, which could be easily built at low-cost and airlifted to its location. Following this pioneering design, he created a series of streamlined inventions from cars to bathrooms. —Wright

Tensegrity is an elision of ‘tension + integrity’. Buckminster Fuller, building on the highly original sculptures of Kenneth Snelson, coined the term, to indicate that the integrity of the structure derived from the balance of tension members, not the compression struts. —Anatomy Trains

(Photo: Wright)