People

Yasha Jacob Grobman – Architect Dr. Yasha (Jacob) Grobman is the dean of the Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning at the Technion, IIT. His research focuses on design computation and performance oriented architectural design and fabrication.
Yasha is the co-curator and designer of Soft[ware]Boundaries, an international exhibition on digital architecture in 2003, ‘Performalism – Form and Function in Digital Architecture’ (2008) and “5 Moments” (2011) the inauguration exhibition of the new architectural wing at Tel Aviv Museum of Art. He is the author of numerous papers in academic and professional journals and co-author of book on Performalism released by Routledge press in 2011 (personal webpage).
Avishag Shemesh – When we experience different types of spaces we feel different emotions. No one, no matter his or her experience in the field of design, can stay indifferent to the surrounding. One might testify a feeling of vibrancy and excitement while entering a big hall; another will look for a corner to feel more secure. Looking in the field of environment behaviour we know that many different factors can explain these differences. Yet several fields are left relatively in the dark- what happens in our mind? What emotional impact our perception has over us? What is our primary instinct? Do we have one? This research aims to find whether there is a connection between different geometries of spaces and what we feel about them. It will try to provide better understanding of what happen to us when we encounter different types of spaces.
Architect Avishag Shemesh (Technion, 2010) gained her experience in designing public buildings, residential buildings and neighbourhoods, now a PhD candidate in Industrial Design. In her thesis she explores the connection between architecture and human perception.
Michael Weizmann – Michael Weizmann is an architect and a PhD candidate with a keen interest in the field of computer-aided architectural design, focusing on digital manufacturing, performance-based development and algorithmic aided design.
Since graduation from the Technion with a BArch degree, Michael worked on various projects involving computer-aided architectural design approach, both as an academic activity and in practice. His professional background includes working as an architect at Arch. Amit Nemlich’s office, and experience in digital fabrication via the position of Technion’s Computer Oriented Manufacturing lab’s manager.
In his PhD research Michael is studying the fascinating properties of geometry that can combine complexity and simplicity in a single object. The research deals with development of structural building elements made of simple blocks, based on the Topological Interlocking principle.
Arielle Blonder – is an Architect and a PhD candidate with a strong interest in digital fabrication and materials, especially textiles. She holds her BArch . from the Technion, and her MArch from the AA, where she graduated the Emtech program (emergent Technologies and design). Her PhD research focuses on the use of composite materials (FRP) in architecture and the potential of digital tools for design and manufacturing to enhance their architectural applications.
Looking at fiber composites as textiles that can be manipulated and formed freely as it is custom in fashion design, while targeting architectural and structural applications, new fabrication and design processes can emerge (as outlined in Arielle’s Masters thesis Shell FABRICation).
Through academic activity and her practice, Amalgama, she explores various design fields and scales (architectural projects, exhibition design, outdoor sensorial spaces and textiles) with a focus on Digital fabrication, Materials and Parametric design. She was founding member and director the first FabLab in israel.
She has been teaching architecture and design in various institutions, including the Technion, Shenkar, COMAS, and Bezalel. In her teaching she focuses on the connections between the digital and the material world, self fabrication and customisation, paramteric design and fabrication.
Guy Austern – Guy Austern in an architect and a PhD candidate. His PhD focuses on the relations between architecture, fabrication and computation. After graduating from his BSc. in Computer Science Guy Austern decided that the world is more beautiful than can be described in bits and bytes and went back to school, this time to study Architecture. During this period, he realised that the bytes might have had a point and he has been exploring the boundary between computation and architecture ever since.
Guy has worked in Israel and the UK for various architecture offices, including SOM and NCArchitects as well as for startup companies in the field of robotic fabrication such as Robofold and Beyon3d. Between jobs he has graduated with distinction from the Emergent Technologies and Design master program in the AA and taught workshops and courses about digital architecture in the AA , the Berlage institute, IAAC and the Techion IIT.
Noam Attias – Noam is a PhD candidate, fusing biotechnology and industrial design. She holds a B.Des in Inclusive Industrial design from the Hadassah Academic College, Jerusalem, graduated with honors. During her studies, Noam evolved a growing interest in the fabrication processes of biological materials and its utilization possibilities. After a short period at WCDIB design studio, she decided to take a deep tour into the world of biology. She graduated with honors an M.Sc in biotechnology at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Professor Oded Shoseyov’s lab, the Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food, and Environment, Rehovot, Israel.
In her PhD research, Noam aims to explore novel uses of fungal mycelium as a structural material in architecture and design, using advanced interdisciplinary materials and methods. The research is guided by Professor Yasha Grobman and Professor Ezri Tarazi from the Faculty of Architecture and town planning at the Thechnion and Professor Ofer Danai from Northern R&D, MIGAL, Israel; Composing a team with unique knowledge and experience in the varied fields of Architecture, Industrial Design and Applied Mycology. (personal webpage).
Cheli Hershcovich – Cheli Hershcovich is an MSc student with a strong interest in parametric architecture, biomimetics, natural and vernacular systems and their growth patterns.
Her master thesis focuses on complex geometry facades. Using CFD simulations she examines the potential of complex geometry to create a microclimate by changing the airflow on a building façade.
Hatzav Yoffe – Hatzav Yoffe is a Registered Landscape Architect and Sustainability Professional. He is a lecturer and researcher in the Landscape Architecture Department at the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, and the Campus Landscape Architect at Kibbutz Ramat Yohanan.

With two professional degrees in landscape architecture: a B.L.A., Cum Laude, from Technion – Israel Institute of Technology (2009) and an M.L.A. from Harvard University Graduate School of Design (2013); Yoffe established a broad skillset that drives creativity and aesthetics into sustainable design. His experience as a landscape architect and as an applied researcher integrates advanced knowledge in urbanism, ecology and landscape architecture. Yoffe’s research Interests include the integration of sustainable design methodologies and technologies in civic infrastructure and urban design projects. His PhD study pursues performance evaluation of urban landscapes using big-data and machine learning technology.

Stefanie Rückrich – Stefanie Rückrich is a PhD candidate. She studied Architecture and Urban Design in Germany and gained experience on several earthen construction sides. Her research deals with earthen fibrous material and natural additives. It investigates novel possibilities of construction methods through the aid of current technology, specially additive manufacturing.

Past researchers 

Polina Tener Karake – Originally trained as a landscape architect, she always had interest in the combination between engineering, design and materials. She aims to combine those fields in here research toward her Master in Industrial Design in the field of “Smart tiles systems”, a field of self-standing structures without external joints. Polina’s research examines the potential of parametric design and computer aided manufacturing in the development of tile systems based on ‘joint-units’. She aims to develop a new prototype of a modular system with an inherent self- construction based on topological interlocking principles.
After graduation from the Technion Institute of Technology (com laude), she holds the position of a registered landscape architect and urban designer at Miller-Blum environmental planning. Earlier she participated in IAESTE fellowship, working in Roberto Candusso Architectos office in Sao- Paulo, Brazil.
Tanya Pankratov Yekutiel – Movement of building façade cladding components is used mainly to control the buildings’ exposure to the elements and to establish an optimal relation between the internal building environment and external conditions. Until recently technology and cost restriction allowed for limited application of kinetic adaptive components in building facades. Introduction of parametric design tools for architectural design combined with small scale inexpensive sensor/actuator micro-controller made it possible to explore new ways for integrating kinetic and autonomously adaptive components in building facades.
This research examines the prospects of decentralizing the control over kinetic cladding components for building facades, in order to make each component an independent unit able of self-evaluation and individual adaptation as well as mutual influence on neighbouring components. The research reviews the evolution and types of kinetic control mechanisms and examines the possible advantages of decentralized control strategies over the traditional method of centralized control, in the operation of adaptable cladding systems for building facades. The research analyses several types of physical case-study experiments that use Arduino, an open-source single-board micro-controller for autonomous and decentralized control over the cladding components, and compares their efficiency to that of traditional method of centralized control.
Hanna Levi – Hanna Levy is a MsC student at the Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning at the Technion.
Born and raised in Milan, she learned to appreciate and love art and architecture since childhood. Once she completed her first degree she felt the need to integrate a level of creativity to her mathematical background, by undertaking a M.Sc. in Architecture.
Her research is the right point of connection between the world of Water Engineering, more specifically Marine Engineering, and the one of Digital Architecture.
She will explore the implications of complex geometry enabled by computational technology to the design of urban waterfronts. Her work is aimed at developing computational design methods that will be able to predict and articulate the interaction of sea currents and waves with man-made infrastructure.
This project is being developed during a period of important advances in fluid dynamics simulations which are opening a totally new frontier in the conception and construction of architectural surfaces.