international digital workshop

21 - 27 April 2016, Volterra, Italy


Over the last thirty years the information technology has dramatically changed the architectural design process and the project representational methods. It is now affecting also the construction methods of the architectural projects. Robotic fabrication in architecture is becoming a natural extension of the ongoing change which started with the introduction of the Computer Aided Design.
The workshop participants will have an opportunity to acquire the basic skills in CAD/CAM, using the Rhinoceros and Grasshopper software. They will gain understanding of the successive steps of the process, from the development of the concept through design and digital fabrication. The workshop will include lectures about coding and scripting, which will be followed by the practical use of the robotic arm. The participants will have the opportunity to produce models of different scale.
The theme of the project will relate the technical skills of digital avant-garde to the classical architectural expression and language. The workshop will focus on the three-dimensional interpretation of the painting by Rosso Fiorentino, La Deposizione. The objective of the program will be to reveal and emphasize in the new, 3-D model form, the qualities of the painting which may not be easy to perceive in the observation of the two-dimensional art.


Nel corso degli ultimi trent'anni la tecnologia dell'informazione ha cambiato radicalmente il processo di progettazione architettonica e il suo metodo di rappresentazione. L'automazione robotica del processo realizzativo è naturale estensione di questo cambiamento iniziato con l'introduzione dei sistemi CAD. Seguendo un percorso che va dall'ideazione, alla progettazione e alla protipizzazione i partecipanti al workshop acquisiranno le basi dei sistemi CAD/CAM. Lezioni in aula sulla programmazione e gestione del file saranno seguite da un'applicazione mediante utilizzo di un braccio robotico a sei assi. Partendo da un'analisi compositiva del dipinto di Rosso Fiorentino, La Deposizione, si perverrà alla realizzazione di manufatti in scala variabile ad esso ispirati. Il tema tenta di mettere in relazione strumenti tecnici dell'avanguardia digitale con un linguaggio e l'espressione classici dell'architettura. Nostro scopo sarà la ricerca di ciò che non è visibile nel dipinto ma che può essere percepito nello spazio.

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Ján Pernecký

rese arch

Founder or the rese arch initiative, teaching programming to the artists at the rese arch GRASSHOPPER Sessions, at universities in SK, CZ, IT, PL, ES and at workshops Europe-wide, researching generative processes in the context of art and architecture theory.
In 2012 creator and curator of Asking Architecture, a Slovak and Czech pavilion at 13th international exhibition of architecture at La Biennale di Venezia.
rese arch
rese arch GRASSHOPPER Sessions

Giorgio Castellano

zero order architecture

Graduate in History of Art and Architecture & Construction Engineering from University of Pisa. Participated on number of international architecture competitions. In 2015 collaborated with Sou-Fujimoto Architects, Tokyo.
Since 2016, is the co-founder of Zero-Order Architecture, a collective of young architects and designers, establishing a platform for collaborative research, competitions and design development, within commonly shared paradigms.
zero order architecture


Arch. Ilaria Battaglia

zero order architecture

Jan Paclt

zero order architecture
The Netherlands

Schedule: 21 - 27 April 2016

Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6 Day 7
3pm: presentation, introduction to the theme_ discussing the relationship between the robot and the painting, robotics and art/architecture computational modeling_ conception and design, developing the concept introduction to robotic coding_ Kuka prc digital fabrication_ tests and examples robotic aided implementation_ starting public demonstration in Piazza dei Priori robotic aided implementation_ final production and public exhibition in Piazza dei Priori program closing


The participants should bring their own computers with all the software properly installed. Most of the required software is either for free or is available as a free trial version:


I partecipanti dovranno portare i propri computer con installati Rhinoceros e Grasshopper. Dovranno anche installare Kuka prc. Questo software è disponibile in versione di prova gratuita al seguente link.


[volterra-detroit] foundation
volterra international residential college
Piazza Marcello Inghirami 15, 56048 Volterra, Pisa, Italy


The participants should choose one of the following offers and send an e-mail to

  1. Complete_course + accommodation (6 nights) + evening meals: 550€
  2. Mid_course + accommodation (6 nights): 450€
  3. Basic_course: 330€
If you choose the 'complete' or 'mid' option you can have breakfast at the college.
Only for University of Pisa students: if you are an architecture and building engineering student you can benefit from Luv (Laboratorio Universitario Volterrano) grant, therefore the tuition fee for the 'complete' option is 450€.

It is not possible to cancel a valid registration. In case the participant doesn't meet the requirements, she/he will be reimbursed.


I partecipanti potranno scegliere una tra le offerte disponibili 'opzioni quote d'iscrizione', e mandare una mail a:

  1. completa_ corso + alloggio (6 notti) + cene: 550€
  2. media_ corso + alloggio (6 notti): 450€
  3. base_ corso: 330€
Se sceglierete l'opzione 'completa' o 'media' avrete la possibilità di fare colazione all'interno del college.
Per gli studenti dell'Università di Pisa: se siete iscritti al corso di ingegneria edile-architettura potrete usufruire del contributo concesso dal Luv (Laboratorio Universitario Volterrano), quindi: la quota per l'opzione 'completa' è di 450€.


Computer, charger, mouse and a notebook are enough. However, the participants will need to bring their own computers with all the required software pre-installed. The computer should run a proper installation of Windows. Mac users are advised to make a proper installation via Bootcamp. Virtualized installations (via Parallels, Virtualbox, VMWare) are highly unreliable. There is no Grasshopper for Mac. Most of the required software is either for free or is available as a free trial version: The KUKA robot is a dangerous power tool. The participants are fully responsible for their own safety and health protection.
Our telephone numbers are:
Giorgio +39 3896803904
Jan +421 907 514 587
The address of the Volterra International Residential College: Piazza Marcello Inghirami 15, 56048, Volterra, (PI)
Please find the directions to Volterra from Pisa and Florence below. If you need any additional information, please contact us by phone or email.
Pisa Airport: Take a bus from Pisa Airport to Pisa Stazione FS (Pisa Train Station)
Pisa Train Station: Take the train from Pisa towards Firenze SMN. The trains travel every 30 min. Your destination is Pontedera Casciana Terme (Pontedera C.T.) The ride will be about 15 min.
From Florence Airport: Take a bus from the Florence Airport to the Firenze Santa Maria Novella train station.
Florence SMN Train Station: Take the train from Florence towards Pisa. The trains travel every 30 min. Your destination is Pontedera Casciana Terme (Pontedera C.T.) The ride will be about 45 min.

Pontedera Casciana Terme Train Station: You will take a bus from Pontedera to Volterra. The bus station is just a 2 min. walk from the train station. Take the bus number 500 towards Volterra. It will take you 1h 10 min. Your stop is: S. Lino dentro Porta. You can also go to the last stop of the bus in Volterra, in Piazza Martiri della Liberta.
If you leave the bus in the S. Lino dentro Porta walk into the city through the gate (Porta San Francesco), and after about 50 meters you will enter Piazza Marcello Inghirami. The Volterra International Residential College is to your left, at the top of the Piazza, next to the church San Francesco.
If you go on the bus all the way to the Piazza Martiri della Liberta, walk into the city, turn left, walk through the Piazza dei Priori, continue straight on into Via Ricciarelli, and further down along Via San Lino. At the end of Via San Lino you will enter a piazza with some trees – Piazza Marcello Inghirami. The Volterra International Residential College is at the top of the Piazza, next to the church San Francesco.
The Volterra International Residential College is in the town center where cars of the non-residents are not permitted. Even though the building is close to the city gate, but it seems unlikely that you will find free parking in this area. There are some parking lots further out, but pay attention to the signs, as some of them are reserved for the city residents only. If you go for the blue parking lots remember to pay the fee!
We'll start at 9:00 we'll have a break around 1:00 pm and then we'll continue until around 6pm.
If you choose the 'complete' option you will have dinner in an agreed upon restaurant, Le Cantine del Palazzo, otherwise you can find easily small restaurants or cafè near the college.
Yes, you can. The second floor of the college is dedicated to social life of the school, offering a common kitchen with dining area and a spacious lounge. However, the grocery shopping and cleaning is your matter!
We speak Italian, English, French if you need it. The course will be in English.


Main partner



[volterra detroit] foundation

Comune di Volterra

LUV_laboratorio universitario volterrano

Main sponsor

Rossetti Prefabbricati

La Cantine di Palazzo Viti