On 19 May 2021, as part of the public programme for the exhibition "Anatomy of Structures" from March to June in Galereya na Shabolovka, Lucio Blandini, director of the Institute for Lightweight Structures (ILEK) at the University of Stuttgart, held an open online lecture entitled "Lightweight Structures: Past, Present and Future".
The architectural and economic potential of lightweight construction has been explored since the late 19th century. Pioneers such as Vladimir Shukhov, Gustave Eiffel, Robert Maillard and Pier Luigi Nervi left iconic traces of their work in various countries, showing how the search for resource efficiency can lead to inner beauty in construction.
Based on this legacy, the renowned architects and engineers Frei Otto, Jörg Schleich and Werner Sobek have developed a powerful school of thought for over 50 years. This school, based in Stuttgart, Germany, specialises in tools and methods for the comprehensive design and calculation of lightweight structures and façades. Current research shows how the principles of lightweight systems can be used to address the pressing environmental challenges facing future generations.