A new handbook written for designers looking for new formal and productive solutions using generative algorithms. It is particularly targeted to those users that are familiar with Rhinoceros® modeling software and want to extend its capabilities through one of the most well-known plug-in: Grasshopper.
Grasshopper offers to the designer the ability to generate parametric models of great formal complexity through an intuitive graphic interface.
The handbook introduces the theoretical basis and the main parametric modeling techniques based on algorithms, showing Grasshopper’s practical applications and its potentialities in architecture, design and fabrication.

Book Details

  • Edited by Arturo Tedeschi
  • Foreword by Fulvio Wirz (Zaha Hadid Architects)
  • Language: English
  • Paperback: 208 pages b/w – illustrated
  • First Edition | April 2011
  • ISBN-13: 978-88-95315-10-2
  • Price € 23,50

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“The book Parametric Architecture with Grasshopper by Arturo Tedeschi has proven an indispensible source of inspiration both for my office as well as the studios which my partner and I teach in various institutions. The book has helped my students to grasp the concept of parametric conditions in order to generate architectural bodies and arrays of continuously changing surface conditions. In the office it has helped to develop manifold of definitions both in the designphase as well as preparing the fabrication of components, thus proving the power of generative modeling. The concepts presented in the book intertwine in a natural fashion with the ecology of computational design methods present in our office and help us to continue further into our explorations, on the edge of contemporary design techniques”.


Foreword; Introduction – What’s Grasshopper; 1. What’s an algorithm; 1.1. Algorithms; 2. The very beginning; 2.1. Installation; 2.2. User interface; Components’ panel; Working area; 2.3. Components and data; Data’s local definition; Components’ direct connection; Parameters and components; Components’ chromatic differentiation; Direct import from Rhino; 2.4. Data matching; 2.5. Parametric control. Remote Control Panel; 2.6. Algorithms’ save and conversion; Save; Bake: algorithms’ conversion in models for Rhino; 2.7. Display and control; Draw Fancy Wires; Draw Icons; Enable/Disable Preview; Enable/Disable Selection; Navigate/Views; Focus; Hidden display; Cluster; 3. Mathematical and logical functions; 3.1. Mathematics; 3.2. Mathematics and Grasshopper; 3.3. Numerical sequences; Series – Numerical sequence; Range; Random – random numbers; Fibonacci series; 3.4. Mathematical functions; Component function F1(x); Component Function F2(x,y); 3.5. Logical functions: Boolean operators; 3.6. Exclusion lists and filters; List Item; List Length; Reverse List; Shift List; Split List; Cull Nth; Cull Pattern; Dispatch; 4. Curves and surfaces; 4.1. Representations; 4.2. Theoretical outlines; Parametric representation of a curve; Curvature’s notion: plane curves; Surface’s curvature; Isocurves 4.3. Curve analysis in Grasshopper; Evaluate Curve; Curvature; Curvature Graph; 4.4. Surfaces’ analysis in Grasshopper; Divide Surface; Evaluate Surface; Principal Curvature; Surface Curvature; Isotrim (SubSrf) Extract an isoparametric subset of a surface; 5. Transformations; 5.1. Geometrical transformations; Classifications; 5.2. Transformations with shape preservation; Vectors; Translations: Move; Rotations: Rotate Axis; Rotations: Rotate; Orient; 5.3. Transformations with shape variation; Resizing: Scale; Graph Mapper; Deformations: Morphing; 5.4. Paneling; 5.5. Image Sampler; 6. Exercise: Turning Torso; 6.1. Introduction; 6.2. Turning Torso; 6.3. Step; Collecting building’s information; Definition of the typical plan; Floors’ transformations; Covering’s simplified modeling; Front details’ modeling; 7. Data Tree; 7.1. Concepts; 7.2. Display; 7.3. Components; Flatten Tree; Merge; Graft Tree; Tree Branch; Explode Tree; Path Mapper; 7.4. Lexical rules; 8. Attractors; 8.1. Definitions; Attractor point; Attractor curve; 9. Mesh; 9.1. NURBS and polygonal surfaces; 9.2. Mesh; Topology; 9.3. Triangulations; Delaunay; Voronoi; 9.4. Approximation; 9.5. Subdivision; Subdivision surfaces with the Loop’s method; Subdivision surfaces with Catmull-Clark’s method; 10. Fabrication; 10.1. Project and fabrication; 10.2. Matters of scale; 10.3. Two case histories; 10.4. Exercise: modeling a complex covering; Covering components’ fabrication; Structural elements’ production; 10.5. Conclusions; Bibliography; Publications; Web references; Training.


Arturo Tedeschi (1979), architect, since 2004 combines professional practice in Italy with a personal research on parametric modeling, focusing on relationships between architecture and new design tools. In 2010 he publishes “AchitetturaParametrica – Introduzione a Grasshopper”, the first Italian handbook on parametric modelling in Rhino. In the same year he cooperates with Zaha Hadid Architects in London.

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