Assoc. Prof. Lisa Moffitt explores rammed earth during studio residency in Maine

July 28, 2023

Associate Professor Lisa Moffitt attended a two-week Open Studio Residency at the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Deer Isle, Maine, where she initiated research focusing on regenerative material systems, shifting focus from atmospheric models to earth models.   


The studio, which took place from May 28 to June 9, is designed to foster artistic exploration at the highest level, and those selected attend for free.


Dr. Moffitt completed a series of rammed earth material studies at scale using the wood workshop, ceramics facilities, and digital fabrication lab.


She used her time at the residency to develop a working understanding of the composition of soil required to make cement-free rammed earth for construction. She tested a range of forms and configuration that rammed earth can take at scale in model form.


This is part of wider research related to regenerative materials models that she is undertaking. While much contemporary materials-based research focuses on full-scale prototypes of exterior building walls, Moffitt relies on the rapidity of working at scale to rapidly explore a wider range of constructional concerns including the relationship between material excavation and installation, novel form-work methods, and material applications designed to weather and erode over time.