Original Artworks By Buckminster Fuller
Inventions: Twelve Around One
A portfolio of thirteen screenprints and text by Buckminster Fuller published by the Carl Solway Gallery. The portfolio was produced under the supervision of Buckminster Fuller by Colophon, Cincinnati, Ohio. The edition is limited to 60 numbered portfolios (1-60) and 20 hors commerce (I-XX). Each of the thirteen prints consists of two 30" x 40" screenprinted sheets, one of which illustrates drawings for a patent invention by Fuller, and the second sheet illustrates the realization of the concept. These two sheets may be presented separately, in two frames; or together, as an overlay, in one frame. This catalogue reproduces both presentation options. The patent invention drawings are screenprinted in white ink on a clear polyester film. A plain blue backing sheet, provided with each print, may be placed under the clear film patent drawings to create the effect of a blueprint. The accompanying photo realization of each invention is a screenprint on Lenox 100 percent rag paper. The text pages and the blue backing sheets are Curtis Tweedweave 100 percent rag paper made especially for this portfolio. Each of the thirteen prints in the portfolio is hand signed and numbered by Buckminster Fuller on the clear film element.
INVENTIONS IN THE PORTFOLIO
1928 - 4D House 1933 - Dymaxior Car
1938 - Dymaxion Bathroom
1941 - Dymaxion Deployment Unit
1946 - Dymaxion Dwelling Machine
1954 - Geodesic Dome
1956 - Octetruss
1959 - Tensegrity
1959 - Submarisle
1951 - Monohex Geodesic Dome
1960 - Laminar Geodesic Dome
1968 - Rowing Needles
1973 - Non-Symmetrical Tension-Integrity Structures
Buckminster Fuller Buckminster Fuler signing the prints, March 24, 1981
4D HOUSE
United States Patent Office file no. 1,793, submitted April 1, 1928, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

Basic to the development of all the Dymaxion and subsequent geodesic shelter designs is the mass production of air-deliverable housing, which necessitates maximum performance for minimum materials, or doing more with less. The 1927 4D House, later called the Dymaxion House, achieved this through the separation of the elements of tension and compression, the first major technological innovation in housing in thousands of years. Containing 1,600 square feet of floor space with an estimated weight of 6,000 pounds, the house was suspended from a central, prefabricated mast which had all the utilities factory-installed.
Based on the price scale then current in the automobile industry, the estimated cost for such a dwelling, mass produced was twenty-five cents per pound, or 1,500 1927 dollars. Because it required many materials which were not available at that time, the 4D House was not considered a project ready for industrial production and distribution, but an anticipatory design which could not be fully actualized until these materials were developed. This process was assumed to require fifty years. An economic crisis in housing would discover the feasibility of the Dymaxion House.
The accompanying screenprint image of the 4D House is derived from a photograph in the archives of Buckminster Fuller.
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper,30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"

MOTOR VEHICLEóDYMAXION CAR
United States Patent Office no. 2,101,057, filed October 18,1933, serial no. 694,068, granted December 7,1937, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

Three Dymaxion Cars were constructed in 1933 and 1934, pioneering many significant automotive design innovations. These included front-wheel drive, rear engine and rear steering, and aerodynamic streamlining. Pictured is Dymaxion Car No. 3, owned at one time by Leopold Stokowski and housed today at Harrah's Automobile Museum in Reno, Nevada. The accompanying screenprint image of the Dymaxion Car is derived from a photograph in the archives of Buckminster Fuller.

Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"
PREFABRICATED DYMAXION BATHROOM
United States Patent Office no. 2,220,482, filed May 12, 1938, serial no. 207,51 8, granted November 5, 1940, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

The first mass-producible bathroom was designed for the 1927 Dymaxion House, and the first prototype produced in 1930, although it was never shown to the public. In 1936-38, in cooperation with Phelps Dodge, a dozen prototypes of this prefabricated, fully-equipped bathroom were manufactured. Half are still in use today. Weighing 420 pounds and bolted together from four die-stamped pieces of sheet metal, each of which is light enough to be lifted by two people, it was designed for ultimate production in plastics at such time when plastics were sufficiently developed. Now that this development has taken place, a bathroom very similar to this 1936 design, weighing 200 pounds and made of plastic, is currently being mass produced in Germany. The accompanying screenprint image of the Dymaxion Bathroom is derived from a photograph in the archives of Buckminster Fuller.
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"
BUILDING CONSTRUCTION DYMAXION DEPLOYMENT UNIT
United States Patent Office no. 2,343,764, filed March 21, 1941, serial no. 384,509, granted March 7, 1944, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

The first Dymaxion artifact to attain mass production, the Dymaxion Deployment Unit was developed in 1940-41 and produced in association with the Butler Manufacturing Company. Designed for war-time use, it was a conversion of Butler's standard corrugated steel grain storage bin to a dwelling unit and it was light enough to be air-deliverable and simple enough to be assembled very rapidly. Each fully furnished and equipped unit cost $1,250. Hundreds were used at the head of the Persian Gulf until the war-time shortage of steel curtailed further production. The accompanying screenprint image of the Dymaxion Deployment Unit is derived from a photograph by Arsene de Rosset in the archives of Buckminster Fuller.
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"
DYMAXION DWELLING MACHINE WICHITA HOUSE
The "Wichita House" was inspired in 1944 by the possibility of post-World War II conversion of the aircraft industry to the production of housing units. Work space at their Wichita, Kansas factory along with access to skilled engineering personnel and tools was contributed by Beech Aircraft. The completed prototypes produced there and weighing 6,000 pounds each agreed with the 1927 estimates of the weight of the Dymaxion House after the interim alloying research had been completed. Circular in form, the Wichita House was a structure tensionally suspended from a central mast and braced to the ground. No single part weighed more than ten pounds or needed more than one hand to be held in place, making assembly feasible for one person. Most of the parts nested for shipping, and all the parts fit into a cylindrical shipping container. Cost estimates suggested that once the mass production phase was activated, the completed house, installed, could be sold for $6,500. The accompanying screenprint image of the Wichita House is derived from a photograph by Buckminster Fuller
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"
BUILDING CONSTRUCTION/GEODESIC DOME
United States Patent Office no. 2,682,235, filed December 12, 1951, serial no. 261,168, granted June 29, 1954, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

In 1964 Buckminster Fuller was commissioned as architect to design the United States Pavillion at the Montreal World's Fair, Expo '67. The 250-foot diameter 3/4 geodesic sphere was constructed of steel and skinned with Plexiglas. Opened in April, 1967, this "skybreak bubble," called "Buckminster Cathedral" by Peter Ustinov, drew record-breaking crowds of more than fifty million in its first six months and in 1968 was awarded the first Architectural Design Award by the American Institute of Architects. The accompanying screenprint image of the Montreal Dome is derived from a photograph in the archives of Buckminster Fuller.
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"

SYNERGETIC BUILDING CONSTRUCTION OCTETRUSS
United States Patent Office no. 2,986,241, filed February 7, 1956, serial no. 563,931, granted May 30, 1961, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

Throughout the year 1959 "Three Structures by Buckminster Fuller" were featured in a show held in the sculpture garden of the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. The structures, a tensegrity mast, an octetruss and a geodesic dome, embody the structural principles used by nature and are thus strong, light-weight, and very beautiful, although aesthetic considerations played no part in their design.

The octetruss is all aluminum alloy, weighing 8,000 pounds, one hundred feet long, thirty-five feet wide and sixty feet high, composed of tetrahedrons and octahedrons. These geometric figures distribute load equally through four sets of parallel planes, giving the structure its great strength: sixty-five pounds of octetruss can support twelve thousand pounds. The accompanying screenprint image of the Octetruss is derived from an installation photograph by Alexandre Georges for the exhibition: Three Structures by Buckminster Fuller, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 22 September 1959 through the winter of 1959-60.

Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"
TENSILE-INTEGRITY STRUCTURES TENSEGRITY
United States Patent Office, filed March 16, 1946, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

The "Wichita House" was inspired in 1944 by the possibility of post-World War II conversion of the aircraft industry to the production of housing units. Work space at their Wichita, Kansas factory along with access to skilled engineering personnel and tools was contributed by Beech Aircraft. The completed prototypes produced there and weighing 6,000 pounds each agreed with the 1927 estimates of the weight of the Dymaxion House after the interim alloying research had been completed. Circular in form, the Wichita House was a structure tensionally suspended from a central mast and braced to the ground. No single part weighed more than ten pounds or needed more than one hand to be held in place, making assembly feasible for one person. Most of the parts nested for shipping, and all the parts fit into a cylindrical shipping container. Cost estimates suggested that once the mass production phase was activated, the completed house, installed, could be sold for $6,500. The accompanying screenprint image of the Wichita House is derived from a photograph by Buckminster Fuller
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"
UNDERSEA ISLAND-SUBMARISLE
UnitedStates Patent Office no. 3,080,583, filed June 8, 1959, serial no.818,935, granted March 12, 1963, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

In the early 1960's a design for a floating city for Tokoyo Bay was commissioned. After the death of the projects original Japanese patron in 1966, the project was taken over by the United States Office of Housing and Urban Development. Pictured is a single neighborhood module of this "Triton City" designed to house 6,500 people. Three to six of these neighborhoods combine to make a town, three to seven towns, with the addition of municipal modules of appropriate size, a city. Made from steel or concrete, these twenty-story stuctures are designed to be constructed in shipyards and towed to their destinations. Twenty to thirty feet of water is sufficient to float the modules. Studies conducted by H.U.D. and the U.S. Navy confirmed the engineering feasibility and the cost analyses of the project; Triton City could be occupied by tenants just above the poverty level. The city of Baltimore, Maryland expressed interest in such a floating city for Chesapeake Bay but plans were interrupted by the massive shift in political power that occurred after the 1968 presedential elections. Lyndon Johnson who had been very enthusiastic about the project took the model of Triton City with him when he returned to Texas, where it remains at the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library of the University of Texas at Austin. The accompanying screenprint image of Triton City is derived from a photograph by Buckminster Fuller.
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"
GEODESIC STRUCTURES—MONOHEX
UnitedStates Patent Office no. 3,197,927, filed December 19, 1961, serial no. 160,450, granted August 3, 1965, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

The most recent design for a semi-autonomous Dymaxion Dwelling Machine is called the Fly's Eye, which is constructed of nestable, mass-producible fiber glass components that when assembled form a 5/8 geodesic sphere. Three-quarters of the surface of the dome is constituted of seven-foot diameter circular openings which serve as doors, windows, mounts for solar collectors and wind-driven air turbines, etc. All rainwater feeds into the dome's watercourse cistern system. Both twenty-six foot and fifty-foot Fly's Eyes have been developed, the smaller using one type of fiber glass component, and the larger, two. The fifty-footer is large enough for three stories of 2,000 square feet, a garden, trees and a pool. One of the fifty-footers is now installed in Los Angeles' Pershing Square in celebration of that city's 200th anniversary. It is called the Bicentennial Dome. The accompanying screenprint image of the Fly's Eye Dome is derived from a photograph by Tom Vnetz
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"
LAMINAR GEODESIC DOME
United States Patent Office no. 3,203,144, filed May 27, 1960, serial no. 32,268, granted August 31, 1965, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

There are over 200,000 geodesic domes on Planet Earth, functioning in every environment from the Equator to the North and South Poles. One dome serves as a weather radar station and was helicopter-lifted fully assembled to the top of Japan's Mt. Fuji, over twelve thousand feet above sea level. It is Japan's highest weather station, and has been called "the pearl in the crown of Fuji-San." The accompanying screenprint image of the Mt. Fuji Dome is derived from a photograph in the archives of Buckminster Fuller.
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"

WATERCRAFT—ROWING NEEDLES
United States Patent Office no.3,524,422, filed March 28,1968, serial no. 716,957, granted August 18, 1970, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

The latest in a series of watercraft designs, the first of which was developed and built in 1965, the "rowing needle" is actually designed for rowing and sailing. It is a catamaran with twin hulls surmounted by a sliding seat and it affords minimal water resistance.

The accompanying screenprint image of the Rowing Needle is derived from a photograph by John Loengard, LIFE Magazine, Tme Inc.

Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40" Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint on Lennox paper, 30" x 40"

NON-SYMMETRICAL TENSION- INTEGRITY STRUCTURES
United States Patent Office no.3,866,366, filed August 7,1973, serial no.386,302, granted February 18,1975, inventor: Buckminster Fuller

In 1968 work began on the design of a theatre for Oxford University in England to be named after Samuel Beckett. The project, which was supported in part by Richard Burton, underwent several design phases, none of which has as yet been actualized. The current plan is for a mobile,tensegrity-shelled facility, utilizing the enormous structural strength accomplished with the minimal material input inherent in tensegrity structures.

The accompanying screenprint image of the model for the Oxford Theater Project is derived from a photograph by Charles Byrne.
Screenprint in white ink on clear polyester film overlaid on a Curtis plain blue backing sheet, 30" x 40" Screenprint

Complex Of Jitterbugs 1976
Dimensions 35" Diameter (Top) X 72" High (Includingbase). Materials: Polished Aluminum, Etched Copper, Stainless Steel Edition Of 25 Signature Etched In Metal

Closest Packing Of Spheres 1980

Materials: Chrome plated steel rods, molded thermoplastic connectors, smoked grey acrylic spheres around red acrylic sphere, Signed edition of 10

BuckminsterFuller's geometry shows that any sphere tangentialIy and symmetrically surrounded by spheres of the same radius will always produce an array of twelve balls around one ball. This phenomenon defines what he calls the Vector Equilibrium.

The transparent spheres of this sculpture give it an ethereal quality reminiscent of a child's bubble blowing while lucidly presenting the concept. Faintly visible equators illustrate the tangency of adjacent balls and the red nuclear sphere clarifies the radial symmetry of the structure. Twenty-four rods delineate the edges of the polyhedron uniquely determined by the nuclear packing of spheres. Its shape is unaffected by additional layers of balls. Two layers surround the nucleus which classifies this structure as "two-frequency," a term that refers to the subdivisions along each edge.

Duo-Tet Star Polyhedras 1980
Dimensions: 83" X 83" X 83" Triangular Base 72" High. Materials: Molded Thermalplastic Structural Tubes And Connectors. Bronze Tinted And Acrylic Central Octahedron, Acrylic And Epoxy Resin Paint, Signed Edition Of 10

As A Direct Embodiment Of Fuller's Synergetics Principles, This Sculpture Is Both Aesthetically Elegant And Geometrically Informative. Two Intersecting Tetrahedra In Red And Magenta Struts Are The Foundation For This Study Of Polyhedral Symmetries. Their Combined Eight Vertices Outline A Cube, While Their Points Of Intersection Create The Six Vertices Of An Octahedron. The Resulting White Cube And Yellow Octahedron Are Thus Situated To Illustrate Their Relationship Of "Duality", A Fundamental Property In Topology.
The Octahedron Bisecting The Tetrahedron Edges Produces Four Smaller Tetrahedra, And The Ever-Present Vector Equilibrum, Delineated By Chrome Struts, Is A Byproduct Of The Relationship Between The Cube And The Octahedron. Orange Struts Show The Twelve Equivalent Radial Vectors And Display Smaller Tetrahedral And Octahedral Units. The Result Is A Maze Of Information, Weaving Together So Many Polyhedral Symmetries, That Attempts To Enumerate All Significant Relationships Are Precluded By Inevitable New Discoveries. This Sculpture Clarifies Fuller's Concept Of "Multiplication Only By Division" By Starting With The Simplest Possible Structure, Thetetrahedron. And Through Progressive Subdivision, Generating The More Complex Polyhedra.

Dymaxion Air Ocean World Map, 1980
Dimensions: 50 X 72 Inches, Materials: 100 Percent Rag Paper, Signed Edition Of 85

The Dymaxion Air-Ocean World Map Designed And Patented By Buckminster Fuller Is The First In The History Of Cartography To Show The Whole Surface Of The Earth With No Visible Distortion Of The Relative Size And Shape Of The Land And Sea Areas And No Breaks In The Continental Contours. The Map Offered Here Measures 50 X 72 Inches And Is Brilliantly Silk Screened In 29 Colors (Showing Mean Low Temperature Zones) On Arches 100 Percent Rag Paper. In A Limited Edition Of 85 Prints, Each Is Hand Signed And Numbered.
Fuller Describes The Dymaxion Map As A Tool Which Provides The Least Distorted Means Of Studying At One Glance The Total Synergetic Significance Of Air-Ocean Economics And The Alternate Strategies For Integrating All Phases And States Of Energy- Behavior-Resources Toward Operative Advantage Of All World People.

Dymaxion Rowing Shell
Easy To Row - Safe For Any Age Rower - Does Not Tip Over Even In Waves Or Wake

 

History Of Fuller's Rowing Shell