National Gallery of Victoria

timber products

Every now and then we get a project that really excites us. It excites because it takes something that is familiar and easy and puts a new twist on it and challenges us to think outside the square.

This is one such project that when we first saw the concept, we wondered whether it could be done and then when it was broken down and thought about, it’s simplicity became apparent.

Rory Hyde contacted Vicbeam to manufacture a geodesic dome out of curved Glulam Pine beams.

From Wikipedia – A geodesic dome is a spherical or partial-spherical shell structure or lattice shell based on a network of great circles (geodesics) on the surface of a sphere. The geodesics intersect to form triangular elements that have local triangular rigidity and also distribute the stress across the structure.

dome drawing


Something that looks so complex and difficult is essentially very simple. Vicbeam were asked to provide the basic structure that would hold all the other components in place.

The glulam curved members were all made to the one radius and then machined to size, fabricated and then erected in our factory as per Rory’s request to  make sure it all worked. It was then dissembled and sent into the National gallery where it was again erected for the Melbourne Now exhibition.



Here is a time lapse of the dome being erected in our factory:


The final product was a sight to behold: