Sam Lanahan,

Combining Buckminster Fuller's ideas with green architecture and sculpture.


Flextegrity has developed and patented a 3-dimensional tensile lattice that is easily constructed from two component parts. The soccer ball shape is excellent for distributing compressive forces across its surface. Buckminster Fuller described these as ‘islands of compression.’ The balls then are surrounded in a ‘sea of tension.’ Tension and compression integrated in this way are in a ‘state of equilibrium.’ These two omni-present forces are what shape and provide stability to all structure. Lanahan’s unique C6XTY lattice can be made both very small (nano materials) and very large (bridges) and all things in between to create every imaginable shape. Applications range from computer memory (note everything has an addressable location) to the wing of an aircraft.

For decades, Mr. Lanahan has created industrial artifacts designed to explain his structural fabric, his lattices. Coincidentally, they are not only ingenious designs and new ways of organizing compression and tension, but they also double as art objects, provocative sculptures. After demonstrating his work for scientists, architects and technology experts worldwide, Lanahan is turning to the public. He is the opening artist/scientist at the first of its kind, a gallery of lattices. His lattices are all examples of new structures based on nature’s geometry. His vision still needs a project to prove its power because his lattice – using the shape of the carbon sixty molecule, called C6XTY – can build structural components more efficiently, more effectively and with greater versatility than ever before. Visit for scientific details.

The Lattice Gallery premieres October 3rd and will be open every First Thursday, joining all the other galleries in Portland and by special appointment. Mr. Lanahan will present his lecture "Building In Tension" at various times. Check more information.

Artist Images

C6XTY sculpture showing shape


C6XTY arch bridge sculpture