Time lapse video: Splendid dome adds to pleasure

AUSTRALIA'S largest travelling dome marquee, designed by a Brunswick Heads builder, has been set up at the Splendour in the Grass festival site in time for the festival's July 25 opening.

Tony Hill, 52, designed the 400sq m dome - known as the Lotus Palace - in 2012 and now tours the structure to festivals across Australia.

"It's a geometric dome structure which is basically formulated through geometry to form a sphere using triangles," Mr Hill said.

"These structures are strong and economical to build; are economical spaces and they can cater for large spans," he said.

Using a triangular-based framework, they are also portable - with the Lotus Palace able to be installed in five days, dismantled in four then loaded on a semi-trailer ready to travel to the next event.

The Lotus Palace will form the central stage at Splendour's Global Village and is made of solid wood, enhanced by opulent coloured windows, carved wood features and other unique design elements and is "all about lifting the human spirit," Mr Hill said.

Inspired by Buckminster Fuller's research of geodesic structures, Tony Hill built his first dome marquee in 1998 and has gone on to win four Master Builders Awards for his eco-structures.

"My first dome was built in my backyard on the Sunshine Coast as permaculture teaching centre," he said.

"It was made from recycled timbers, covered in wire mesh and inside we grew gourds, pumpkins and passionfruit around it - all kinds of vines.

"It was like a big terrarium - a very calming environment."

Mr Hill has previously lived in a dome home himself for 10 years and has built three of the structures locally; in Rosebank and Huonbrook, as well as many more on the Sunshine Coast.

"People are attracted to their spaciousness and aesthetics," he said.



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