In 1770, explorer James Cook and his crew on the Endeavor landed at Botany Bay, becoming the first Europeans to visit the Australian continent. In celebration of the event, MakMax Australia of Brisbane, custom manufacturer of shade sails and structures, joined Fleming’s Nurseries and Ian Barker Garden Design to create the Trailfinders Australian Garden for the 2011 Royal Horticultural Society Chelsea Flower Show in London. MakMax’s curving shade sail anchored a garden design honoring botanist Joseph Banks, and the result was an organic and private space that won the Silver-Gilt medal at the prestigious international event.
The shade sail’s outer PVC layer contains ports to allow streams of natural light under the tensioned fabric umbrella. Light then strikes an inner layer of lycra to create a light pattern that changes continually with the position of the sun. “Our engineers ensured accurate geometry was used throughout so that the model would be separated into the individual sections that could be unified in the manufacturing and fabrication process, creating the desired architectural aesthetic,” says Bernie Neylan, managing director of MakMax Australia.