Thursday, September 17, 2009 - 11:28

The only surviving child of Buckminster “Bucky” Fuller, inventor of the geodesic dome design, has visited the Eden Project for the first time, fulfilling an ambition she has held since the project opened.

Allegra Fuller Snyder, 82, is Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of the Buckminster Fuller Institute and Professor Emerita of Dance and Dance Ethnology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

She visited Eden to see one of the best realisations of her father’s revolutionary geodesic dome idea.

Allegra, who lives near Los Angeles, said she has taken an interest in the project since its inception: "I saw a photograph of the Eden Project when it opened in 2001. I was so excited by it I turned the picture into a Christmas card."

As she walked out on Eden's viewing platform and saw the domes of the Rainforest and Mediterranean Biomes before her, she said: "It is enormous. It has been very much in my mind to come here and see the Eden Project ever since I knew of its existence. Of all the projects related to my father's work, I would say that this is the one I am most aware of as being a powerful, comprehensive project.

"It is beyond my wildest dreams. It is wonderful. I don't think I could really have dreamed of what it feels like to be here.

"My father would have been just thrilled. He would feel that it is a marvellous application of his thinking.”

Allegra said: “He was talking about environmental problems and warning us of global warming many years before he died. It’s great to come to the UK and see his ideas being taken forward.”

Allegra was hosted by George Elworthy, Eden’s Phase Five Director, and also met the project’s Foundation Director, Tony Kendle.

George said: “It was a pleasure to meet Allegra and show her round Eden. She struck me as an incredibly positive, hopeful person with all the creativity, spark and energy that made her father such an iconic figure.

“Allegra was visibly moved when she first set eyes on the Biomes and thought that her father 'Bucky' would have been extremely impressed by the size and scale of what has been achieved.

“She was also impressed with the broader ambitions of the project, particularly with its attitude towards public education, a subject that was important to her father. She found the project truly inspirational and hopes that Eden can form a lasting relationship with the Buckminster Fuller Foundation.”

Richard Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983) was an American architect, author, designer, inventor, and futurist who, as well as developing the geodesic dome, wrote more than 30 books.

Other notable geodesic domes include the pavilion for the 1964 World's Fair in New York City, which is now used as an aviary at the city's Queens Zoo.