This weeks Designer Spotlight focuses on Isaie Bloch, an incredible artist who uses the capabilities and limitations of 3D printing to inform his designs.
Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
I'm a Belgian architect and CG artist under the name of Eragatory. After receiving my first master degree in architecture, I joined the postgraduate program Excessive in 2010 lead by Hernan Diaz Alonso, at dieAngewandte, Vienna, Austria. My ongoing research and design ambitions are focused on the correlation between craftsmanship and additive manufacturing within several creative domains including Architecture, Fashion and Plastic arts and the digital methodologies blending in between them. I have been working as an artist in the field of hyperrealism exhibiting in Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands, China, Dubai and the USA, creating a range of art-pieces reaching from small prints, to 3D printed sculptures and huge hand manufactured installations. I have also been working together with designer Iris van Herpen on several sculptural dresses which have been shown on the catwalks at the Mercedes-Benz fashion week in Berlin and the Paris Haute Couture Show.
What's the story behind your designs?
I generally seek to design pieces dedicated to the geometrical capacities of 3D printing. In my opinion it does not make sense to use 3D printing for the production of regular objects unless they are intended to be prototypes. Just like all production methods all of them have specific characteristics 3D printing offers the incredible advantage of being able to produce almost any type of intricate geometry. And that specifically is the characteristic that I want to project in my work as much as possible. Highly ornamental, specific geometrical conditions and subverted aesthetics are elements which will always be found in my work. The Floralia vases are a design that balances on the edge in-between functionality, digital aesthetics, mass customization and object-oriented eclecticism. In contrast to contemporary thought and design, which views things as the aggregation or assembly of smaller bits and parts, in Object Oriented Design new objects emerge out of an ecology of interaction of multiple and heterogeneous objects. Through a process of formation or computation, highly differentiated, contradictory concepts and structures can become one object, without resulting in an incongruous collage.
Pink Floraria vase printed in Full Color Sandstone
What brought you to 3D printing with Shapeways?
For me personally Shapeways offers the ideal balance in between a very good online service (which is really hard to find) quality, price, materials and production time. Being able to get a direct quote and first checkup of your 3D model instantly is very useful. It speeds up your design process a lot, since you don' need to wait for several days in order to know if you should make this or that differently according to your estimated price. The whole website is so clear and easy to use, the web shops are pretty good looking and not complicated in any way.
How did you learn how to design in 3D?
As an architecture student I was confronted with the possible use of 3D tools. We were not forced to use any of them but it was very clear for me that these tools were going to be a great help according to my own aesthetic and geometrical preferences. So I started to instruct myself using a lot of tips and tricks that I found on the internet. Because of my attraction to ornamental overload and high resolution geometries I acquainted myself to the types of softwares which would not be directly related to architecture like 3DS Max, Z brush and Meshlab.
How do you promote your work?
I try to get as much exposure as possible by publishing my work on design and 3D printing related blogs and magazines. I organize workshops once in a while and during those I lecture about my work as well. All my work is published on my Eragatory blog as well.
Green Floraria vase printed in Full Color Sandstone
Who are your favorite designers or artists?
My interest is pretty wide according to artists I follow. Differing in physical or digital disciplines and status, some are very known and could be on the edge of being commercial and others might just be students or unknown artist with a very good oeuvre. But all of them have a touch of absurdness, eccentric material usage, high resolution intricacy and would preferably have a high level of tolerance for mistakes. Abhominal, Barry x ball, Henrique Oliveira, Jan Manski, Jerry Judah, Mrmann, Katsuyo Aoki, Lebbeus Woods, Michael Hansemeyer, Juliaan Lampens, Wolfgang Tschapeller, Stephan Balleux, Mack Scogin Merril Elam Architects would be a good representation of what I seek for in the creative industry.
Anything else you want to share?
I can not stipulate it enough, despite all the magical 3D tools on the market it is still very important to have a design intent at the beginning. I use these tools as a new set of crayons impowering me to form my ideas not as a series of digital trics generating random geometry. It happens way too often that people get mislead by automated fuctions in 3D software, generally resulting in mainstream/predictible/d?j? vu results. We should be subverting the logic of perfection: what used to be about mastering the perfect result of non-perfect processes should now be about the production of misfit and the grotesque through perfected processes.
That's some incredible advice for budding 3D designers, thank you Isaie! You can see more of his work on his Shapeways Shop or his blog.
Theo Jansen's 3D printed Strandbeest continues to evolve with an even more elaborate walking mechanism and a centipede-like walking motion. The latest evolution called 'Animaris Geneticus Ondularis' walks on twenty separate legs that move in a wave sequence. This new configuration results in a fluent walking motion, different from its twelve legged predecessors. It incorporates 122 moving parts, showcasing the complexity of mechanisms possible with 3D printed fabrication. It is also slightly larger than its predecessors. The operating principle of 'Animaris Geneticus Ondularis' is based on one of Theo Jansen's original beach walkers, the 'Animaris Ondula'.
We have seen our 3D printed ceramics used for quite a few applications that take advantage of the heat resistance and food safe properties, but this is the first smoking hot design to use those same properties for smoking tobacco. Pookas has also designed the Skull Tobacco Pipe with a Bronze Stainless Steel mouthpiece, a clever use of combined 3D printed materials.
My latest work entitled "Anatomica di Revolutis" is in honor of the developing 3rd Industrial Revolution. My art has been inspired, enabled, & defined by it. The resources & networks of the revolution are my tools, medium, & art gallery. I'm here to present my art within the context of how & why I make it, not on a shelf or wall in a gallery, but within the current landscape of the public psyche & part of a larger event.
ANATOMICA DI REVOLUTIS: Representing the project is a 3-piece sculpture entitled "Anatomica di Revolutis" (loosely intended to mean "Anatomy of the Revolution"). Each component is designed to assemble together to present a larger narrative about the developing 3rd Industrial Revolution. The fully assembled sculpture features all 3 pieces & symbolizes liberty & prosperity through an empowered participatory populace. It is designed to hang on a wall or other vertical surface.
Great video (no sound though) of giant dual-robot armed DLP Printer building some kind of monsterous resin stalagtite. It is called "Phantom Geometry" and is a masters thesis in architecture by husband and wife team, Kyle von Hasseln and Liz von Hasseln.
The project was developed in the Robot House at the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI_Arc) and awarded the inaugural Gehry Prize. The work is focused on the development of a system for generating material volume from streaming data. The creators state: "This system of fabrication relies upon native real-time feed-back and feed-forward mechanisms, and is therefore interruptible and corruptible at any time. The streaming data input may be transformed or modified at any time, and such" interventions impact emerging downstream geometry."
The layers are approx 3.5mm thick, cured in about 90-180 seconds slowing to as much as 500+ seconds as the build progresses (maybe the bulb was dying?). Clear resin was chosen partly to be able to cure thick layers as well as easthetic reasons. They were able to cure 1mm of resin about as quickly as 3.5mm. Layer thickness was chosen for speed & cost considerations. The main idea was to build a large, networked object within the intersecting workspheres of the robots allowing the object to bifurcate and merge with other neighboring stalactites. The second important idea is that the data was accessible in real-time. They were able to modify the 3d geometry as it was printed as well as the 2D image of the sliced 3D geometry right before it was sent to the projector. They were able to control layer thickness on the fly and add perforations. Because of this, they foresee very cool possibilities for scripting geometry.
DUS, a Dutch architecture firm, unveiled their KamerMaker ("RoomBuilder"). It is the first mobile 3D printer with the capacity to print inhabitable pavilions. The technology is based on the Ultimaker printer (essentially RepRap) but can print as large as 2.2 x 2.2 x 3.5 meters. It is housed in a giant chrome box that looks as if aliens had plopped down & begun building homes for themselves. Although arguably not quite large enough yet to build a pavilion in a single go, it could certainly fabricate the pieces for onsite assembly. The idea is to implement a more local & adaptable design approach, reuse available materials, & offer mobile construction of emergency & temporary shelter.
Arts collective panGenerator has created an interesting piece entitled FLOAT. It has surrounded a fish tank (that has a fish in it) with cameras. They plot the fish's movements, compile that & turn it into a 3D Printed sculpture. Exceptionally interesting shapes & patterns made by the random wandering of a fish in it's prison. Always wonderful to see information in a form we can study & appreciate. Would like to see this done with a colony of ants, a flock of starlings...or us in Times Square.
We have seen some AMAZING home decor and beautiful vases 3D Printed in ceramics in many different colors but it is always a pleasure to see such an elegant design that takes a modern digital aesthetic inspired by an ancient oriental tradition to make such a timeless form.
Using 3D Printers housed in a shipping container, unmanned drones and GPS tracking system Project Blue Sky promises to freak the hell out of unsuspecting Burning Man participants. The project is run by a non-profit called ReAllocate.org, which curates teams of world class talent and pairs them with specific technical projects, humanitarian organizations (other non-profits, NGOs) and resources to solve global challenges. Right on.
Imagine that you are in
Black Rock desert close to Center Camp. You step into a brightly
decorated space surrounded by ancient statues. You are ushered into a
shipping container that has been converted into a high-tech innovation
lab. You and your fashionable friend strike a pose which is captured
with 3D software and converted into a 3D model. You are given a GPS
transponder and specific instructions for your mission. On the way out
you catch a lecture on 'Scientific Exploration' and watch some aerial 3D
footage of flying over Burning Man projected in a 3D imax dome.
After you leave, your image scan is 3D printed into a miniature
statue and loaded into a capsule on a multi-copter. The copter navigates
to your GPS location.
When your GPS transponder goes off, you look up as the multi-copter
hovers above you. It gently lowers a padded capsule with your statue of
you inside. You unwrap a 3D medallion of yourself.
Your only responsibility is to return the transponder and tell us your story for our documentary.
We have seen 3D Printed experiments in variable structures in concrete and the potential it has for creating intelligent structures for architecture. Netfabb have recently uploaded a really simple, interesting video of the capillary effects of 3D Printed structures.
There is massive unrealized potential with 3D Printing to make the materials function in much more intelligent ways than they are currently being used. There are two main factors that contribute to the current underuse of the materials and processes.
The first is the capacity of the human mind to understand the true potential of a new material. When we are given a new material we often use it in the same way, or as a direct replacement for an existing material. As we did with Bakelite to plastics and now with 3D Printing. As we begin to better understand the materials and processes we start to use them in more sophisticated ways until we make the most of their potential, using them for their unique material properties.
The second is the tools we use to design and fabricate the materials. From hand tools to power tools and now the 3D modeling tools, we are limited by the forms that the software will allow us to create. With tools within 3D modeling software like Grasshopper, Netfabb or those being developed and used by Nervous System we are starting to see the very tip of the iceberg of intelligent tools to design for digital fabrication.
We will start to see 3D printed forms being innovative not just in the external forms as we currently see in the Shapeways galleries but also in their internal structure. The structure of the materials will start to be optimized for strength, weight, porosity, flexibility, impact, abrasiveness, friction and many more factors through data input, not just manual crunching of CAD. We have seen it start to happen in the arts with form such as Joris Laarman's Bone Chair and Bridge Table and in medicine with porous ceramic structures used to aid in bone grafts but it will eventually be a standard practice in design to enter requirements to define both material structure and form for digital fabrication.
Hopefully Netfabb's simple video will act as inspiration for us all to start think of digital fabrication in this way.
Mark Frauenfelder, founder of boingboing interviews Kevin Mack on his use of 3D Printing to make his otherwise impossible art real. There are thousands of amazing 3D Printed sculptures in the Shapeways gallery but it is always inspiring to hear how an artist approaches the opportunity to make the impossible, with math...
We all know Bathsheba Grossman's 3D Printed sculptures are massive in the world of math art but now they are just, massive... Thanks to the D-Shape 3D Printer and a valiant attempt on Indiegogo , Bathsheba's Rygo sculpture has been 3D Printed 6 foot tall and has now made it's way to Vancouver (only Canadian Shapeways users can imagine the UPS duties on THIS delivery).
The Rygo is now billed as the largest 3D Print in North America and is scheduled to be installed at VanDusen Botanical Gardens in Vancouver.
We are seeing the number of the requests for 3D modelers increase every month to the point that a few of the Shapeways community members are getting a regular income stream from their 3D modeling skills. If you have some design skills you would like to offer for hire you can offer your services in the Shapeways forums so that people who are looking to hire a 3D designer can find you and some of your work. Many people want to 3D Print their ideas whether they be art, fashion, jewelry, products and architecture, sometime they just need a little help...