The technology is a futuristic manufacturing facility based on Rapid Liquid Printing, a breakthrough 3-D printing technology developed in collaboration with Steelcase, which can rapidly produce objects of almost any size or shape using a robot and a tank of gel.
The space serves as a manufacturing facility in which a robot instantly prints tote bags and art objects inside a glass tank of translucent gel. After printing, each product is removed, cleaned, and put on display.
This exhibit is the first public demonstration of MIT’s rapid liquid printing technology.
Rapid liquid printing can produce large-scale objects out of high-grade materials like rubber, foam, or plastic in a matter of seconds or minutes by “drawing” them in a gel suspension.
Traditional 3-D printing is restricted by slow speeds, scale constraints, and poor material quality, which makes it unreliable as a mainstream manufacturing process. With rapid liquid printing, manufacturing can be reimagined as an artistic experience unlimited by scale or gravity, asking us to rethink design, production, uniformity, and product life-cycles.
A strong attraction for the different materials and their intrinsic features has always guided my work as a designer. I have decided to dedicate a few years to research on materials. My intent is to try and rethink the way materials are used, as well as the production processes, using the possibilities made available by the new technologies.
To me, those technologies (Computer Numerical Controlled machines, 3D printers) are an integral part of the creative process. I like the idea of hijacking the use of those complex machines, to turn them into manual experimenting tools. I favor an instinctive approach, working more on hardware than software. The primary aim of my research is to produce knowledge, to generate new aesthetics. When working on a process, I try to explore it in depth, in order to create a rich repertoire of shapes and possibilities. This inventory then nourishes my world as a designer.
Implementation comes only after research, in particular through collaborations with companies, that see potentialities in my work to develop a product.