Founded in 2002 by Claire Warnier and Dries Verbruggen, Unfold studio out of Belgium has consistently innovated in the world of 3D printing. From designing mobile printing stations to developing printers for porcelain manufacturing, the team leverages an international community of makers who are dedicated to the growing medium. Showing at the Istanbul Design Biennial, Unfold presented two projects that further advance 3D printing.
Inspired by the carts used by Berlin's currywürst vendors, Kiosk 2.0 builds off of the success of Kiosk as a mobile 3D printing station that brings design out of the studio and onto the streets. Immediate, accessible and open-sourced, the cart promises to produce next-generation bootleg creations from Canal Street to Leicester Square. The customer-centric approach would also allow for spur of the moment custom requests, and Kiosk 2.0 incorporates access to the shared database of 3D designs.
The age-old provenance of skilled craftsmen, pottery was altered in 2010 when Unfold adapted it to 3D printing in l'artisan Électronique, an open-source printer that deposits soft clay as it builds vessels. The machine has received adulation from the design community, marking an essential way in which 3D printing has moved beyond plastic models. The technology behind the machine is open-source, with the hope that programmers will share their files with printers around the world.
For Istanbul, Unfold has established Stratigraphic Manufactury, a global network of artisans, programmers and 3D model users. The company presented a line of porcelain that was constructed by artisans from throughout the world based on files received through e-mails. The 3D files themselves are created by a virtual pottery wheel, which allows craftsmen to turn and shape the design in real space. Stratigraphic Manufactury took the form of a workspace and gallery at Adhocracy where the technology and finished products were presented together.
Images by Josh Rubin