Are 3D-Printed Ceramics the Future of Architecture?

As design visualization software becomes more ubiquitous and easier to use, the novelty of digital form for the sake of digital form is wearing off. These exponentially evolving conception and fabrication techniques that can now be applied to existing design problems that do not traditionally involve digital technologies bring a fresh perspective to an established craft. Research initiative Data Clay looks at the ways in which leading practitioners are experimenting at the intersection of digital technology and ceramics. The range of diverse products and sculptural forms to be developed under this organization are inspired by a combination of design, art and architectural sensibilities. Curators Del Harrow and Joshua G. Stein explain that these new artisans are drawn to clay’s unfamiliarity on a larger scale and its unique material properties that make it more difficult to predict, including slump and shrinkage. While it is not as easy to work with as more stable materials such as concrete, engineered wood and steel, clay has more potential for experimentation when it comes to translating the digital to the physical. Because clay has been ...
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