Dunes by Philippe Malouin
for 1882 Ltd

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Dunes by Philippe Malouin for 1882 Ltd

London Design Festival 2013: designer Philippe Malouin built an analogue 3D printer to create moulds from piles of sugar for this range of plates and bowls (+ movie).

The Dunes collection by Canadian designer Philippe Malouin has been commissioned for Staffordshire ceramics company 1882 Ltd.

Malouin's custom-made machine features a box frame and a wooden turntable that is powered by a small motor and controlled by a computer.

Grains of sugar are poured into a funnel and fall onto a spinning cylinder positioned on the turntable beneath, where they pile up to form structures like cylindrical sand dunes.

The resulting shape was used to make a silicone negative, then cast in plaster and given to 1882 to produce in bone china. The final bone china pieces retain a sandy texture and have been finished with a matte glaze.

Dunes by Philippe Malouin for 1882 Ltd

Originally Malouin tried using sand, however explained the material was difficult to use. "I originally started to try and 'freeze' these sand dunes by spraying resin onto them, but each time I would try and cast the resulting shape with silicone, the sand would stick to the cast and the shape would be altered," said Malouin.

He later realised that sugar was the perfect substitute, as any grains clinging to the silicone could be washed away with water.

Dunes by Philippe Malouin for 1882 Ltd

The printer created shapes that Malouin said could not be designed by hand or a computer and was perfect for creating plates and bowls. "All that was needed was to change the diameter of the sand dune in order to create a smaller dish," Malouin told Dezeen.

Dunes by Philippe Malouin for 1882 Ltd

"I was interested in designing the process that would produce the shape of the dishes. Not necessarily designing the dish directly," said Malouin.

Here's a video showing the making process:

The Dunes collection is on display - alongside Max Lamb's crockery made from lumps of plaster - at the Sand & Clay exhibition at Paper Tiger, The Basement, 10 Exhibition Road, SW7 2HF until 22 September.

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Dunes by Philippe Malouin for 1882 Ltd

Photographs are by Eva Feldkamp.

Here's some additional information from the gallery:


Dunes by Philippe Malouin

Dunes is a stunning collection of fine bone china tableware featuring skillfully hand-crafted plates and bowls from one of the design world’s most applauded new talents. Slip-cast from plaster models, the collection maximises Malouin's beautifully minimalistic patterns through analogue 3D printing. The analogue 3d printer made by Malouin, creates shapes that cannot be designed by hand or computer. Only movement, imperfection and randomised material deposition form the pieces. The shapes formed are carefully utilised and transformed into functional china pieces, highlighting the skill of the craftsman and creating a collection that wonderfully exemplifies its title of - Dunes.

About 1882 Ltd

1882 Ltd. is thrilled to announce their new collections for September 2013, fusing 130 years of traditional British heritage with fresh and contemporary new designs. The collections feature works from some of the world’s leading talents. These included an extended collection of 'Crockery' by Max Lamb, 'Fragile Hearts' by Mr Brainwash, 'Standard Ware' by Fort Standard and 'Gashu' by Alan Hughes and 'Dunes' by Philippe Malouin: all made of fine bone china, harnessing the tradition of the company originally set-up by the Johnson Brothers in the heart of the Stoke-on-Trent potteries in 1882. To this day, 1882 Ltd. remains a family business following its rebirth in 2011 by Emily Johnson and her father Christopher.

  • beatrice

    What does the computer do? Looks like the motor is just spinning?