"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

Designer Ron Arad compares the overuse of 3D printing today to how musicians "abused" synthesisers in this movie made by Alice Masters for London's Design Museum.

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

Ron Arad was interviewed about his use of rapid-prototyping technology to coincide with the Design Museum's The Future is Here exhibition, currently displaying some of his pioneering and more recent 3D-printed work.

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

"I discovered [3D printing] when it was called rapid prototyping... and I thought 'here's another way of making things'," he says. "Things are very fast, you can draw something in the morning and print it in the evening."

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

Currently exhibited at the museum, Arad's Not Made by Hand, Not Made in China collection of spiralling, flexible 3D-printed designs was launched during Milan design week in 2000.

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

"I remember showing it to [designer] Achille Castiglioni when he came to see it," says Arad. "I remember taking the time and explaining to him what it is, and I thought 'this is great, I have something new to teach one of my heroes'."

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

He reminisces about how exciting it was to experiment with the new materials and machinery, but says over time it was overused just as synthesisers were in music.

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

"The technology completely took over the studio and it was the most interesting thing we were dealing with, and predictably it became commonplace," he remembers. "Synthesisers were abused completely and so is this technology we're talking about."

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

In the movie he also talks about his range of glasses made entirely from selective laser sintered (SLS) nylon powder, launched in Milan earlier this year and also part of the exhibit.

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

"Usually when you make eyewear it has a lot of components and a lot of tedious work with little things, screws, hinges," he says. "We have the whole collection that is monolithic, just one material."

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

Finally, he ponders everyday uses for the technology in the future: "Maybe in the future the plumber will have a machine in his van that will just print the S-pipe according to his needs in the van."

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

Dezeen also interviewed Arad about his 3D-printed eyewear as part of our Dezeen and MINI World Tour coverage of this year's Milan design week.

"3D printing is abused" - Ron Arad

The Future is Here was created in partnership with the Technology Strategy Board and continues at London's Design Museum until 29 October 2013.

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