From cookie cutters, vases, and gardening collections to clothing hangers, lamps, and kitchenware, it seems that 3D printed homeware is all the rage these days. New York designer Joe Doucet, referred to as “the Living Blueprint for the 21st Century Designer” by Forbes, recently used the technology to create a new collection of 3D printed homeware for a brand new exhibition at the city’s Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum.
Doucet designed the 3D printed set of knobby, greyscale cookware, cutlery, serving, and storage capsules specifically for the museum’s Tablescapes: Designs for Dining Showcase. The understated yet attractive collection, according to a statement from Doucet, was “designed with limited resources in mind” in order “to represent dining in the 21st century.
In addition to co-founding the OTHR design brand in 2016 and being named the only ever AvantGuardian for Design by Surface Magazine, Doucet also received an honor in his field last year: he was named the 2017 winner of the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Award as Product Designer.
“We are an award-winning multidisciplinary practice who believe that design is a tool to create opportunities,” Doucet’s website reads. “We believe that creative vision can transform an object into an obsession, a product into a paragon and a business into a brand. We believe that by partnering with the world’s most exciting brands, we can create innovative ways for product design, packaging, architecture, retail design, furniture and technology to shape tomorrow.”
The Cooper Hewitt, located on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, is a big fan of Doucet’s work, and commissioned the 3D printed prototypes in the collection for the Tablescapes showcase, which will be available to view at the museum until April 14, 2019.
The 3D printed vessels can actually be used to perform several different functions for food service and preparation; for instance, the lids are used as normal to seal the bowls in order to keep their contents fresh inside, but they can also be used as trivets and plates as well.
Doucet explained, “By creating hybrid vessels, which act as cooking, serving and storage for food, we eliminate the need to use separate items for each step and avoid wasting potable water to clean each item between uses.”
The full 3D printed collection was made out of two different polymers by New York-based Shapeways. Shapeways also lent the museum its 3D printing equipment in order to demonstrate the process during the exhibit.
Doucet told Dezeen about the 3D printed prototype vessels, “They are envisioned to be in 3D-printed steel and 3D-printed glass in the near future, but the prototypes were made with current commercial technology.”
Doucet created some of his own pieces for the 3D printed product range, such as way-finding running gloves, and asked others, such as Yonoh, Phillippe Malouin, and Claesson Koivisto Rune to help add to the homeware collection as week.
The knobbly bumps that cover the entirety of the 3D printed vessels help provide grip, and are also meant to evenly spread heat during cooking, and then dissipate the warmth quickly during serving.
The 3D printed homeware collection also promotes cross-cultural dining, as it also includes a set of chopsticks in addition to the more typical Western utensils.
This is not Doucet’s first experience with 3D printing. The designer has used the technology in the past, such as when he created a capsule collection of 3D knitted ties with Thursday Finest. 3D printing makes it possible for items, such as utensils and dishes, to be customized specifically for the user, in terms of both scale and the hand they use to eat.
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