Szivos says the studio is particularly concerned with projects which mix research and ideas, and they learn from those projects to undertake designs for their client-based work. In 2012, SOFTlab was awarded the Architectural League Prize for Young Architects & Designers and in 2010, they were selected for the New Practices New York award by the AIA.
SOFTlab has produced design projects and collaborated with various artists, designers and institutions such as MoMA, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The New Museum, Columbia University and Pratt Institute as well as exhibiting work in galleries throughout New York City.
Now with a project they call Cumulus, an interactive installation which reacts to sound with light, via 3D printed cell-like forms meant to mimic the erratic behavior of clouds and lightning, they’ve continued their work in pressing against the limits of digital design and fabrication.
According to Szivos, the “sponge-like structure relies on redundancies and connections that cannot be achieved from a grid to give it a soft, cloud like shape.”
A network of irregular shapes “imbues the piece with a playful personality as it reacts in unpredictable ways to environmental sound.”
As the sound in the space reaches a certain volume, Cumulus is activated and the light within the pieces follows a path through one of the connecting segments. Szivos says the duration of the time a path is lit is dictated by the volume of the sound that activates it, and a simple algorithm creates a wide range of effects from long, lightning-like exposures triggered by sporadic, low frequency sounds to a “chatter” reminiscent of static electrical discharge as people’s voices activate the piece from below.
A series of physical and digital systems working together, and the construction of the piece involved connecting 200 acrylic segments with more than 100 unique, 3D printed joints.
Hidden within Cumulus, a network of “addressable” LED strands create the lighting effects, and more than 70 meters of LEDs were used to finish off the overall product.
According to Szivos, the behaviors and reactions to sound were programmed using Processing, and a UI was built to analysis them and then to communicate with a set of three Arduino microcontrollers which disperse signals to activate individual LEDs.
Cumulus is now installed at the RAB gallery in New York’s Chelsea arts district at 535 W 24th Street. The exhibit runs through July 3rd, and it’s open to the public on weekdays from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.
What do you think of the way Cumulus uses 3D printing to create its lighting-like effects? Do you know of any other art projects which use 3D printing to make them possible? Let us know in the Lightning With 3D Printing and Sound forum thread on 3DPB.com.
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Stay up-to-date on all the latest news from the 3D printing industry and receive information and offers from third party vendors.
You May Also Like
CELLINK Bioprinter Enables Bioprinted Hair Follicles for Skin Regeneration and More
In a landmark achievement, researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York have successfully 3D-printed hair follicles in lab-grown human skin tissue, marking a significant advancement in the field of...
Iowa Demolishes Its First 3D Printed Home
In May 2023, the city of Muscatine, Iowa embarked on an ambitious plan to construct 3D printed homes. The weekend before Thanksgiving, the first such home was demolished. This project,...
BICO’s Revival: A Fresh Era with Maria Forss at the Helm
Swedish biotech company BICO (STO: BICO) has been making waves in the industry recently. Ever since Maria Forss assumed the role of CEO in November 2023, the company seems to...
3D Printing Webinar and Event Roundup: November 26, 2023
Things are getting busy again in terms of 3D printing webinars and events! This week is the RSNA annual meeting, the World Manufacturing Forum, and more. HP is holding an...
Upload your 3D Models and get them printed quickly and efficiently.