ART OR THE FUTURE OF CONSTRUCTION? 3D PRINTED WALLS CAN BE BOTH

What does building look like when the full power of 3D printing is unleashed? At Branch Technology, we have just started to explore what's possible using our freeform 3D printing technology, Cellular Fabrication™. The results, thus far, have been pretty spectacular. 


Beauty through Complexity and Customization

One of the core advantages of 3D printing is that it allows for customization and complexity. This means that we no longer have to accept boring, cookie-cutter designs. So when Branch starts to apply this technology to building and construction, the results blur the border between art and function.

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Pictured above is one of our first prototypes of an interior wall. Although it looks as though it might be at home in a modern art museum (around the office, it is affectionately referred to as "Star Wars"), its purpose is to start us thinking about what is possible when geometric freedom is applied to construction. 

It is easy to think that this wall might have come from the hands of a sculptor, but underneath a layer of paint and sheet-rock mud (and filled with common construction insulating spray foam) is a 3D printed scaffold.

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The naked, 3D printed scaffold of a very similar design is pictured above. Without the insulating foam, sheet-rock mud and paint, the beauty of the form is still plainly evident.

Although printed out of plastic, the scaffold is very strong. In fact, many visitors have noticed its resemblance to a chair and have decided to test that function: each time it has passed the test with flying colors... for even the largest of visitors. Despite this strength, the scaffold is incredibly light and is easily picked up by one person. 


We hope these images serve as a muse for designers and architects. The point is not to ask what a wall has to look like, but rather, what could a wall look like? We're just starting to explore the possibilities, but need help to push the limits.

If you are interested in helping us discover the world of possible, sign up to receive information about our upcoming competition. 

Karen Culp