MX3D, based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, has collaborated with artists Paolo Albertelli and Mariagrazia Abbaldo of Studio C&C, Turin, Italy, on the sculpture ‘The Whale Pass’, which is on show at the ‘Animals at Court’ exhibition within the Royal Gardens in Turin. The sculpture is intended to bring attention to the many forms of life that inhabit our planet, and is said to meet two of the strategic objectives of the UN Agenda 2030 for the sustainable development of human societies in the next decade: life underwater and life on earth.
The Whale Pass consists of three pieces – head, fin and tail – which weigh a total of 880 kg. The three parts were produced via Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing (WAAM), a wire-based Directed Energy Deposition (DED) process, in pieces up to 3 m before being manually welded together to create final pieces of nearly 5 m. Through the use of MX3D’s WAAM technology, the stainless steel pieces were able to have a resultant texture of a real whale, which the artists felt added a new dimension to the piece. The final pieces were post-processed to include marble, representing ice and the whale’s stomach.
“MX3D’s robotic 3D metal printing technology provides a smart and digital production solution. It allows for higher form and size flexibility in shapes and textures, higher deposition rate, and reduction of material use and waste, making it highly relevant to achieving sustainable goals of many different industries, companies, and organisations,” stated Gijs van der Velden, CEO at MX3D.
Albertelli added, “The installation of the whales is a project that I have always imagined in large parks because it transforms the horizon line with the imaginary depth of what cannot be seen. The backs of the whales resting on the lawn emerge from the earth. The rhythm of the puffs and of the whistles are different from each other, sudden, cross diagonally: they evoke the breath, the calm path of living semi-hidden presences. It is a space for an imaginary outside the rules of the usual paths.”
Elsewhere in the art world, MX3D has collaborated with Ricardo Regazzoni on ‘Tresse’ and Joris Laarman Lab on ‘Dragon Bench’, ‘Butterfly Screen’ and ‘Gradient Screen’.