Professor Neri Oxman, Architect, Designer and Professor of Media, Arts and Science at MIT, in collaboration with Professor W. Craig Carter, Department of Materials Science and Engineering of MIT Lab, continues to explore new worlds of sight and sound with the Objet500 Connex3 Color Multi-material 3D Printer: ow.ly/v1YxU. In this exclusive interview, Neri describes her vision and surprising inspiration for the ground-breaking Gemini acoustic chaise. This is her first piece to combine both traditional and additive manufacturing processes. Is it furniture? Is it art? Is it a musical instrument? You decide after watching this thought-provoking clip. For more information on Stratasys 3D Printers: ow.ly/v20F6 For more about Neri Oxman and her work: ow.ly/v29kF Transcript Neri Oxman "The first thought that occured to me was that the human voice is first expressed in birth, and of course thoughts about the womb and the prenatal environment came to mind. I thought about the image of Odyssey 2001 and that baby, that fetus, that's encapsulated inside a cosmos, encapsulated inside a womb that is a planet, and that is what I wanted to communicate through Gemini. This is the first time, really, that I've, together with my collaborator Professor Craig Carter from the Department of Material Science and Engineering at MIT, it's the first time that we've designed a chaise that is so large in scale and also a chaise that combines between different digital fabrication technologies. 3D printing with the Connex3 materials was magical. It was a kind of an alchemy, because you can really print an instrument, a musical instrument as an architectural piece. Dreaming about what it means to sit inside, or to lie down inside a musical instrument has inspired us to explore the potential of varying material composition to achieve different types of acoustical effects. Boris Belocon The new concept allowed us, the user, control 3 different degrees of level, three different parameters. The first one is color. Between magenta and yellow are our shades. The second one is transparency level. You can see it here, and the last one is rigidity of material. As you can see, each part, each bubble of the print has different, different opacity, different shore value and different color. Neri Oxman The chaise is designed using curved surfaces that tend to reflect the sound inwards. The surface structure scatters the sound and reflects it into the 3D printed skin that absorbs that sound and creates a sound absorbing, a very very quite and calm environment. We've used 44 materials, 44 digital materials with preset mechanical combinations to vary the degree of elasticity, thereby varying the degree of sound absorbance depending on curvature. The Connex3 really introduces the designer to a pallet that is endless, because one can think about varying the structural properties, the environmental properties, the acoustical properties, perhaps even the fragrance of the material itself. One can think about those materials as a kind of a cooking process with different spices and different smells and different effects, and it's just endless.