Aalto University Digital Design Laboratory, }ADD{

3D printing was used in its conventional sense in the design process to prototype forms and work with manufacturers such as I.S. Mäkinen with the Hanasaari Sofabed or Puutyö Rajala for the wood furniture. But more importantly, it was used to directly produce a collection of unique lights in collaboration with SAAS Instruments Ltd. The 3D printed lights are each one a unique individual. In the future, the process will be used as a method of inviting Finnish and Swedish designers to contribute their own designs to the collection. 3D printing also gives a possibility of creating designs related to a particular event at Hanasaari.

The most extensive use of 3D printing was made in the creation of the molds for casting of formally complex metal components, such as the brass alloy legs for the Sira Chair and the Jeff Lounge Chair – in global co-operation between Finland and India. The metal casting with the help of 3D prints was done by craftsmen in Mumbai, who have generations of experience in their trade but are to a large degree illiterate. The technology allowed the designers to communicate with them directly by sending a 3D file to be printed in Mumbai, or by sending a 3D print. 3D printed forms enabled a unique communication and collaboration through objects, benefiting both parties. It gave meaningful well paid work for skillful Indian craftsmen, and Hanasaari an opportunity to manufacture high craft furniture in limited series. It was a perfect combination of high tech, high education design work done in Finland, and traditional craft work done in India. It made the project uniquely Nordic and international.

Ateljé SOTAMAA, Kivi Sotamaa & Tuuli Sotamaa

Kivi Sotamaa, Design Director
Ashish Mohite, Design Research