Eos 3D Printed Egg 300
FourfourSixSix, a London-based international architecture practice, has been named key sponsor of the world’s biggest egg hunt, The Fabergé Big Egg Hunt, which is taking place this Easter. The architects worked with EOS, a leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, and Ogle Models, a rapid prototyping and model making specialist, to create a laser-sintered plastic egg that is highly intricate in structure, yet contemporary and sculptural.
From 21st February, the UK capital becomes home to 200 giant, uniquely crafted Easter eggs, of which the laser-sintered egg will be one. They are all destined to become highly collectible works of art and will be available to buy at auction, with proceeds going to Action for Children and Elephant Family, the UK’s biggest funder for the endangered Asian elephant. It is hoped that up to £2 million will be raised.
Members of the public will be able to hunt down the strategically placed, giant eggs, which have been exclusively designed, bejewelled and decorated by some of the world’s leading artists, architects, jewellers and designers including Mulberry, Sir Ridley Scott, Zandra Rhodes, Diane Von Furstenberg, Marc Quinn, Bruce Oldfield, The Chapman Brothers, Theo Fennell, William Curley (who has designed the world’s most expensive chocolate egg), Bompas and Parr and Polly Morgan.
The collaboration between Fourfoursixsix, EOS and Ogle Models has facilitated the design and construction of an exceptional piece that is at the forefront of three dimensional design and printing methods, again showing that additive manufacturing can deliver outstanding results that are impossible to create using any other method of manufacture.
The architectural design concept
Daniel Welham of Fourfoursixsix explains their design approach for the egg: “We decided to consciously move away from the mere development of a surface treatment to the egg. The geometry provided us with the perfect platform to begin applying a set of architectural principles to the overall form. Through this process we played with structure, light and shadow and began to develop a three dimensional architectural terrain.”
He adds: “Conceptually, the design works around a rational grid of components that have been configured to react to both light and scale across the surface of the egg. Each component incorporates an aperture within its design that can adjust to control the amount of light entering the internal space of the form.”
Within Fourfoursixsix, 3D design is an integral part of the design process. The firm was excited by the potential this project held to exploit these modern design methods.
Designing and manufacturing the egg was an opportunity to combine this technology with the latest additive manufacturing processes, in this case layer-by-layer laser-sintering, to create a highly intricate sculptural form that is both contemporary and unique. The format allowed Fourfoursixsix to apply a playful and avant-garde approach to the treatment of the piece, free from the limitations of more formal construction approaches.
The manufacturing process
Stuart Jackson, Regional Manager for the UK at EOS explains why the company did not hesitate to join this exciting project: “As a mainly engineering-driven company, we normally focus on industry applications in aerospace, medical, automotive and the like. The egg is a perfect example for laser-sintering applications to catch people’s imagination on another level. Here, as with all other cases, the design drives the manufacturing and not vice versa. Parts can be created that would not have been possible with conventional manufacturing technologies. As such, this laser-sintered egg is a perfect example for the vast possibilities the technology can offer.”