Ron Arad was interviewed about his use of rapid-prototyping technology to coincide with the Design Museum‘s The Future is Here exhibition, currently displaying some of his pioneering and more recent 3D-printed work.
“I discovered [3D printing] when it was called rapid prototyping… and I thought ‘here’s another way of making things’,” he says. ”Things are very fast, you can draw something in the morning and print it in the evening.”
Currently exhibited at the museum, Arad’s Not Made by Hand, Not Made in China collection of spiralling, flexible 3D-printed designs was launched during Milan design week in 2000.
“I remember showing it to [designer] Achille Castiglioni when he came to see it,” says Arad. “I remember taking the time and explaining to him what it is, and I thought ‘this is great, I have something new to teach one of my heroes’.”
He reminisces about how exciting it was to experiment with the new materials and machinery, but says over time it was overused just as synthesisers were in music.
“The technology completely took over the studio and it was the most interesting thing we were dealing with, and predictably it became commonplace,” he remembers. ”Synthesisers were abused completely and so is this technology we’re talking about.” …