Let’s take a look at one of the latest applications of 3D printing in art—in order to commemorate the history of the native Te Arawa (Maori Trava tribe), a magnificent sculpture will be erected in Rotorua, New Zealand. It was designed by the New Zealand Maori Arts and Crafts Institute, and the final specifications are about 12 meters high and 800 kilograms in weight.
Because the sculpture is so huge, the printing takes 16,500 hours to complete, and 63 kilometers of PLA wire will be used. However, they are still very confident and plan to run the printouts around the clock, 21 hours a day. After completion, they will also coat the sculpture with a layer of carbon fiber to improve its strength and durability.
If all goes well, the project will cost 570,000 New Zealand dollars (approximately 2.63 million RMB) and is expected to be completed in August 2018. Then, it will be placed at Hemo Gorge, the southern entrance of Rotorua, as a sign to welcome visitors. "This work is inspired by traditional whakairo rākau wood carvings, but it will be presented in a modern way." said Stacy Gordine, head of the National Institute of Bone Sculptures at the Maori Arts and Crafts Institute in New Zealand.
It is worth mentioning that the Maori Arts and Crafts Institute initially wanted to use stainless steel to build this sculpture, but later encountered some problems. The local council proposed an alternative to using 3D printing technology. In addition, this also brings huge benefits to the sculpture-if stainless steel is used, it will weigh up to 12 tons, and transportation will be very difficult.