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CELOSÍACOSÍDA EXPERIMENTS IN CERAMIC LATTICEWORK

Kritika Dhanda | Alkistis Mavroeidi | Jake Rudin


Permission is granted to Harvard University to retain, use, and distribute a limited number of copies of this publication, together with the right to require its publication for archival use.


CELOSĂ?ACOSĂ?DA Kritika Dhanda | Alkistis Mavroeidi | Jake Rudin

ADVISORS Leire Asensio Villoria Carlos Felix Raspall Galli

A research paper presented in partial fulfillment of SCI 0631700 -- Material Practice as Research: Digital Design and Fabrication


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INTRODUCTION Research Hypothesis. Team Members. Design Goals.

PRECEDENTS Visual Permeability. Aggregation. The Game. Evaporative Cooling. Radiative Heating.

DESIGN Design Concept. Basic Component. Aggregation Studies.

FABRICATION Ceramic Processes. Mold Making. Slip casting. Drilling. Firing. Lighting. Successes. Failures.

ASSEMBLY Mock-up. Aggregation. Final Assembly. Completion.

BIBLIOGRAPHY Sources. Figures. Precedents.


Initial Research Concept Component

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INTRODUCTION Research Hypothesis. Team Members. Design Goals.

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RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS Unfamiliar with many of the properties and methods of working with ceramics -- armed only with a knowledge of the material research process and a substantial collective design background -- the goal of this project was to unite a large-scale architectural agenda with an existing vocabulary of techniques from the ceramics realm. With a focus on light, visual permeability and the use of digital tools to aid in the design process, Celosía Cosída began with the idea that we wanted to create an adaptive, architectural screen with a large number of potential functions and configurations. The idea of modularity quickly came to be another key point of the research as the process of slip casting and creating a series of “molds and multiples” presented itself as the obvious choice for integrating digital fabrication and ceramics. The hypothesis of the research phase ultimately became that with a single mold, varying only the perforations that allowed light and air to pass through the module, we could create a highly-versatile, visually-elegant screen that incorporated lighting elements and even ways of conditioning a space through radiative heating or evaporative cooling. Though the spatial conditioning was deemed to be an unreasonable endeavor with ceramics at this scale and with the given timeframe of the research, the question of how to do it remains an interesting problem and is explored -- though not to any full extent -- in this document.

GOALS

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RADIANT HEATING

SLIP CAST

MANY VARIATIONS

MODULAR

EVAPORATIVE COOLING

LIGHTING


TEAM MEMBERS Kritika Dhanda is an MDes student in Art, Design and the Public Domain at Harvard University. Her education as an architect has provided her with strategic thought process that has opened many doors into the design industry ranging from architecture and furniture design to photography, graphic and interactive design.

Alkistis Mavroeidi is an MDes student in Technology at Harvard University and a graduate of the Architectural Engineering program at National Technical University of Athens. Her mathematical background and her experience with computational design processes have grown her interest in technological applications in architecture and design.

Jake Rudin is an MDes student in Technology at Harvard University

and a graduate of the B.Arch program at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. He is interested in the intersection of architecture, theory and creation, allowing the creation of an object or system to heavily inform the final design, and applying this to the fields of building technology, computation, parametric design, and digital fabrication.

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Polymorph by Jenny Sabin Studio

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PRECEDENTS Visual Permeability. Aggregation. The Game. Evaporative Cooling. Radiative Heating.

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Porcelain Wall Akiko Yanagimoto & Moriko Kira


VISUAL PERMEABILITY Akiko Yanagimoto and Moriko Kira have explored the various possible applications of ceramics in the context of architecture. The porcelain wall is composed from a number of cylinders, whose diameter is calculated in order to provide more or less visual permeability. The transparency effect creates an image -a snapshot of 2 people working in a kitchen. The length of the cylinders is also a parameter that influences the visual effect of the wall. Inspired by the manipulation of a cylinder for visual purposes, we became interested in the the changing textures and openings that could create a series of unique and varied results. The question of vertical or horizontal stacking is highly connected to these features, as it defines the way the cylinder can be manipulated.

Ceramic Lamp by Rachel Nadler Ceramics

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Polymorph Jenny Sabin Studio


AGGREGATION This project showcases next steps in the integration of complex phenomena towards the design, production, and digital fabrication of ceramic form in the design arts and architecture. This work includes advances in digital technology, digital fabrication, advanced geometry, and material practices in arts, crafts, and design disciplines. Techniques in parametric and associative environments are incorporated with feedback derived from material constraints as well as performance assessments. The project interrogates the physical interface between networking behavior and fabricated material assemblies in order to address novel applications of nonstandard ceramic components towards the production of 3D textured prototypes and systems. The production of ceramic blocks and tiles has a vast technological and design history. Ceramic modules of standard measurement have been used as a building block and replacement of stone for centuries. Ceramic bricks and tiles, so ubiquitous in their application in the built environment, have surprisingly lacked recognition as a viable building component in contemporary architecture practice until now. Industrial and technological advances have shown us that ceramic production can be manual, mechanical, and now digital.

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Tangle Toy Richard X. Zawitz


THE TANGLE TOY A Tangle Toy is more than just a toy- it is twistable energy that enables a free flow of creativity from your mind. Technically, a Tangle is a series of 90-degree curves, connected and able to pivot at each joint. It has no beginning and no end--just continuous motion. People refer to the Tangle as “that fun, twisty thing!� because Tangles have endless uses and serve a variety of different purposes. It can be a puzzle, a movable sculpture, a desktop toy, a fidget, a brain tool, an anti-stress device, a teacher supply, or even a cosmic art toy with special powers! The possibilities are limitless!

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EVAPORATIVE COOLING The exterior columns, are made of terra cotta (clay) with a metallic core that when in contact with water create air currents and a microclimate that has a cooling effect on the building. This is an important design feature when you’re facing 40ºC heat. The roof is also equipped with solar heat and rainwater collectors. The process is clear and simple. The vertical elements may be manufactured in a workshop. They have a metallic core clad in pieces made of clay that, in contact with water, absorbs it generating air currents that act as microclimates (see corresponding project descriptions and schemes).Its bracing, to ensure structural unity, is very simple and based on the same method used in many nurseries to maintain trunks vertical.

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Spanish Pavilion Expo Zaragoza by Francisco Mangado


RADIATIVE HEATING The ceramic infrared radiator consists of a resistance heating wire which is fully embedded in adequate ceramic material. By being fully embedded the energy produced is transferred to the ceramic material. This also protects the wire against overheating and extends its lifespan. The material in which the wire is embedded is electrically non-conducting and should have very good absorption and emission characteristics which allow it to radiate or emit in the desired range of wavelengths. These are factors which allow ceramic radiators to be produced in a large variety of geometric forms. Ceramic infrared radiators are ceramic bodies which, through the use of a heating wire, use a part of their surface to produce IR radiation. It is also possible to have a thermocouple embedded in the ceramic material in direct proximity to the heating wire. The inventor of the above mentioned ceramic heater is the company Elstein-Werk from Germany. For the basic model of the ceramic radiator as a bulb with screwcap, the patent for Elstein was issued at 24 March 1949. Concomitantly there was the development of laminar ceramic infrared radiators in order to realize the construction of large heating panels. The patent for these panel heaters was issued at 8 March 1950 for Elstein-Werk. The worldwide usage of the word “Elsteinheater� is the generic term for it.

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ASSEMBLY STRING

.75” VINYL TUBING

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DESIGN Design Concept. Basic Component. Aggregation Studies.

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DESIGN CONCEPT

First Idea for Cylindrical Component

Curved Cylinder

Combined Perforations and Curvature

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From the beginning of the design process, we were intrigued by the possibilities offered by a cylindrical shape. We wanted to explore the different results that are made possible by the inherent flexibility that rotation offers in relation to creating visual permeability. We experimented with both vertical and horizontal stacking patterns, starting with a simple cylinder and addin curvature as we moved on. Our final component consists of a 90-degree curved pipe, with the dimensions as shown above. Aside from the curved component, our formation required a T-shaped piece, that would connect the end points on the floor and on the ceiling.


BASE COMPONENTS

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T-MODULE x12

UTILITIES + STRUCTURE

C-MODULE x76

COMPRESSION RING 28


PERFORATED MODULE

ASSEMBLY STRING

.875” VINYL TUBING

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MANUAL AGGREGATION SCRIPT

In order to create a more easily manipulated aggregation model, we wanted to make a script that defined the position of each piece by the end side of the previous one, and a rotation angle that would be define by us. This logic results in a very customizable formation, in which changing the rotation angle of one piece, changes all of the following ones as well.

This script was created using a basic cluster, that used the previous curve as an input parameter and build the next on based on that.

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RANDOM AGGREGATION SCRIPT Using the same technique as in the manual formation scripts, with each component using as base the previous one, we explored the possibility of a generated randomised formation. An interesting game of resulting formations was created by an input that was feeding randomly our script with rotation angles. This could be used to populate a 3d space in very interesting ways and thus manifest the limitless possibilities that this cylindrical base component offers.

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END POINTS SCRIPT

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Another way in which we tried to approach the subject was by creating a script that would automatically produce a line between two points, by aggregating our base component.

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AGGREGATION TESTING After the basic component was defined, we tried to create self-supporting aggregation forms, and/or combined forms that would support each other through their aggregations. This proved challenging in many ways, because of the difficulty in combing both the rotation properties and the structural sufficiency of the formation. In other words, the most structurally efficient way of stacking the component pieces, were the ones that didn’t take advantage of the flexibility of the rotating joints. Collision detection was also an isssue to be studied, since the digital models could prove deceiving when it comes to detecting intersecting pieces. 37


PHYSICAL MODELS In order to test a number of aggregations through a physical model, we needed to find an easy way to produce a large number of quarter-circle pieces. Shower rings are nonexpensive and easy to cut, so we used them as a basic material for our models. Then we played around with different forms, trying to figure out which of them were self supporting and which could easily aggregate with one another. These models helped us understand the physics of the digital models in a much more clear way.

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Through tests with physical models, horizontal aggregations with cylindrical pieces were problematic because they mean minimum points of contact between stacking pieces. We also realized that in order to satisfy the condition of structural sufficiency, we were greatly limiting the design possibilities that our component could produce. Thus, we decided to further explore a vertical aggregation design.

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VERTICAL AGGREGATIONS

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After a few test that proved the horizontal stacking very problematic, we came up with the idea of a room radiator that would stack vertically and create a screen of clay components that would hang curtain-like from the ceiling. Thus we started testing vertical aggregation, in order to study the possible form of such an installation. Vertical aggregations allowed us to further explore the notion of visual permeability, this time not on the component scale, but on the whole structure scale. Different rotation angles and different component diameters created different visual effects, ranging in density.

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Perforation and Light Experiments

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FABRICATION Ceramic Processes. Mold Making. Slip casting. Drilling. Firing. Lighting. Successes. Failures.

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Drill

Slip Cast

Plaster Mold

Plaster Mold Pour

Mill Foam Positive

PRODUCTION WORKFLOW


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Hang

Glue

String

Cone 6 Firing

Sanding

Cone 06 Bisque Firing


MOLD MAKING PROCESS

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First step is the construction of a frame for the first foam pieace that leaves on average 2 inches gap from the edges of the foam piece. The foam piece is glued with a weak adhesive, so as to prevent movement during the casting process, and then sprayed with soap.

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In order to mix the correct amount of plaster we measure carefully the dimensions of the constructed frame and use the predefined ratio of plaster and water mix.

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After the plaster is mixed and agitated for 6 minutes, we pour it over the securely clamped frame and we leave it to rest. Caution must be taken for the piece not to move from the bottom of the frame.

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The mold is left to dry 20-30 minutes, before it is removed from the frame and turned over. Since we are making a second half to these mold, we create small dents while it is still soft enough to do so, that will act as guides everytime we put together the 2 parts of the mold.

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Making of the 1st Part | 10.09 Ceramics Lab


CONSTRUCTION OF FINAL MOLDS

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For the second half of the mold, we repeat the process of creating a frame, this time around the mold we’ve already made. We carefully place the second half of the foam piece on top of the other and glue it with a weak adhesive.

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Plaster mix analogies are the same for this round as wel, therefore we repeat the process and pour the plaster mix. We seal any openings using clay.

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After the mix rests, we open the frames and let it dry. By removing excess clay we have openings on the mold pieces that we can use to separate them once they are cold, as well as the necessary openings for the slip casting process.

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The foam pieces separate easily from the plaster mold. The molds should be left to dry for at least 1 day before they can first be used for slip casting. Before the first use, they should also be sprayed with vinegar, to break down any oils left on the surface that may prevent the slip from absorbing.

Making of the 2nd Part | 10.09 Ceramics Lab

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MOLD EXPERIMENTS During our work process, a total of 9 molds was created, out of which 5 were used for the final production. The molds were updated to increase drying efficiency or to try new techniques on fabrication and glazing. _mold statistics

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Preparation of test mold for slipcasting

1 cup mold 1 test mold 2 beta version curved piece molds 3 final curved piece molds 2 final straight piece molds

Our tests included a mold that would produce a piece with the holes we wanted for light transfer. The idea was to have acrylic rods incorporated into the mold, so that they would not attach to the clay body when it was time for it to be removed. When implemented however, this idea didn’t produce the desirable results, as the mold was impossible to remove with the casted piece intact.

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Slipcasting into the test mold

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Slip appears to not attach to the acrylic rods

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Failure at removing the piece due to to its failure to unattach from the acrylic rods without breaking


SLIPCASTING PROCESS 1

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SLIPCASTING DATA After testing numerous variations of the slipcasting procedure we came up with the following conclusions about the slipcasting timings: _Slip type: We chose to work with porcelain because of its aesthetic as well as practical compatibility with our project. Porcelain’s clear color and they way it reflects light is ideal for our lighting implementation and it works very well with slipcasting. _Time slip is left in the mold: Affects the thickness and therefore the strength of the piece. Depends on the quality of the slip (thicker slip requires less time). If the thickness is too small the piece is more prone to deform or break. If it is too thick it becomes heavier, which works negatively on the structure and the efficiency of the joints. Optimum time: 10-12 minutes _Time piece is left in the mold: More drying time inside the mold significantly decreases the chances of the piece breaking, however it is costly timewise. Moreover, the piece needs not to dry too much in order fo the drilling procedure to be as efficient as possible. Optimum time: 45 minutes

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FANTASTIC FAILURES

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DRILLING

During our woodshop drilling experimentations, we tried to test how the casted pieces would react to the drilling process, in different states. We tested different techniques and hole sizes, trying to discover the optimum conditions that would result to minimum damage. Our tests included drilling holes on fired, bone dry and leather hard pieces. After the drilling experimentations, we concluded that by drilling the bone dry material rather than the already fired one, we had bigger chances of keeping the object intact. Even so, drilling is not an ideal solution for a bone dry material, since it will break off easily around the edges of the hole. Therefore, optimum conditions are for the pieces to be leather hard, within 1 hour of their removal from the molds. When drilling within the first hour that wasn’t possible, we kept the pieces in air tight conditions, to keep them from drying.

Results of Leather Hard Material Drilling

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10.14 Ceramics Lab 11.10 40 Kirkland


Results of Fired Material Drilling 09.29 Woodshop

Results of Bone Dry Material Drilling 09.29 Woodshop

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FIRING

The pieces were bisqued at Cone 06 first (firing time: 1 day), then sanded and finally fired at Cone 6 (firing time: 1 day). During the Cone 6 firing process, a number of pieces were deformed, especially if they had previously suffered deformation taht was repaired while the piece was still soft. Total Pieces Fired Test Firings Round 1 Firing Round 2 Firing

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109 10 (9%) 65 (60%) 34 (31%)

Slightly Deformed at Cone 6 11 (10%) Very Deformed at Cone 6 9 (8%) Broken During Firing Process 3 (3%)


SANDING

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First stage: Brushing off the excess clay parts around the holes

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Second stage: Thoroughly clearing out the holes using a more precise tool

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Third stage: Sanding out the rough texture

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GLAZING TESTS

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First the test pieces were thouroughly clean from dust and were waxed from one side. The wax prevents the glaze from sticking to that side. This was necessary so that the pieces would not stick to the bottom of the kiln, while they were being fired.

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The glaze has to be stirred until it becomes liquid enough to cover the pieces without leaving an excessively thick layer on them.

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We then dip the pieces into the glaze for 5 seconds and wait for the excess to drip off.

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The pieces are cleaned and left to dry until the firing.

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Clay stands for the glazed pieces for the firing process. These stands were made to prevent glazed pieces to sticking to the bottom of the kiln. However, they didn’t prove very effective since: _glaze was driping down the edges of the pieces making them signigicantly different in diameter _stand pieces got attached to the inside of the glazed pieces, making them impossible to remove. Glazing Test Pieces - Final Result

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10.02 Ceramics Lab

Tests performed on our component pieces showed that the glazing significantly deforms the pieces, which would be negative for our structure. The edge thickness is also changed in a non-uniformal way, which would make them impossible to connect properly. For these reasons we decided not to glaze our final production pieces. Size and deformation fired and glazed pieces

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bone dry, bisqued, 12.10 40 Kirkland

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CYLINDERS & LIGHT Our final tests included the implementation of a light source in a component that had been drilled, in order to see its effect, in the ceramic component as well as in its surroundings.

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For the light tests of the whole string we used LED tape which runs through a plastic tube. We then passed the tube through the ceramic components. We experimented with different formations and light conditions to test the lighting effect, as well as the structural effect of the tube on the string.

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JOINTS Although we had designed the edges of the pieces so as to fit into one another with a male-female part on each piece, it quickly became clear that due to: _lack of accuracy _deformations during the firing processs a solution had to be found to increase friction and stability in order to enable the satisfactory connection of the pieces.

PlastiDip Our first test was with the use of PlastiDip to cover on part of the joint. We performed PlastiDip Tests to both glazed and unglazed pieces. Even though the material seemed to add friction to the joint, we came to the conlcusion that it was not enough to support the structure.

PlastiDip on Fired Piece Edge

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PlastiDip on Glazed Piece Edge


Silicon Adhesive

180 degrees angle test - Clear Silicon

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Covering male part of the joint with clear silicon adhesive.

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Add extra silicon to fill the gaps and create an extra layer.

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Clean off the excess carefully so as to keep a solid layer of silicon on the joint.

0 degrees angle test - White Silicon

Silicon Adhesive was chosen as optimum solution for the joints. After a few tests we concluded that the result is satisfactory since it adds to the structural behavior of the aggregation, and is not too rigid thus allowing flexibility in the building process. Also its clear appearance makes it a discreet addition to the design. Its cons include drying time (at least 12 hours). 61


Production of Bisqued Pieces for Final Model

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Production of Fired Pieces for Final Model

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ASSEMBLY Mock-up. Aggregation. Final Assembly. Completion.

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ASSEMBLY PROCESS

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JOINT ADHESION

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ASSEMBLING OF STRINGS

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FINAL ASSEMBLY

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The images contained in this book are either taken from the print resources listed, available under a license labeled for reuse (as in the wikipedia commons), or are the original property of the authors.

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Profile for Alkistis Mavroeidi

Celocia Cosida  

A research paper presented in partial fulfillment of Material Practice as Research: Digital Design and Fabrication Harvard Graduate School o...

Celocia Cosida  

A research paper presented in partial fulfillment of Material Practice as Research: Digital Design and Fabrication Harvard Graduate School o...

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