Mark Meier, an Ann Arbor-based artist, and lecturer at the University of Michigan’s Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, has introduced 3D printing techniques to ceramics. He began experimenting with 3D printing clay, using university equipment as part of his coursework. This approach allows students to quickly prototype designs and familiarize themselves with techniques relevant to the architecture industry.
Driven by his passion for ceramics, sculpture, and painting, Meier delved deeper into the possibilities of 3D printing and eventually purchased his clay printer for personal use. Measuring three feet tall, the machine utilizes a computer-controlled plunger to extrude natural clay from a tube onto a moving platform. Layer by layer, the printer builds objects using a continuous stream of clay. Notably, clay printing is faster than traditional plastic printing, with some pieces completed in as little as five minutes.
By blending traditional artistic techniques with cutting-edge technology, Meier’s work showcases the potential of 3D printing in ceramics, pushing the boundaries of creativity and exploring new avenues for artistic expression.