…For his Magnetism Meets Architecture project, Jólan van der Wiel created a series of ceramic objects using a process that exploits the conflicting properties of natural materials and processes.
He starts by adding water to clay to create slip – a suspension of clay particles in water with the consistency of cream. More commonly used for decorating ceramic objects, slip’s liquid state means a mould would usually be required to construct something from it. The designer mixes in metal powder to make the slip magnetic. It is then applied onto a rotating surface and slowly built up using a nozzle.
Passing a magnetic field through the material provides an opposing force to gravity. The counter force draws the slip upwards and suspends it in place as it dries and hardens.
“Gaudi’s small model of La Sagrada Familia was quite inspiring for this project,” Van der Wiel told Dezeen. “He used gravity to calculate the final shape of the building. I thought, ‘What if he had to power the turn off the gravitational field for a while?’ Then he could have made the building straight up.”
The project is part of ongoing research into the applications of magnetic forces, which Van der Wiel conducted at the European Ceramic Workcentre in Den Bosch…..
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