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Eddie Rhodes gallery showcases 3D-printing

Abstract shapes created through various media

By Madisen Williams, staff writer
On March 15, 2014

  • Some wooden 3D prints is some of the many art pieces on display in the Eddie Rhodes Gallery. Christian Urrutia / The Advocate
  • A wooden 3D print is one of the many art pieces on display in the Eddie Rhodes Gallery. Christian Urrutia / The Advocate

The Eddie Rhodes Gallery is currently featuring its first ever exhibit on the art form of 3D and computer numerical control printing.
Titled "Return of the Thing: 5 Bay Area Artists use 3D Printing," the exhibit features 33 3D printed and CNC printed pieces from four of the five featured artists: Robert Geshlider, Robert M. Smith, Kim Thoman and Andrew Werby.
For unspecified reasons, Bruce Beasley pulled his three pieces from the gallery.
Adjunct fine arts professor Dana Davis said, "Even without Bruce, I think this is going to be a full show."
Located in the Rhodes Gallery in A-5, the exhibit opened on March 3 and will remain open until April 4.
Using different media from marble to wood, plastic to high tech plaster, the featured artists have created unique pieces using 3D printing that they could not manage to produce any other way, Werby said.
3D and CNC printing allows artists to use computer-assisted design programs to create any simple, intricate or eccentric idea they can think of, he said.
From there, the design is formed by a 3D printer into a physical piece of art that people can touch and look at from all angles, although touching the pieces within the gallery is prohibited.
On March 13 there will be a reception for the gallery where students and other guests can view the exhibit, enjoy refreshments and talk with the artists from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Smith will lecture on 3D printing starting at 5:30 p.m.
CNC printing has been around for more than 30 years for industrial uses, however, in the past decade or so, 3D printing has been made available to artists for the use of their own creativity, Werby said.
The works displayed in the gallery show the wide variety of possibilities that can be created with 3D printing.
Werby calls his style of 3D printed pieces "juxtamorphic."
He draws inspiration from shapes, images and forms from nature using raw materials he has collected over the years, he said.
"Abstraction is a very real aspect of all the pieces being featured," Thoman said.
Geshlider's pieces are vibrant in color, yet abstract and cartoony.
Smith said his pieces feature repetitive geometric lines and shapes, while drawing inspiration from nature as well.
Davis said, "These pieces are really interesting to look at. It's fun, even pretty."
The current generation of artists are the ones who are going to become most familiar with the medium, as advances in technology are currently making 3D printing more widely available, he said.
"It will be a really important art form in the next 20 years," he said. "It's unfortunate that Contra Costa College does not offer any classes on it."
For any questions about the exhibit or the reception, email Thoman at kim@kim.thoman.com or Davis at danapics@lmi.net


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