3D printing is becoming a true hype, and origami has always been restricted to the most patient and agile. Christophe Guberan, a third-year bachelor student of industrial design at the University of Art and Design in Lausanne, Switzerland, created Hydro-Fold, a printer that is able to print pieces of origami paper.
Hydro-Fold is able to method to print pieces of paper that pleat the paper according to the lines printed on it. In fact, the trick behind Guberan’s Hydro-Fold is not rocket science — Guberan simply replaced the regular ink in the printer cartridge with a mixture of ink and water. Despite the simplicity of the process, the results seem promising.
“Different patterns, grids and shapes can be printed on paper using this specific liquid. While drying, the paper contorts, folds and retracts around the printed and humid areas, transforming it self from a 2-dimensional paper sheet to a 3-dimensional structure where lines become edges and surfaces become volumes.”
Guberan himself outlines a new experimental approach combining modern technology (ink-jet printer) and a common and accessible material (paper). “The idea is to give shape to paper through the simple use of water, adapting an existing printer to control the phenomenon. This experimental approach allowed me to explore new avenues of research”, he explains.
Last April, Hydro-Fold was displayed at 2012’s Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan. Have a look at ECAL’s HD pictures to get a better idea of the project.