Visitors to Dublin Castle in Ireland might be drawn in by a bubble gum pink sculpture standing outside of the government complex, contrasting with its grey stone and brick façade. The piece is a modern take on the classical David and Goliath motif by English artist Jam Sutton which shows a young man (David) clad in streetwear sitting atop the severed head of Goliath.
Interestingly, it’s not just the addition of a baseball cap and Nike sneakers that bring the sculpture into the contemporary, but as we’ve recently learnt, the piece itself was constructed using one of the most modern art mediums today: 3D printing.
The sculpture is part of a larger exhibition hosted at Dublin Castle called “On a Pedestal” in which a number of international artists were invited to explore the theme of the portrait bust using different materials and techniques.
Jam Sutton, a contemporary artist whose work often plays with modern and classical themes, chose to recreate a scaled up version of his existing sculpture “David and Goliath” for the Dublin Castle exhibition. In doing so he reached out to London-based digital manufacturing firm Fluxaxis, which was responsible for 3D printing the sculpture.
According to a blog post by Fluxaxis, the company printed the sculpture in three separate segments on its Fortus 900mc 3D printer. The print process, which reportedly took a total of 258 hours and 15 kg of material, was then followed with extensive post-processing, including sanding the parts, priming them and finally spraying the assembled piece in a bubble gum pink paint.
“The printed replica is an enlarged copy of Jam’s original David & Goliath sculpture, which was formed from marble,” Fluxaxis writes. “We printed the sculpture in three parts using our Stratasys Fortus 900mc which enabled us to achieve the high detail required but on a large scale whilst using a heavy duty, durable material suitable for the outdoor location.”
During the “On a Pedestal” exhibition, the 3D printed sculpture was displayed in the courtyard of Dublin Castle, greeting attendees to the art show. And though the exhibition wrapped up on November 4th, Sutton’s playful piece will remain on display at the castle throughout the winter.
Fluxaxis has worked on a number of interesting projects, utilizing its team’s expertise in digital manufacturing and 3D printing to create props for soap operas, the awards for Diageo Bartender of the Year and numerous architecture and design projects. In addition to the Stratasys Fortus 900mc 3D printer, its facility also houses a Massivit 1800, the HP Multi Jet Fusion 4200, the Fortus 250mc as well as laser scanning and CNC equipment.