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Artist reimagines old-fashioned chalk using a 3D printer

Architecture & Design

Artist Nikolas Bentel gives kids new architectural and design toys

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Spotted: New York-based artist Nikolas Bentel has given ordinary chalk sticks a makeover using 3D printing. The idea was to rethink how drawing tools are designed, while also giving kids a fun tool to enjoy architecture and design.

He used a computer to model the shapes and then made 3D prints of the designs. From the 3D prints, he made urethane moulds to shape the toys. The collection of three chalks make geometrically precise patterns including dots, straight lines and circles. The Circle Drawer is shaped like a spinning top. It creates five concentric lines when rolled across a surface. The Line Drawer creates squiggly marks and the round Dot Drawer makes perfect dotted patterns.

“Chalk is a widely available material that has been in use for thousands of years. Just about every shape and use has been tried with chalk. In order to reimagine an original use, I had to reimagining its structure through modern manufacturing techniques, such as 3D printing,” Bentel explained on Kickstarter.

The project was part of Bentel’s residency at the New Museum’s design incubator, New Inc, in New York City. The “chalk drawers” were initially on display at the museum store. Bentel launched a successful Kickstarter campaign to crowdfund for the toys late last year and has already shipped some kits to his funders. He is now looking at adding colour versions.




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