3D Printshow Collection, London/Paris 2013

These pieces will be on display in a gallery space at the shows:

20131030 3D Captured 3D Printed Venus de Milo by Cosmo Wenman
Venus de Milo, 130 BCE
1850 plaster cast by the Louvre atelier, 3D captured in the Skulpturhalle Basel museum 9/2013

This print of Venus de Milo is derived from my recent 3D capture of the Skulpturhalle Basel museum’s 1850 plaster cast of the original. That high quality cast, likely made by the Louvre’s own atelier, was part of a vibrant 19th century tradition of museums, universities, art schools, and wealthy collectors buying and trading plaster reproductions of famous works from each other so that they could be seen by larger audiences. That tradition is about to be brought back to life — when I publish my 3D capture and 3D printable files of Venus de Milo, anyone will be able to print their own copy.

From Through A Scanner, Skulpturhalle
By Cosmo Wenman

Materials: PLA plastic with patinated copper finish

Tools:
3D capture: Autodesk ReCap Photo
3D editing: Blender and Autodesk Meshmixer
3D printing: MakerBot Replicator1
Finish: Alternate Reality Patinas





20131030 3D Captured 3D Printed Winged Victory of Samothrace by Cosmo Wenman
Winged Victory of Samothrace, 200 BCE
1892 plaster cast by the Louvre atelier, 3D captured in the Skulpturhalle Basel museum 9/2013

This print of Nike, Winged Victory of Samothrace is derived from my recent 3D capture of the Skulpturhalle Basel museum’s plaster cast of the original. That high quality cast was made by the Louvre atelier in 1892, and was one of the most popular plasters to be collected by museums, universities, art schools, and wealthy collectors around the world. Now that Winged Victory has been unveiled here as a 3D print, I will publish my 3D capture and 3D printable files, and she’ll be unleashed for everyone to enjoy.

From Through A Scanner, Skulpturhalle
By Cosmo Wenman

Materials: PLA plastic with patinated copper finish

Tools:
3D capture: Autodesk ReCap Photo
3D editing: Blender and Autodesk Meshmixer
3D printing: MakerBot Replicator1
Finish: Alternate Reality Patinas




Getty Caligula in Bronze by Cosmo Wenman
Getty Villa Caligula in Bronze, 40 AD
Marble original 3D captured at the Getty Villa, 11/2012

In early 2013, I produced a life-size bronze adaptation of my capture of the Getty Villa’s marble portrait of Caligula. In the onscreen design, I added a fracture to his neck to match that of the Met’s bronze portrait of his grandfather, Marcus Agrippa. I also deleted his eyes. When a bronze or marble has its eyes intact, the viewer can put themselves in the center of the sculpture’s field of view, as though it were looking back at them. The overall effect is proximity and familiarity. But when the eyes are lost, the piece never looks back. It is always looking through, or past, the observer. The subject becomes distant and enigmatic, even glamourous. Or perhaps dead, ghostly, or lost — a vacant, uninhabited shell of what once was, suggesting a previous life. It becomes an artifact.

From Lost PLA Bronze Casting and the Art of the Living Dead
By Cosmo Wenman

Material: Bronze

Tools:
3D capture: Autodesk 123D Catch
3D editing: Blender and Autodesk Meshmixer
3D printing: MakerBot Replicator1
Lost PLA bronze casting: Alternate Reality Atelier
Finish: Alternate Reality Patinas




RamessesII in Bronze by Cosmo Wenman
Colossal Bust of Ramesses II / Ozymandias, 1250 BCE
Granite original 3D captured at the British Museum, 11/2012

I digitally cut away the damaged surfaces of my 3D capture of the British Museum’s famous Ramesses II, The Younger Memnon, the size, face, and incompleteness of which were the inspiration for Shelley’s Ozymandias. The pretty design is 3,200 years old, originally part of a mortuary temple in Thebes. All involved in its creation are long dead, unable to interfere with or protest its reuse and new life as data, plastic, or bronze. I printed and cast only the intact parts, creating a decorative bronze bauble, broken and patinated with age, worn bright where it has been touched.

From Lost PLA Bronze Casting and the Art of the Living Dead
By Cosmo Wenman

Material: Bronze

Tools:
3D capture: Autodesk ReCap Photo
3D editing: Blender and Autodesk Meshmixer
3D printing: MakerBot Replicator1
Lost PLA bronze casting: Alternate Reality Atelier
Finish: Alternate Reality Patinas




Ecstasy by Eric Gill in bronze by Cosmo Wenman_close crop_reduced
“Ecstasy” by Eric Gill, 1910
Hoptonwood stone original 3D captured in the Tate Britain, 8/2012

“Death plus seventy years” is the magic spell that buries most art from the modern era along with its creators. Fortunately, if that’s the right way to put it, Eric Gill has been dead just long enough for all his work to have passed out of limbo and into the public domain. He’s been dead since 1940, so his work no longer has to be buried with him, or confined to a single place, instance, or iteration — or displayed in mausoleum-like museums. I captured Gill’s 1910 limestone Ecstasy at the Tate Britain in August 2012, and have given it a new life in bronze.

From Lost PLA Bronze Casting and the Art of the Living Dead
By Cosmo Wenman

Material: Bronze

Tools:
3D capture: Autodesk ReCap Photo
3D editing: Blender and Autodesk Meshmixer
3D printing: MakerBot Replicator1
Lost PLA Bronze casting: Alternate Reality Atelier




20131006 Pericles Helmet
Sketch of Perikles’ Helmet, 2nd century AD
Modelled after the original marble Portrait of Perikles 3D captured in the British Museum, 8/2012

I made a quick 3D capture of the British Museum’s Marble portrait bust of Perikles. I used the results as a template, taking its measurements and contours as a guide in order to design this rough 3D printed sketch of his helmet, making a copy of an artifact that has never been discovered.

By Cosmo Wenman

Materials: PLA plastic with patinated bronze and brass finish.

Tools:
3D capture: Autodesk 123D Catch
3D editing: Blender
3D printing: MakerBot Replicator1
Finish: Alternate Reality Patinas




20130617 GeorgeMelies Tansition Data to Plastic to Bronzed
“Georges Méliès” by Renato Carvillani, 1951
“Créateur du spectacle cinématographique”
Bronze original 3D captured in Père Lachaise Cemetery, 11/2012

I scanned several graves in Père Lachaise cemetery, Paris, in October, 2012. There are so many incredible sculptures to choose from there, monuments to incredible people. This one is special — the verdigris bronze bust by Renato Carvillani that graces the grave of French illusionist and cinematography pioneer Georges Méliès — the father of special effects and science fiction movies. It seems fitting to render him in a new medium.

By Cosmo Wenman

Materials: PLA plastic with patinated bronze finish.




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These pieces will be on display at Autodesk’s exhibit:

InoposFULL_preview_featured
The Inopos / Alexander the Great, circa 100 BCE
Marble original 3D captured at the Louvre, 11/2012

Originally thought to represent the Cycladic river god Inopos, the nearly one meter tall fragmented bust known as “The Inopos” is now accepted as a portrait of Alexander the Great. If the full figure had survived intact, it would stand at well over eight feet tall—god scale. At the Louvre, the imposing, larger-than-life figure hides in plain sight, largely unnoticed, staring down at the crowds that flock to see the Venus de Milo just twenty feet away.

I captured the original in the Louvre in October 2012 and digitally restored its damaged nose using a nose I captured from a portrait of Alexander at the British Museum.

From 3D Printed Portraiture: Past, Present, and Future
By Cosmo Wenman

Materials: PLA plastic with patinated bronze finish.

Tools:
3D capture: Autodesk 123D Catch
3D editing: Blender
3D printing: MakerBot Replicator1
Finish: Alternate Reality Patinas




2013 Parthenon Head of a Horse of Selene 3D printed and Finished in Patinated Brass by Cosmo Wenman
Head of a Horse of Selene, from the Parthenon, 438-432 BCE
Marble original 3D captured at the British Museum, 8/2012

I originally printed this horse and finished it in metal, in an effort to show that consumer-grade 3D printers can produce objects of art worthy of display. I made it life-size because I thought doing so would be jarring; it would help break consumer-grade 3D printing out of the toy and trinket realm and make it all seem more real somehow.

But I chose this and a few other archetypical subjects (like Alexander the Great) in particular to try to advance the idea that with 3D scanning and 3D printing, private collectors and museums have an opportunity to turn their collections into living engines of cultural creation. They can digitize their three-dimensional collections and project them outward into the public realm to be adapted, multiplied, and remixed.

If I can do it with just a camera and some free software, the Getty, the Met, the British Museum, or the Louvre–or a wealthy collector–can do it too. In fact, they’ve already done a lot of the scanning, they just haven’t done much of the publishing. But they should, in my opinion, because these technologies offer a way to break great art out of mausoleum-like settings, and put them where they can come alive and reach and influence many more people, in a vibrant, lively, and anarchic popular culture.

From British Museum Scans + Prints
By Cosmo Wenman

Materials: PLA plastic with patinated brass finish.

Tools:
3D capture: Autodesk 123D Catch
3D editing: Blender
3D printing: MakerBot Replicator1
Finish: Alternate Reality Patinas




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This piece will NOT be on display in London or Paris…

Matisse Nude Back I in Bronze by Cosmo Wenman_close crop
“Back I” by Henri Matisse, 1909
Bronze original 3D captured at UCLA Hammer Museum / Murphy Sculpture Garden, 8/2013

Given the technologies coming online these days, it’s a pathetic reality that one of the first, most salient questions about art created in the modern era won’t be “What does it mean?”, “Isn’t it pretty?” or “How will I alter it or make one for myself?” but “When did the artist die?” An arbitrary, legalistic burial ritual will be the only thing keeping people from having the art they want.

Proving that those rituals are arbitrary, and navigable only by a select priesthood, one more bronze that I’ve reproduced — but which won’t be on display at the London and Paris shows — is Henri Matisse’s 1909 Back I.

Matisse worked on the Back series from 1909 to 1930, reworking the form over and over, ultimately producing a quartet of larger-than-life plasters. It’s hard to find a straightforward account of their provenance and multiple iterations, but what does seem clear is that the final three were not shown publicly until late in Matisse’s life, and that all four were cast in bronze posthumously.

But the plaster of Back I was exhibited in Paris and Lausanne in 1913.

As far as I can tell, that makes the design of Back I subject to a quirk of US copyright law that holds that any work produced anywhere in the world prior to 1923 is now in the public domain. I think that means I can do what I want with this design, at least in the US.

I captured the Back series in UCLA’s Murphy Sculpture Garden. Using my 3D-print-to-bronze casting process, I’ve made a 1/5th scale copy of Back I in bronze, about 15 inches tall, with a brown patina to match the original.

Unfortunately, the EU does not recognize the US 1923 rule. If I were to use my copy of Back I outside the US, or even within it, could whoever holds the copyright in the EU go after me? I have no idea. Faced with a similar ambiguity with a Picasso, even James Cameron eventually buckled.

There is to some, apparently, a clear, meaningful moral distinction at work in the ether surrounding all these works, something other than arbitrary, haphazard legislation and vague, modern mysticism concerning dead people’s “rights” that puts a 1910 Gill in the public domain but keeps a 1909 Matisse beyond reach.

I don’t know what to do with my Matisse, but I definitely won’t be exhibiting it in Paris or London. For all practical purposes, it’s off limits to art lovers in the EU, all because there are slightly different burial rituals there than in the US.

Henri Matisse died in 1954, so my copy will probably gather dust for 11 years until, in 2024, all spells and copyrights in his work expire worldwide. Then I’ll finally be able to unearth my bronze and bring it back from the dead.

From Lost PLA Bronze Casting and the Art of the Living Dead
By Cosmo Wenman

Material: Bronze

Tools:
3D capture: Autodesk ReCap Photo
3D editing: Blender
3D printing: MakerBot Replicator1
Lost PLA Bronze casting: Alternate Reality Atelier
Finish: Alternate Reality Patinas




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