Cathryn McAnespy

Oktober / October - 2018

Universität der Künste Berlin


“Morphables” is a research project in the field of programmable textiles. The aim of this project was to explore the possibilities and limitations of 3D printing onto textiles and to explore possible uses.

What is the Topic?

The topic: creating programmable materials through 4D printing. Programmable materials focus on the assembly stage of the production process. The idea is that in the long term, each item should be able to self-assemble using programmable materials, which would eliminate the need for factory assembly lines and lengthy installation procedures. In this way robotics, which were central to many productivity gains, are now incorporated into the actual product material shortening the chain between industrial manufacture and end-consumer.

Why does it look like this?

The shape of the experiments is programmed by placing the PLA onto the stretched fabric. Therefore the printed parts control the transformation and are in exactly the position they need to be.

What is special?

My project shows the possibilities of 4D printing. The experiments into use, the bags, show the possibility of creating a form with volume through geometrical transformations. Through the different principles of morphing, folding and fusing, which I established in my project, I was able to create objects that were finished when leaving the printer. The bag, for example, is already attached at the seams, needing only to be cut out.

What is new?

To be able to produce things in a new way - the products are programmed to transform into their intended state.