Hand-crafted ceramics is made in a time consuming process. By analyzing each step in the process we designed a ceramics casting machine to make the process more efficient. Starting from the idea that one ceramist can handle about 6 molds at a time, we wanted to at least double that amount.
By pouring in liquid clay in the top four molds of the machine, the casting process is started. After 15 minutes, the leftover liquid clay is poured out into the next layer of molds. From there the same step is repeated to the third layer. The four molds of the third layer pour out into one final big one that will form into a vase.
The volumes of the pieces are calculated to give enough leftover liquid clay to fill up the next layer in line. To visualize this, see the scheme below. The machine casts 4 bowls, 4 cups, 4 plates and one vase. They each come in 4 different glazes.
This project came together with the tremendous engineering and building help of my brother Roel Helder, the educational help of Raw Color, teachers at the Man and Activity department at Design Academy Eindhoven, the outer frame was welded by Hans Habraken, the whole system was powder coated by Wycosy.