The Durotaxis Chair is a fully 3D printed multi-material dual position rocking chair designed by Synthesis Design + Architecture and manufactured by Stratasys. The chair is inspired by the biological process of the same name, which refers to the migration of cells guided by gradients in substrate rigidity. The chair is an ovoid rocking chair which has two positions, as an upright rocker and a horizontal lounge, and is defined by a densely packed three-dimensional wire mesh that gradiates in size, scale, density, color, and rigidity. The chair capitalizes on the multi-material printing capablities of the Stratasys Objet 500 Connex3 to produce gradients of material performance. The varying gradient conditions are expressions of the combined formal, ergonomic, and structural properties of the chair.
This piece would not be possible at all without 3D printing. Not only in terms of the complexity and density of the three-dimensional mesh, which would be completely laborious in any other conventional manufacturing process , but especially in terms of the gradient distribution of material properties and performance which would be impossible without the Objet Connex3. 3D printing is having a profound effect on the design industry. At the moment, the focus is on rapid prototyping, but the shift towards rapid manufacturing is imminent. It has the potential to revolutionize the industry and induce a new industrial revolution that enables true file to factory processes. The key on the design side is not how we design for the technology, but rather how we design with it.