ArtProfessional Additive Manufacturing

‘The Whale Pass’ sculpture 3D printed by MX3D in Turin

Designed by Studio C&C, the artwork consists of a whale head, fin, and tail

Stay up to date with everything that is happening in the wonderful world of AM via our LinkedIn community.

Amsterdam-based WAAM 3D printing pioneer, MX3D, has successfully completed the printing of ‘The Whale Pass’ – a design by Studio C&C. The artwork consists of a whale head, fin, and tail – representing a passage of a group of whales. It is printed in stainless steel by MX3D’s robotic 3D metal printing technology, MetalXL. With a total weight of 880kg, it is one of the largest artworks ever fabricated using Robotic Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing (WAAM) technology.

'The Whale Pass' sculpture WAAM 3D printed by MX3D in Turin. Designed by Studio C&C, the artwork consists of a whale head, fin, and tail.

Paolo Albertelli and Mariagrazia Abbaldo designed ‘The Whale Pass’ based on the idea of a passage of whales in an urban park. “When you look at the whale from the boat, you see only parts emerge that are a prelude to an imaginary presence that brings with it not only its real dimensions but also a myth that crosses every human culture”, said Paolo Albertelli, artist at Studio C&C.

'The Whale Pass' sculpture WAAM 3D printed by MX3D in Turin. Designed by Studio C&C, the artwork consists of a whale head, fin, and tail.

MX3D’s extensive experience in WAAM enabled both design freedom and advanced production flexibility and speed. For instance, the whale head has a notable height of nearly 5 meters. The texture achieved by MX3D’s WAAM technology resembles the whale skin texture – adding a new dimension to the sculpture. Finally, the balance between the carved marble stone, used in the sculpture to represent the whale’s stomach and ice, “as a symbol of a habitat to be respected and defended”, and 3D printed metal alloy adds a unique element to the sculptures.

“MX3D’s robotic 3D metal printing technology provides a smart and digital production solution. It allows for higher form and size flexibility in shapes and textures, higher deposition rate, and reduction of material use and waste, making it highly relevant to achieving sustainable goals of many different industries, companies, and organizations,” said Gijs van der Velden, CEO of MX3D.

Studio C&C’s ‘The Whale Pass’ is part of the ‘Animals at Court’ exhibition in the Royal Gardens in Torino, Italy, and is now open to the public.

“The humpback whales we encountered in Tonga while diving were lost in the depths of the sea, their dark backs resembling a metal, burnished stainless steel or a liver-patinated bronze. Movements, sinuous twists, made one perceive the white belly streaked with black. The impression was that of the softness of a modelled marble. The work develops following a deconstructive declination”, said Paolo Albertelli.

'The Whale Pass' sculpture WAAM 3D printed by MX3D in Turin. Designed by Studio C&C, the artwork consists of a whale head, fin, and tail.

‘The Whale Pass’, a set of three large-scale elements of artwork, is printed in stainless steel, and was fabricated at the MX3D facility in Amsterdam. WAAM enables faster and more flexible production of large metal artworks and parts with virtually unlimited sizes with little to no pre-manufacturing setup needed.

The three parts have been printed using MX3D’s largest printing cell in portions as tall as three meters, and manually welded together – shaped into one of the biggest artworks fabricated by WAAM.

“The installation of the whales is a project that I have always imagined in large parks because it transforms the horizon line with the imaginary depth of what cannot be seen. The backs of the whales resting on the lawn emerge from the earth. The rhythm of the puffs and of the whistles are different from each other, sudden, cross diagonally: they evoke the breath, the calm path of living semi-hidden presences. It is a space for an imaginary outside the rules of the usual paths,” concluded Paolo Albertelli.

Composites AM 2024

746 composites AM companies individually surveyed and studied. Core composites AM market generated over $785 million in 2023. Market expected to grow to $7.8 billion by 2033 at 25.8% CAGR. This new...

Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he completed his studies at SUNY USB. As a journalist covering the tech and videogame industry for over 10 years, he began covering the AM industry in 2013, first as an international journalist and subsequently as a market analyst, focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets. In 2016 he co-founded London-based VoxelMatters. Today the company publishes the leading news and insights websites and, as well as VoxelMatters Directory, the largest global directory of companies in the additive manufacturing industry.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button
Close Popup
Privacy Settings saved!
Privacy Settings

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. Control your personal Cookie Services here.

These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems.

Technical Cookies
In order to use this website we use the following technically required cookies
  • wordpress_test_cookie
  • wordpress_logged_in_
  • wordpress_sec

Decline all Services
Accept all Services


Join our 12,000+ Professional community and get weekly AM industry insights straight to your inbox. Our editor-curated newsletter equips executives, engineers, and end-users with crucial updates, helping you stay ahead.