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Computers and Art Casting


The use of CAD in craft making, compared with Japanese art casting

or
...but is it art?

Perhaps the best way to answer this question is to consider a specific example, rather than flounder amongst abstractions.

In early 2000, I made a cast bronze vessel, a kensui, or waste water receptacle, as a contribution to the exhibition, "A Tea House for the City", at The Lighthouse in Glasgow. This exhibition, curated by Alex Fraser and Brent Richards in association with Central St Martins College of Art & Design, looked at the context for the Japanese Way of Tea in a modern western city.It is interesting and informative to compare the methods I used to make this kensui, with those traditionally employed in Japan to make such vessels. Both employ the principle of lathing a profile to generate a wax original, from which the vessel is cast, but differ considerably in the detail of the means used to achieve this end, since this was the first piece where I used computers to aid both design and manufacture. However, I contend that the same bascs apply to both, and that the maker remains in total control of the design and manufacture at every stage. It is the tools that are different. Read on and judge for yourself.