Since 2012 I have been developing models of Coney Island’s original Luna Park. Based upon historic imagery and 3d modeled in the computer, this ambitious art project is arguably the largest art project ever created with desktop 3D printers. To learn more, please watch filmmaker Ronni Thomas’ short documentary on the project on Time.com, or embedded below. Assorted press on the project is visible here and information on seeing the exhibit is here.
The World’s Largest Desktop 3D Printed Installation to be featured in Coney Island!
Brooklyn, NY. May 19, 2014 – Coney Island USA is pleased to announce the exhibition of the world’s largest art installation ever created with desktop 3D printer technology at the Coney Island Museum. Thompson & Dundy’s Luna Park: 3D Printed by the Great Fredini is a year-long installation by artist Fred Kahl, which will open in the Coney Island Museum on Sunday, May 25. An artist’s reception will be held on Sunday, July 6 from 2-6pm. This living museum exhibit will expand over the course of the year to recreate the ornate art and architecture of Coney island’s heyday 100 years ago.
The project is the latest brainchild of Coney Island sideshow veteran, Brooklyn-based artist and impresario Fred Kahl, a.k.a. the Great Fredini. Kahl’s goal is to fully 3D model and fabricate a 1:13 scale 3D-printed replica of Coney Island’s famed Luna Park, as it stood a hundred years ago, and populate it with portraits of Coney’s most interesting characters from his Coney Island Scan-A-Rama 3D Portrait studio. The project garnered worldwide attention last summer, when Kahl raised over $16,000 on Kickstarter to build a “bot farm” in support of the endeavor. A year later, he has 3D scanned hundreds, if not thousands, of Coney’s denizens and visitors who will be featured in the installation. The show will include hundreds of 3D prints comprising over 10,000 hours of print time and the installation will fill an entire gallery of the museum’s newly reopened space.
“Luna Park has a special place in history, a witness to the society being transformed by technology. These are the themes that are relevant to us today as our world undergoes the third industrial revolution,” said Kahl. “This piece is also about a deep love of Coney Island as the cultural melting pot and showcase for presenting cutting-edge technology as entertainment.”
A graduate of New York University’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, Kahl is the Executive Creative Director at powerhouse New York design studio Funny Garbage. Over the last few years, Kahl has been obsessed with 3D printing. He created his own open source hardware for creating full body 3D scans using an Xbox Kinect game controller to capture the 3D image of his subjects. The invention has been featured in Make Magazine and on CNN, and used by Shapeways for their ongoing installation at the Museum of Art and Design in New York City. His Scan-A-Rama 3D portrait studio is the current resident of Coney Island USA’s Artist Incubator program and has become a staple of today’s cultural landscape in Coney Island.
“Fred Kahl is a legend of sorts, with a legacy of bringing mind-blowing and innovative projects to Coney Island, from Burlesque at the Beach to America’s Favorite Burlesque Game show – This or That!,” said Dick Zigun, the “Mayor” of Coney Island and the founder of Coney Island USA. “His latest undertaking will immortalize the actual fabric of our beloved Coney Island, and I urge everyone to come see it in the Coney Island Museum”
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About Coney Island USA: Coney Island USA is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation based in the amusement park area of the Coney Island neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York. In existence since 1980, Coney Island USA has developed and produces a number of different programs including some of New York City’s best-loved summer programming, such as the Mermaid Parade, the Coney Island Circus Sideshow, the Coney Island Museum, Burlesque at the Beach and the Coney Island Film Festival.