I posted this piece the other day but made a lot of progress on it since so I’m posting an update. Inspired By Dreamland’s Creation as we other religious art historical works, this piece is sculpted on 3D scans and will be chopped into blocks, 3D printed and cast in glass during this year’s residency at Wheaton Arts’ Creative Glass Center of America. I’m thinking the first one will be 3’x4′ in size but how cool would it be as an architectural glass wall at 8’x10′? What’s Next? The Gates of Hell!
I’m pleased to announce that I have been selected as a 2015 Fellowship recipient at Wheaton Arts’ Creative Glass Center of America to pursue a body of work based on techniques I have been developing to cast glass from 3D printed positives. I plan to use the fellowship pursue works on themes of Heaven and Hell. These ideas evolved out my interest in Coney Island through Dreamland’s famed attractions of Creation and Hell Gate, but have deeper roots in art history- specifically Ghiberti’s Gate of Paradise, Rodin’s Gates of Hell and Gustav Dore’s Paradise Lost. The themes of Heaven and Hell resonate to me in today’s era of climate change and environmental collapse, so I plan on exploring digital sculpting on top of 3D scanned imagery to create sculptures that can be 3D printed and cast in glass. Below is one work in progress from this new series. I’m really excited about exploring this work and hope to have some news about it in the future!
Work in Progress
Last month I did a Makerfaire event for PepsiCo with the agency Sparks & Honey. I made 3D portraits for all the employees there. I’m just sending out the last batch of prints to all the PepsiCo employees we scanned. As a special thank you I’m throwing in these two jumbo blue prints of the guy drinking a Pepsi that I made on my SeeMeCNC Rostock Max delta printer. I think someone will appreciate them!
My old boss (and one of my favorite artists) Donald Lipski and his wife Terri made it out to the Coney Island Scan-A-Rama 3D Portrait studio yesterday. It was great to scan them and give them a personal tour of my show in the Coney Island Museum!
One of the local Coney Island guys I have known since he was a boy died this week. Carlos had a heart attack just short of celebrating his 40th birthday. He was a hustler at one of those crooked game joints you can never win at, but he was a nice guy underneath it all. I like to think that he got some culturing through seeing the shows at Coney Island USA over the years.
I 3D scanned Carlos last spring so I made a few prints to give to the family for the funeral. His dad is a big tough Hispanic guy with a gold tooth. When I gave him the print he broke down in tears. It was very touching.
I always thought that the 3D portraits would make good funeral stones but this is the first scanning subject I ever had that died. It was an intense experience that reminded me of the power an image like this can have.
I’m due to be in a Coney Island themed show at Yale University galleries this January. They want to place my 3D portraits adjacent to an Edward Kelty sideshow photo, so they want a similar grouping of performers. Maybe something like this would be good? WDYT?
This past Saturday, I had the opportunity to make 3d scanned portraits of two young couples from Staten Island. It was very sweet to see young love at work. I’m quite pleased with these scans and will be printing them today. They were young but the girls were hopeful about them one day being used as a wedding cake topper!
Today I am setting up a display in the Manhattan Makerbot Store windows. The windows will feature some of my favorite 3D portraits and a smaller version the Luna Park Tower. The work will be there for the month of July and I will be speaking there on July 10. To attend or find out more, click the photo or visit http://www.makerbot.com/blog/2014/06/26/makerbot-innovator-session-fred-kahl-speak-nyc/
I would like to publicly announce that I have left my position as the Executive Creative Director at New York’s interactive design studio Funny Garbage to start life’s next adventure. I plan pursue a new career involving 3D printing, teaching and writing, and am actively seeking new opportunities. This summer I will be focusing on building my new company Scan-A-Rama 3D- the portrait studio of the future. I will continue to teach in the Spring at the School of Visual Arts MFA Design Department.
Goodbye Funny Garbage!
My last 17 years with Funny Garbage has been an amazing journey working with the greatest team of designers, developers, producers I have ever known. We created groundbreaking projects in collaboration with some of the greatest clients ever. It has truly been an honor and privilege to work together. Since 1997, Funny Garbage has been a wonderful home and family to me, but it was time to move on. I leave behind a highly capable and motivated team and I wish them all well. Seventeen years ago I was fresh out of grad school at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program with two infants and a grand total of $60 left in my bank account. My friend Peter Girardi – a graphic designer and former graffiti artist that I had worked with at The Voyager Company, had just founded a new graphic design startup named Funny Garbage with John Carlin– a lawyer who also ran the Red Hot Organization– a nonprofit that raises money for AIDS charities through a series of themed music releases. Inspired by the Residents’ Freak Show CD ROM, I had left my career as a sword swallower in Coney Island, and gone to grad school to become an digital artist in this new age of interactivity. Just as I joined FG, this new “thing” the World Wide Web began transforming the world around us. We got in on the ground floor to create groundbreaking work in interactive entertainment with some of the best brands and clients in the world. The hallmark of Funny Garbage’s work over the last (almost) two decades has been collaborations with great clients to create well designed and playful interactive experiences with personality. The numerous awards our work has won, from Emmys to Webbys is testament to our successes.
The world of apps has literally brought me back full circle to where I began in the era of CD ROM so it feels like a fitting time for a change. In the aftermath of last year’s Coney Island Scan-A-Rama Kickstarter, my fascination and love for 3D printing has beckoned for full time attention. Both my children are now off to college. Its time for a major life metamorphosis. There are numerous opportunities for personal growth with 3D scanning and printing, so I am taking a giant leap of faith that the universe will take care of me. So here goes with my next venture- Scan-A-Rama 3D!