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Co-habiting during COVID-19 in a 3D Printed Mud Hut by Emerging Objects

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Casa Covida

We all need safe habitation during the hurtling pandemic. American studio Emerging Objects emerge with a homemade from 3D-printed adobe. Casa Covida, located in Colorado, is a hut for two people to cohabit in isolation during the coronavirus pandemic.

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The design team at Emerging Objects synthesized the concept of modern and ancient technology to unravel a home big enough for two tenants. The experimental hut in the desert of San Luis Valley stacks three cylindrical volumes woven with a trivial central bulge. The natural and sustainable adobe walls are compounded from sand, silt, clay and water. For 3D printing, the designers used a three-axis SCARA (Selective Compliance Articulated Robot Arm) and eventually left it to dry and harden under the warm sun.

Abode was hand sifted and mixed using cement mixture for the construction before being loaded into the three-axis SCARA and spurted thru a nozzle. The robotic printer is light machinery, making it easy to carry around by two people and operate using one person’s mobile phone. Emerging Objects created the software for the project, christened as an intuitive design application called Potterware.

The design fashions an undulating-wavy surface as the dome structures stand in stark brilliance across the barren landscape topped by a bulbous pink blob. A black wooden door in the central volume ajar into an open space with two earthen benches and an open fireplace for cooking and keeping warm. The pink roof can be inflated if it rains or snows or withholds the warmth when preferred.

The colourful topping relishes the muddy-ridged hut look “like a blooming cactus,” said Emerging Objects. Under one volume contains a sunken bathtub surrounded by black and shiny tumbled river stones with an open to sky oculus. The tub draws its water from an aquifer deep below the desert mountain landscape. The oculus frames starry nights and dancing clouds, enhancing the overall experience.

Casa Covida

Emerging Objects also created some of the homeware objects for Casa Covida using 3D technology. The door handles are a 3D-printed bioplastic mould, which burned to form the handles cast from wasted aluminium cans. A clay cooking pot and lid, a form taken from the Pueblo pottery of New Mexico, was 3D printed from a locally sourced micaceous clay.

Casa Covida
Casa Covida

The seating was furnished with woven textiles, sheepskin in the bedroom, woven churro, wool blankets, and cushions, all in collaboration with local weaver Joshua Tafoya. The design of Casa Covida implores as a remarkable figure defining the horizon of the mountainous terrain. Emerging Objects truly stir to envisage a safe haven during the pandemic crisis.

Casa Covida

Project credits:
Design: Emerging Objects
Team: Ronald Rael, Virginia San Fratello, Mattias Rael, Sandy Curth, Logman Arja.
3D Potter: Danny Defelici.
Photography: Elliot Ross and Emerging Objects.
Textiles: Joshua Tafoya
Special thanks: Christine Rael, Johnny Ortiz (Shed Project) and Maida Branch (Maida Goods)

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