NEW DELFT BLUE

Studio RAP as Architects, Designers, Contractors & 3D Ceramic Printing

New Delft Blue is a pioneering project in the historic Dutch city Delft, designed and 3D printed by Studio RAP. This project reinterprets the world-famous decorative qualities and design vocabulary of Delft Blue porcelain. By fusing 3D clay printing, computational design, and artisanal glazing, New Delft Blue hopes to unfold a new architectural potential of ceramic ornamentation of the 21st century.

photo_credit Riccardo De Vecchi
Riccardo De Vecchi
photo_credit Riccardo De Vecchi
Riccardo De Vecchi

The Design

The lush communal courtyard of the PoortMeesters residential building block, which is part of the large-scale urban redevelopment Nieuw Delft, is framed by two large entry gates. The gates, roughly four metres wide, eight metres high and twelve metres deep, cover a large public staircase. These gates refer to Delft as a mediaeval trading city with its many city gates and provide passers-by with a glimpse of the idyllic life going on inside. The New Delft Blue gates take their inspiration from traditional Delft Blue porcelain plates. The design vocabulary of these plates has changed radically over the centuries from copying Chinese and Japanese Oriental designs to making contemporary Dutch designs. The differentiation between a decorative, nature inspired frame and idyllic scene, however, has been a recurring trait. As such, this division is the starting point for the New Delft Blue design, where the idyllic scene is the ever-changing courtyard life while the gates stand as a three-dimensional frame with algorithmically designed nature inspired patterns that guide people from the public space to the semi-public courtyard.

photo_credit Riccardo De Vecchi
Riccardo De Vecchi
photo_credit Riccardo De Vecchi
Riccardo De Vecchi

The Innovation The approximately 3000 unique ceramic tiles that cover the two gates are 3D printed, allowing for the creation of contemporary ceramics that are both rich and unique. Using an algorithmic approach to 3D pattern design, certain manufacturing constraints—maximum overhang, width, height and depth, shrinkage and internal support structure—were taken into account when the geometry of the tiles was generated. Because the tiles were 3D printed, applying variations to their shapes allowed for poetic ways of ‘painting with shapes’. This is done by applying a transparent blue runny glaze that creates on the convex portions of the tiles (the hills) a light blue colour while allowing for deep blue glaze pools in the concave (valley) areas of the tiles, creating smooth transitions between hues of blue. The deep blue colour reflects the connection to Delft Blue porcelain and the surrounding canals, and it provides a pleasing contrast to the earth-toned brickwork of the building.

photo_credit Riccardo De Vecchi
Riccardo De Vecchi
photo_credit Riccardo De Vecchi
Riccardo De Vecchi

Combining this all together the project embodies the unique identity of Delft in a contemporary way, by referring to its history with its algorithmically designed nature inspired patterns in blue and referring to Delft of today as the city of knowledge by using cutting-edge design and 3D printing technology.

photo_credit Riccardo De Vecchi
Riccardo De Vecchi
photo_credit Riccardo De Vecchi
Riccardo De Vecchi

Team:

Client: BPD(Bouwfonds Property Development), Ballast Nedam Development, Ballast Nedam Bouw West

Architect New Delft Blue, Contractor and 3D ceramic printing: Studio RAP

Glazing and Firing: Koninklijke Tichelaar

Architect PoortMeesters: VY Architects

Mounting: Kooistra Geveltechniek

Rear structure: Lomax Systems

Photographer: Riccardo De Vecchi

Movie: Oculus Film

Caption
Caption
Caption
Project Credits
Architects, Designers, Contractors & 3D Ceramic Printing
Product Spec Sheet

ElementBrand
Glazing and FiringKoninklijke Tichelaar
Rear StructureLomax Systems
Product Spec Sheet
Glazing and Firing
Rear Structure
Products Behind Projects
Product Spotlight
News
Hudson Valley Residence by HGX Design draws inspiration from local agricultural vernacular
17 Apr 2024 News
Hudson Valley Residence by HGX Design draws inspiration from local agricultural vernacular

New York City-based creative studio HGX Design has completed the Hudson Valley Residence, a modern,... More

Key projects by Perkins&Will
17 Apr 2024 News
Key projects by Perkins&Will

Perkins&Will, a global interdisciplinary design practice, places architecture at its core. With... More

Archello Awards 2024 – Early Bird submissions ending April 30th
16 Apr 2024 News
Archello Awards 2024 – Early Bird submissions ending April 30th

The Archello Awards is an exhilarating and affordable global awards program celebrating the best arc... More

Albion Stone creates stone bricks from “unloved” stone
15 Apr 2024 Innovations
Albion Stone creates stone bricks from “unloved” stone

A stone brick is a sustainable building material made using stone blocks and slabs that do not meet... More

25 best engineered wood flooring manufacturers
15 Apr 2024 Specification
25 best engineered wood flooring manufacturers

Engineered wood flooring is a versatile building product that offers several advantages over traditi... More

Austin Maynard Architects designs a “pretty” wellness-enhancing home in Melbourne
12 Apr 2024 News
Austin Maynard Architects designs a “pretty” wellness-enhancing home in Melbourne

Australian architectural studio Austin Maynard Architects recently completed a new two-story house i... More

Ædifica completes residential development in Montreal emphasizing densification, sustainability, and quality of life
11 Apr 2024 News
Ædifica completes residential development in Montreal emphasizing densification, sustainability, and quality of life

Montreal-based architectural practice Ædifica has completed Cité Angus II, the second p... More

Knox Bhavan reimagines challenging London brownfield site as contemporary low-carbon home
10 Apr 2024 News
Knox Bhavan reimagines challenging London brownfield site as contemporary low-carbon home

London-based architectural practice Knox Bhavan designed Threefold House, a new residential property... More