Article: Stroke of Genius: Artist Dazzles with 3D-Printed Paintings

3D printing is turning up in all sorts of places these days, and recently, it’s been gaining traction in the art world, with one artist using the printers to create giant paintings with loads of texture.

“My paintings address both the visual perception and the tactile,” said Ioan Florea, whose artwork is currently on display in Indiana. When people see Florea’s paintings, their first reaction is to get close and touch them, he added.

Florea first uses 3D printing to build prototypes for the larger shapes in his paintings. To create the scaled-up versions of these 3D shapes, which are enlarged 20 to 30 times, he cures the resins using heat (by contrast, 3D printing often involves curing resins using ultraviolet light). The resin and pigment are like the paint, and all the shapes are embedded in it, Florea said. Then, he uses transfer techniques to attach the shapes to a canvas. [Image Gallery: The Giant 3D Paintings of Ioan Florea]

Because his paintings are big, Florea uses ultralight materials. “With regular materials, one of my paintings would be 600 pounds, but I try to keep them to 100 pounds,” Florea told LiveScience.

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