Have you ever seen those chain links carved from wood? What starts off as a solid limb is transformed into a flexible length of joined wooden rings, all through a craftsman's discriminating, painstaking removal of material.
This Collapsing Volume lamp designed by Studio Dror is built in a similar way, though the process is additive rather than subtractive and it does something you can only do with rapid prototyping: The manufacturer, Materialise.MGX, starts off with a pile of powdered nylon, and then a CNC laser selectively sinters parts of the nylon into solid links that are all interlocked. The result:
Although the wooden chain link idea is old, we love seeing objects manufactured in a way that simply would not have been possible until recently, and we're excited to see what other new, creative methods designers can bend cutting-edge production technologies into doing.