kinetic sculpture

Metalier saves $6.3 million dollars on kinetic sculpture

Metalier liquid metal and kinetic artists create affordable design

Kinetic Sculpture is just one way in which Metalier liquid metal can demonstrate its cost-effectiveness.  Admittedly kinetic sculpture is not exactly a mainstream commercial avenue for liquid metal.  It does, however, provide a stunning comparison between the costs of using Metalier as against sheet metal.

Len Lye Foundation Engineers have looked to Metalier.

Len Lye’s kinetic sculpture was way ahead of its time and many of his ideas are still to be executed.  Metalier has been invited to test its coating on a particular work of art that Canterbury University engineers are building.  The design which is on a civic scale involves seven 50 metre strips of stainless steel that move like a serpent and hit an end piece that makes a light flash.

The strips of stainless steel are estimated to cost $1 million dollars each.  This makes the sculpture cost well over $7 million dollars. This is big money even at a civic level, or perhaps one should say, especially at a civic level.  Manufactured in fibreglass and coated with Metalier liquid metal the strips are estimated to cost, in total, about $700,000 – 10% of the cost of the stainless steel sheet metal.  This is a saving of $6.3 million dollars.

Canterbury University are naturally keen to test Metalier for this role.  So far our own tests indicate that the metal coating will withstand the pressure put on it by the kinetic action.  Some of the strips lie in water when they are not being serpents and we know that water presents no problem for Metalier.  The real question now is how the fibreglass strips will perform.

Kinetic sculpture waves in the breeze.

I don’t know about you but I find kinetic sculptures mesmerizing.   I could watch them for hours swaying and changing as the wind blows.  Students at Canterbury University are working right now on a wand to be made of fibreglass or carbon fibre which will be coated with Metalier liquid metal.  This will be a great test for the Metalier coatings and another way we can showcase them to the world.

Please enjoy the sculpture Kinetic Rain in Changi Airport Singapore by German design firm Art+Com.  This sculpture moves by computer-controlled motors rather than the wind.  Rather better for indoors we think.

Artists, sculptors and kinetic addicts can contact us right here or fill in the form below to get in touch.


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yarn bombing

Yarn bombing | A Texan art-form

Yarn bombing - Something completely different!

Yarn-bombing was something new to the team from Metalier when it finished its world travels with a final stop-over in Austin Tx.  Austin, with its wonderful city slogan “Keeping Austin Weird” is the birthplace and home of the Metalier Nano Clear Coat so it was a fitting place for the team to visit.

Yarn bombing began in Houston, Texas in 2005 when Magda Sayeg cover her door handle with a cozy. The movement is now a worldwide one and goes under varying names such as yarnstorms
Guerilla knitting, kniffiti, urban knitting and graffiti knitting.  In fact, it is a form of graffiti and illegal in many places but its non-permanent and doesn’t damage the substrate.

It’s different from usual graffiti forms too. It’s mainly about reclaiming cold and sterile public spaces and doesn’t have the darker side of usual graffiti. It is an art form and can be very pretty – like the trees in the picture above.

The yarn bombing movement is not without wit either.  One artist calls herself Deadly Knitshade and in London UK there is a city knitting collective called “Knit the City”. There is a Knit Knot Tree display in Yellow Springs, Ohio. It was set up by the jafagirls as a thank you to trees for helping humanity. In New York City Yarn Bombing has been used for pole warming. It’s whimsical clever and fun.

At Metalier, we haven’t tried to knit with our metal coatings but we do use fabric, and lace in particular, to create stylish clever patterns. And we do have our flexible binder which can be used on fabric, cloth and rubber moulds.

We love to talk to you about your designs so contact us here or complete the form below.


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Metalier in France

Metalier in France

Metalier in France will be supported by the Hub in Birmingham, UK.

Contact details for the European hub at Granlyn are here.

But the HQ reps visiting the hub actually took a bit of time out in France to visit the Department of Ardeche in the Central Massif .  The Ardeche is one of the poorest and least populated departments in the whole of France but it is also one of the most beautiful. The hills of Ardeche couldn’t be anywhere else but France.

High on the list of priorities was a climb to the summit of Mont Mezenc, the highest mountain in the area. This was accompanied by a French lesson, largely unsuccessful, in how to pronounce differently “maison” for house and “mezenc” for the mountain. Sigh.

Mezenc is actually a very interesting area. It has developed a particular way of fattening beef by feeding them with hay. Hay was essential because of the shortage of pasture. The finest hay is fed to the cattle who are traditionally sold at Easter. A whole accreditation system has grown up around the practice.

Mezenc Fin du gras sounds elegant and sophisticated when said in French. Translated into English Mezenc Fat End is neither inspiring nor appetizing. It’s one of the examples of how a word for word translation can ruin the grace of the original.

Metalier in France – we’re looking forward to setting up there -well we sort of have a French name, don’t we? Metalier is a contrived word of our own derived from marrying Metal with the French word “Atelier” which translates as a workshop or studio, especially one used by an artists or designer. Metalier metals are an art-form and our team are artists and creators.

Contact us to find out when Metalier in France becomes a reality or if you think you would like to bring our metal system to that country. Or complete the form below.


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Metalier UK hub

Metalier UK Hub | Birmingham

The Metalier UK Hub is in Birmingham

The Metalier UK hub was the next stop on the international tour. Actually it’s also about to be the Metalier UK/Europe Hub too.

Birmingham sometimes gets a bad press but it’s actually very cultured with its orchestra, ballet, repertory theatre, library and the Barber Institute of Fine Arts. They all have international reputations.  And there are also great grass roots art, music, literary and culinary scenes.

Amazingly, Birmingham is the fourth-most visited city in the UK by foreign visitors.

London, of course, is first by a long shot then Edinburgh (not unexpected), Manchester and Birmingham.

Just a quick train ride from London Euston, Birmingham is ideally located in the British West Midlands for the Metalier UK Hub. It’s also got a great compact international airport so is convenient for the likes of visitors from HQ and also from Europe. And sorry, but anything to avoid Heathrow if possible.

Not only all of this, but there are family members and friends there too. It’s just perfect!

Birmingham architecture is interesting too.

It’s a young city by European standards, having grown out of the Industrial Revolution. With the building of Selfridges in the Bullring Shopping Centre, it was one of the first cities to exhibit the blobitecture style.

What’s that, you might ask? Well “Blobitecture from blob architecture, blobism or blobismus are terms for a movement in architecture in which buildings have an organic, amoeba-shaped, building form.” The design for the 2003 Selfridges Building department store, was intended to “evoke the female silhouette and a famous ‘chainmail’ dress designed by Paco Rabanne in the 1960s.

I expect it is only coincidence that my favourite perfume for years, now sadly unavailable, was Paco Rabanne’s Metal.

Birmingham has heaps going for it, not just the Metalier UK Hub at Granlyn, although that’s right up there. Go to something artistic, eat something exciting and marvel at blobitecture. And if you want to contact Metalier UK their details are here – or you could fill in the form below.


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Welsh Castles

Architecture | Dubai to Welsh Castles

Welsh Castles are far away from Dubai!

From Dubai to North Wales, Conwy in fact, was the next stop on our 2015 jaunt  to say close to one of the most spectacular of the Welsh Castles. It sure is an architectural shift.

Castell Conwy (Conway Castle in English) was built in the 13th century by Edward I. It was constructed as part of a larger project to create a walled town in Conwy.  It and the defences of Conwy cost the gigantic sum of 15,000 pounds.

UNESCO considers Conwy to be one of “the finest examples of late 13th century and early 14th century military architecture in Europe” and it is classed as a World Heritage site.

It is also fascinating that it is one of the earliest stone machicolations in Britain.  Machicolation is a floor opening between the supporting corbels of a battlement.  Through these openings the castle inmates could adopt the charming practice of dropping stones and other objects onto attackers. Machicolation were more common in French castles than English ones – remember the French soldiers in Monty Python’s Holy Grail.

Architecture in Wales is not only about Welsh Castles

The Visit Wales site points out that there are many contemporary buildings adding “a sleek, stylish, eco-efficient edge” to parks, cities and heritage attractions. Buildings it singles out for mention include the Aberystwyth Arts Centre, Caerphilli Castle Visitor Centre, Galeri Caernarfon, Hafod Eryri-Snowden Summit Building, the Millenium Stadium and Senedd, the National Assembly for Wales. It’s just as well that the reception area in this building is not the main chamber. Its ceiling and tree-like funnel would have most MPs gazing heavenwards most of the time, I’m sure.

One thing which we find disconcerting about travelling by car in Wales is that as you get further and further into the country the road signs feature Welsh on the top with English underneath. Welsh seems to take a lot more and longer words to say things than English. But there is no way I can train my eyes to start reading the sign from the middle.  I’m sure there’s a word for this.

And there are in spring or autumn 47 different shades of green to be seen in the vegetation of the Conwy valley. When you’re sick of exploring Welsh castles you can drink in the green of the valley.

Even when we’re travelling there are plenty of people working hard at Metalier while we’re not there. So contact them or complete the form below to chat about metal or anything else on your mind.


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