Wine Estate Mergelsberg

May 2016

During the descent of Mheerelindje hill, passers-by are surprised by the beautiful hilly landscape of Noorbeek (NL). Since 28 May 2016, this panorama has been completed with the name Wijndomein Mergelsberg (Wine Estate Mergelsberg), which belongs to the winery behind the marl blocks. What is special is that the lettering against the marl blocks is made with a 3D printer made from recycled PET bottles. This project originated from a collaboration between artist Jonathan Wanders and winegrower Peter Mergelsberg from Wijndomein Mergelsberg.

Peter and Marjon Mergelsberg have been growing wine grapes such as Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc since 2012. In June 2015, they asked Jonathan Wanders to make passers-by aware of the presence of the Wijndomein in a special way and to create a sort of 'entrance' of Noorbeek as a wine village, since a number of wine domains are situated in this South Limburg village in the southern part of the Netherlands.

Plastic problem
In the same period, Wanders investigated the possibilities of 3D printing. In addition, he had been preparing landscape projects for some time to draw attention to the growing problem of plastic waste. Only a small part of the plastic worldwide is recycled. Most plastic ends up in our rivers, the sea (Plastic Soup) and forests. Animals also ingest it. In 2015, publications appeared that as many as 90% of seabirds ingest plastic with mostly fatal consequences. Plastic waste is a global problem and has even entered our food chain. In July 2015 it was first recorded on video that plankton eats plastic Plankton is at the basis of the food chain in oceans. When plankton eats plastic, we all eat plastic. In January 2016, a report from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation published that by 2050 there will likely be more plastic than fish in the oceans.

Thus, the idea was born to use recycled PET bottles and to manufacture the lettering with a 3D printer. In this way passers-by are both brought to the attention of the Wijndomein (Wine Estate) and the growing problem of plastic waste. The story is twofold: Mergelsberg makes wine from the grapes. From trester - the grapes that remain after being pressed - Stookery Norbeeck makes the grappino STERK WATER (STRONG WATER). The grape skins that remain are used again to fertilize the Wine Estate. The philosophy "waste = food" is shared in a subtle and artistic way.

Wanders had the lettering manufactured by MakerPoint Maastricht, a specialist in the realization of projects with 3D printing. They found a supplier from Rotterdam who could supply filament - the 'ink' of a 3D printer on a spool - from recycled PET bottles. 10 kilos of recycled plastic have been incorporated into the lettering. That is equal to 300 bottles of 1 liter of soda. "Unique to this project is that it is the largest advertising project in the Netherlands for recycled materials and 3D printing, as far as we know. It is also a challenge to print a project with these dimensions based on the FDM method. There are only a few companies that offer this in PET, "said Rik Theunissen of MakerPoint.



Title: Wine Estate Mergelsberg
Location: Wine Estate Mergelsberg (Wijndomein Mergelsberg), near Mheerelindje 8, Noorbeek (NL)
Process: June 2015 to May 2016
Completed: May 28, 2016
Material: Filament Refil PET, acrylic lacquer black, stainless steel fasteners. Logo and letters attached against marl blocks from ENCI quarry Maastricht
Dimensions: Whole of logo and letters is 7000x35x450 mm (wxlxh)
Client: Wijndomein Mergelsberg, Peter and Marjon Mergelsberg
With special thanks to: Peter Mergelsberg, Rik Theunissen (MakerPoint)
Photos: © Roger Dohmen
© Jonathan Wanders