[ISEA2018] Artists Statement: Sophia Brueckner & Rachel Freire — Embodisuit: A Wearable Platform for Embodied Knowledge

Artists Statement

“Technology is not neutral. We’re inside of what we make, and it’s inside of us. We’re living in a world of connections — and it matters which ones get made and unmade.” _Donna Haraway

The Embodisuit allows its wearer to map personally chosen signals from an IoT platform to combinations of physical sensations on their body. The wearer customizes the garment with haptic modules attached with snaps to create sensations of heat, cold, vibration, and more. These sensations can be constant or infrequent, subtle or jarring, singular or grouped, and they are entirely configurable by the wearer for both practical and poetic purposes. A few examples:

– Inspired by “feeling the weather in your bones”, you feel a gentle buzz on your wrist 20 minutes before it rains.

– The sun shines in your favorite place. The modules across your back gently warm your neck and shoulders.

– A hummingbird flies under your window at home. You feel a ripple down your spine.

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  • Sophia Brueckner (UK) is a futurist artist, designer, and engineer. Inseparable from computers since the age of two, she believes she is a cyborg. At Google, she designed and implemented products used by tens of millions. Since 2011, she has taught an internationally renowned class on sci-fi prototyping and the ethics of design/invention. Her objective is to combine her background in design and engineering with the perspective of an artist to create technologies that inspire a more positive future.
  • Rachel Freire (UK) is an artist and designer who uses the body as a canvas. Her work combines material innovation and electronics with traditional craftsmanship, focusing on provocative narratives, value attribution, and sustainable processes. She is the textile designer of mi.mu gloves, a gestural interface to compose and perform music with your hands. Her work is designed to tell stories, or to inspire them.