Panel: Open Culture + Wearables
The field of electronic textiles is multi-disciplinary and operates at the intersections of textile and fashion design, industrial design, furniture design, computer science, interaction design and media art. Due to this diversity, the groups of students being taught in this field are equally diverse and all possess a specific skill set associated with their future work field. In creating their work they must consider the expectations of the type of end product(s) and the way quality is judged within that context. Experience tells us there is no one way to teach electronic textiles that would serve each group equally well. Although the needs of the students differ, the skill set required to make a successful electronic textile is the same for each student. It is important to have at least a basic understanding of both textiles and digital electronics and to know how to utilize and integrate them in a prototype. When the student’s skills in either field are lacking the result is at best naïve or clumsy, at worst students will simply not finish the project. In these diversified student groups virtually no student possesses skills in both textiles and electronics. In order to bring students to the level required for making successful electronic textiles we need to create a collection of boundary objects in the form of project documentation that describes the complete picture from textile techniques to electronics and the way integration issues were solved. Such boundary objects would allow students to see the skills they need to learn in the context of the skills they have, giving each group their own entry point into the knowledge. This presentation will discuss different methods for teaching electronic textiles to artists and designers in art schools and universities and will describe the educational tools that aid these activities, pointing to further opportunities for open design in the world of electronic textiles.
- Melissa Coleman is a new media artist whose work focuses on the shifting relationship between people, their bodies and technology. Melissa teaches at the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague and the Willem de Kooning Academie in Rotterdam and is coach at the Wearable Senses theme of the Industrial Design department of the Technical University of Eindhoven. Together with Piem Wirtz from V2_ she founded the E-Textile Workspace, a monthly expert meeting for artists and designers working with textiles and electronics. She curated the exhibition Pretty Smart Textiles, which has been on show in The Hague, The Netherlands in 2010 and in Herning, Denmark in 2011. She currently writes for Fashioning Technology and designs interactive textiles. prettysmarttextiles.com
- Marina Toeters, by-wire.net, design and research in fashion technology, ‘If technicians and designers liquidly fuse together and start interdisciplinary projects with added benefits to society, fashion will become innovative again and take responsibility for environmental issues by the implementing of tech solutions on the commercial market.’ Marina Toeters, initiator by-wire.net; about by-wire.net: by-wire.net loves to expand innovative fashion by sharing knowledge. As freelance intermediary Marina Toeters works for fashion and technical companies; creates concepts, brainstorm sessions, presentations and garments for example for technical companies that are looking for new applications for their materials or advises designers interested in material and process innovation. Marina Toeters is initiator and owner of by-wire.net. She works as freelancer with a divers network of companies and other freelancers. Besides that she educates at different institutes in The Netherlands.
- Michel Peeters, Valérie Lamontagne & Linda Worbin
Full text (PDF) p. 480-486