Panel: Open Culture + Wearables
V2_ is an interdisciplinary center for art and media technology in Rotterdam (the Netherlands). At V2_Lab, artists, technicians and scientists work together to produce art projects that make use of new technologies. V2_Lab is a place for artistic Research and Development (aRt&D) and creates generic technical solutions that are relevant to the fields of art and culture. The results are published and made available under open-source licenses whenever possible. Developed hardware and software is documented online and available to use or modify to anyone who is interested to use it. Sharing and distributing knowledge is one of V2_Lab’s priorities, besides co-creating new media artworks. V2_Lab has extensive experience with working in interdisciplinary teams. The Lab crew supports artists to realize their projects, from concept to working prototype. Working collaboratively on art projects guarantees challenging group dynamics and often results in innovative artworks. Artists, designers, technicians and developers share the same goal: create a working prototype of an interesting conceptual idea, which needs to be fully functioning and ready to present to an audience within a short period of time. The Summer Sessions (brief, intense artist-in-residencies for young and promising artists) are a good example of this workflow. V2_ Lab supports the individual artist both technically and conceptually. Selected artists have a personal coach to guide them during the Summer Sessions and the Lab developers give all their energy to make it happen. In weekly meetings, the whole team gives feedback on the design and ideas, to get a maximum result. Sometimes confronting, but always directed towards a better understanding of the necessity to create a specific work. Piem will talk about her experience with supervising interdisciplinary aRt&D processes and the efforts of V2_Lab to become a central hub for wearable technology.
- Piem Wirtz is projectmanager at V2_Lab. Her main interest is in wearable technology projects, where she is not only involved from a management perspective but also in the hands-on production of artworks. Piem holds an MSc in Industrial Design Engineering and participates as a dancer in the contemporary dance group Dattah. In 2009 she initiated the E-Textile Workspace, in collaboration with Melissa Coleman. The E-Textile Workspace aims to offer an informal setting for both critical discussions around and about wearables, and for hands-on work on individual projects. The assumption that the field of wearable technology is in need for critical reflection turned out to be correct, given the fact that the group has largely expanded over the last year. The E-Textile Workspace has proven to be a very successful platform for bringing people together and sharing information. Besides hosting the monthly Workspaces, Piem has been actively coaching V2_Lab’s artist-in-residents. Many popular wearable technology projects such as Intimacy (Daan Roosegaarde), Pseudomorphs (Anouk Wipprecht) and Media Vintage (Melissa Coleman) found their origin at V2_Lab. V2.nl