[ISEA2011] Panel: Piem Wirtz – Col­lab­o­ra­tive Ap­proach to Wear­ables Pro­duc­tion

Panel Statement

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