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 SoftLab is a space dedicated to the research and development of artistic projects using soft-circuits and wearable technology in the Center for Digital Arts & Experimental Media (DxArts) at the University of Washington, in Seattle.


Transparent & Dangerous with Hannah Perner-Wilson

Transparent & Dangerous with Hannah Perner-Wilson

On April 24th, 2017 we had the amazing opportunity to host Hannah Perner-Wilson in a guest lecture and a short workshop entitled "Transparent and Dangerous" at the DXARTS softLab, as part of the 490B Seminar Studio: E-textiles & Wearables for Art & Design.

Pins are sharp and familiar, abundant and conductive. Used in textiles as tools for prototyping, to make quick connections between materials. In this workshop the aim was to examine these pins closer, treat them as materials themselves and make use of their ability to conduct electricity.

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During this hands-on activity students explored the anatomy of pins, by examining their history, materiality, form and function. They applied them as material in the field of electronic textiles by combining them with a variety of conductive and non-conductive materials to create electronic connections, sensors and actuators. The results were sharp and delicate, transparent and dangerous.

Students were asked to collect interesting materials and bring these with them to the workshop. Anything hard, soft, flexible, squishy… that could be pierced and penetrated by a pin.

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Some words about Hannah:
Hannah' s work combines conductive materials and craft techniques to develop new styles of building electronics that emphasize materiality and process. She creates working prototypes to demonstrate the kinds of electronic artifacts we might build for ourselves in a world of electronic diversity. A significant part of her work goes into documenting and disseminating her techniques so that they can be applied by others.

Since 2006 she has been collaborating with Mika Satomi, forming the collective KOBAKANT. In 2009 they published an online database titled How To Get What You Want, where they share their textile sensor designs and DIY approach to E-Textiles.

She received a B.Sc. in Industrial Design from the University for Art and Industrial Design Linz and an M.Sc. in Media Arts and Sciences from the MIT Media Lab, where she was a student in the High-Low Tech research group. Her thesis work focused on developing, documenting and disseminating a Kit-of-No-Parts approach to building electronics.

Tincuta Heinzel on Interactive Textiles, Reactive Materials, Personalised Mass-Production

Tincuta Heinzel on Interactive Textiles, Reactive Materials, Personalised Mass-Production

Irene Posch on E-textile tools at HCDE

Irene Posch on E-textile tools at HCDE