ArtEZ researchers Pauline van Dongen and Anna Wetzel have been working for the past six months on the SIA KIEM GoCI project ‘Designing Shape Changing Textiles’ (DSCT). Together with consortium partners UNStudio, Amolf, Next Nature Network, Ecomimicry Institute and guests Prof. Dr. Joost Raessens and Malou Beemer we looked back on the first six months of this one-year research project. The overall goal of the project is to design and explore the potential of shape-changing textiles and immersive experiences based on ecological principles to influence sustainable behaviour.
Halfway through the project, we are learning to surpass our own anthropocentric perspective and are considering topics like symbiosis and ecomimicry to inspire material experiments and speculative scenarios. We’ve found the beech tree to be a great source of wisdom and with the additional social, ecological, technical and design perspectives of our consortium partners and guests we discussed for whom and what we actually design during our mid-term meeting.
At this point it’s clear that there is a whole world to discover beyond the human, but we do always relate to human issues somehow. For the coming six months, we’ll narrow down our research to one or two challenges that we want to explore further within the scope of this project. We’ll continue to add to our growing library of shape-changing textile samples and begin testing some on the body and in spaces. Even though we’re at the half-way point, this is just the beginning. So, at the same time, we’re laying the foundation for a follow up project in which we can build upon this explorative research with an extended consortium.
If you’re interested in contributing, please contact project leader Michelle Baggerman at firstname.lastname@example.org.