The arts-based research project Stitching Worlds was carried out between May 2014 and June 2018 at the Department of Industrial Design 2, University of Applied Arts Vienna, and was funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF): AR 284-G21 in the Programme for Arts-based Research (PEEK).
Core Team and Collaborators
Ebru Kurbak, Project Leader
Irene Posch, Key Researcher
Matthias Mold, Electronics Engineering Assistant
The project was carried out in exchange with a large network of colleagues, including guest artists So Kanno, Hannah Perner-Wilson and Mika Satomi. The full list of collaborators can be found at: https://www.stitchingworlds.net/network/
Stitching Worlds blends the territories of textiles and electronics by investigating textile technologies as controversial means for manufacturing electronic objects. The investigation was conducted with critical and artistic intentions through the creation of past-, present-, and future-tense narratives. What if electronics emerged from textile techniques, such as knitting, weaving, crochet, and embroidery? How would technology be different if craftspeople were the catalysts to the electronics industry, via textiles manufacturing? The project expands on the tension created by the use of highly traditional textile techniques for making functioning electronic technology. By revealing unexpected potentials of often-undervalued knowledge and skills, Stitching Worlds questions commonly accepted societal value systems and their implications.
The research was organized in four parallel and interconnected tracks: (1) hands-on “experimentation” on creating textile-based electronic components, (2) “theoretical study” into the broader, transdisciplinary topics of the project, (3) continuous “speculation” through prototyping objects and installations, and discovering new and stimulating forms of artistic expression, and (4) “reflection and dissemination” towards understanding our own practice within the larger field of contemporary modes of artistic production.
The project was carried out in exchange with large networks of collaborators, designed to trigger the artistic creation of objects and installations that expose imagined, plausible-fictive worlds of textiles and electronics.
In addition to the project blog, Stitching Worlds resulted with an exhibition and a book.
An exhibition with the same name was designed as the terminal destination for the research laboratory of the arts-based research project Stitching Worlds. It consists of a reconstruction of the Stitching Worlds workshop as well as five individual installations: The Embroidered Computer (2018), Ebru Kurbak, Irene Posch; Yarn Recorder (2018), So Kanno, Ebru Kurbak; Crafted Logic (2015), Ebru Kurbak, Irene Posch; The Knitcoin Edition (2018), Ebru Kurbak; Tools We Want (2014–2018), Ebru Kurbak, Hannah Perner-Wilson, Irene Posch, Mika Satomi. The Stitching Worlds was exhibited in the following venues:
The Angewandte Innovation Laboratory (AIL), Vienna from April 9 through April 27, 2018.
The 4th Istanbul Design Biennial – A School of Schools, Yapı Kredi Kültür ve Sanat, Istanbul from September 22 through November 4, 2018.
Stitching Worlds: Exploring Textiles and Electronics
Edited by Ebru Kurbak
Berlin 2018, 160 pages, ill., 25 x 19 cm, Softcover, English
Contributions by Onur Akmehmet, Ekmel Ertan, Lars Hallnäs, Tincuta Heinzel, Mili John Tharakan, So Kanno, Ebru Kurbak, Mark Miodownik, Matthias Mold, Jussi Parikka, Hannah Perner-Wilson, Irene Posch, Fiona Raby, Mika Satomi, Martin Schneider, Rebecca Stewart
The book can be purchased from Revolver Publishing: https://revolver-publishing.com/stitching-worlds.html
More information on the project and the research process can be seen at www.stitchingworlds.net