about the course

Technology is allowing us to see our clothing as an extension of our bodies. An extension acting as a system that can react, collect information, and augment our modes of expression and interactions with spaces and people. Historically, what we wear has been used to express our identity and complex issues related to class, race, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality. Leila Brillson states: “What you wear is a part of your identity, and identity is, well, pretty darn political”. Interested in fashion as a form of expression, many artists, designers, and architects are now crossing disciplines to explore the realm of fashion. Computation design, digital fabrication, and electronics are allowing them to propose new wearables to speculate on the future of human existence and explore the limits of the body.

In this course, students research and work with soft electronics and robotics. They integrate them into textiles to make it possible to add controlled behavior and interactivity with their immediate environment. They study nature and design wearables, understanding them like a second skin and a soft interface able to gather information and transform itself. Students also explore the complex geometries and designs allowed by digital design and manufacturing. This course engages with both theory and practice, and introduces students to a specific design sensibility and methodology to design wearables reflecting on religious, social, and political issues.