Recent News

April 20, 2018

The 2018 North Texas Digital Fabrication Symposium was hosted at Texas Woman’s University April 20–21, 2018. Artists, researchers, makers and students came together at TWU to discuss digital fabrication, its practice, pedagogy and curation. The theme Humanizing the Digital inspired fascinating proposals from artists and researchers working with digital fabrication in a variety of applications.

The symposium events were organized around three sub-themes: Embodiment & Technology, Adaptation & Play, and Process & Practice. This two-day symposium brought together an exciting group of artists and researchers to share their work through moderated panel presentations, workshops, roundtable discussions and a corresponding group exhibition.

James Thurman's work was featured at the 2018 American Association of Woodturners Annual Symposium. Although the final form is a basic plate with a stand, a variety of non-traditional approaches are incorporated into it. The plate is made of “Thurmanite®,” a material I developed which is made of layers of recycled paper epoxied together with an eco-resin (this particular plate is made from different sections of a World Atlas). Then laser engraved with a pattern inspired by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, as a tribute to this major figure in the Symbolist Movement.  The hammerformed copper stand emphasizes the importance of the handwork throughout all of the processes utilized in this piece.

iARTA Participant Marco Boungiorno Nardelli's MaterialsSoundMusic project creates data-driven music through an algorithm that maps a material’s energy bands onto the 88 keys of a piano. Buongiorno Nardelli, who is now a professor of physics at the University of North Texas (UNT), conceived his project at the time of the Materials Genome Initiative, which the White House launched in 2011 to accelerate the discovery of new materials. As part of this initiative, he participated in the development of AFLOWLIB—an online database cataloging the properties of millions of existing or theorized materials. Researchers around the globe can freely access the database to fish for a superconductor, metal, or ceramic that best suits their application.

In developing this database, Buongiorno Nardelli pondered two questions. The first had to do with sifting through AFLOWLIB’s massive amounts of data. How could the properties of a material be represented so that researchers can quickly perceive and evaluate them? The second was an outreach challenge. Materials aren’t as sexy as black hole mergers or the “God particle.” How could electronic properties or crystal lattices be made more appealing to the public’s imagination? For Buongiorno Nardelli, who’d been playing and composing music since the age of six, the obvious answer to both questions was to use sound...

iARTA Affiliate Seth Shafer's "the machine is the artist is the artist the machine" is an interactive, web-based timeline of art history. This is a collection of artwork and writings about artwork made in collaboration with machines given some degree of autonomy. This art goes by many names – cybernetic art, computer art, telematic art, generative art, algorithmic art, etc. – but share many common features in their use of a machine as an active, creative agent. The machine, too, has many names – the mainframe, the personal computer, the laptop, the microcontroller, the embedded microchip, etc. – but all share the commonality of extending the abilities of human creativity.