Fashion Technology Exhibitions Highlight New Approaches to Haute Couture

Two upcoming exhibitions, Coded_Couture and Manus x Machina, will highlight artists and designers who are exploring what’s possible with fashion technology in haute couture.

Pratt Manhattan, New York
February 12-April 30, 2016

Opening during New York Fashion Week, the Coded_Couture exhibition asks visitors to consider: “Is coding the ultimate design tool for creating customized garments and accessories?”

Curated by Ginger Gregg Duggan and Judith Hoos Fox of curatorsquared, the show features the work of 10 artist-designers. Their approach to personalization is in the spirit of haute couture, but their methodology is rooted in coding. The designers are pioneering ways to use bio-sensors and other technology to gather real-time information about the wearer or viewers that substantially  transforms the aesthetics of the work.

The Coded_Couture exhibit opens at the Pratt Manhattan Gallery February 12 and will run through April 30 before traveling to other sites. For details see:
The Coded_Couture exhibit opens at the Pratt Manhattan Gallery February 12 and will run through April 30 before traveling to other sites. For details see:

For example, Francesca Rosella and Ryan Genz of Cute Circuit have designed garments with built-in electronics and sensors. Some garments change color based on social-media feedback.

Cute Circuit's Light Up Twitter Dress
Fashion tech firm Cute Circuit created this “Light Up Twitter” dress. Shown here worn by singer Nicole Scherzinger, the dress is made up of more than 2,000 LED lights and illustrated tweets received in real time with the hashtag #tweetthredress. Photo: CuteCircuit,

In a speculative design called “The Holy Dress,” Melissa Coleman has incorporated bio-sensors that can detect when the wearer of the dress isn’t telling the truth.

In a post on Fast Company Design, co-curator Ginger Gregg Duggan points out that “Like couture is meant to be shaped to your physical measurements, this takes it to the next level in how fashion can reflect your psyche and your interaction with others and the world at large.”

For a project entitled "[No]Where, [Now]Here," Ying Gao created two dresses that combine super organaza, photoluminescent thread and embedded eye-tracking technology to create a dress. The luminosity of the thread is activated by the spectator's gaze. (
For a project entitled “[No]Where, [Now]Here,” Ying Gao created two dresses that combine super organza, photoluminescent thread and embedded eye-tracking technology. The thread’s luminosity is activated by the spectator’s gaze. (
Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology
Metropolitan Museum of Art: Costume Institute
May 5-August 14, 2016

The Manus x Machina exhibition will explore how designers are reconciling the handmade and the machine-made in the creation of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear.

“Fashion and technology are inextricably connected, more so now than ever before,” said Thomas P. Campbell, director and CEO of the Met. “It is timely to examine the roles that the handmade and the machine-made have played in the creative process.” While the hand-made is often presented as the opposite of machine-made, “This exhibition proposes a new view in which the hand and the machine are mutual and equal protagonists.”

The exhibition is made possible by Apple, with additional support provided by Conde Nast.

“Both the automated and handcrafted processes require similar amounts of thoughtfulness and expertise,” said Jonathan Ive, Apple’s Chief Design Officer. “There are instances where technology is optimized, but ultimately it’s the amount of care put into the craftsmanship (whether it’s machine-made or handmade) that transforms ordinary materials into something extraordinary.”

The Manus x Machina exhibition will feature more than 100 examples of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear, dating from an 1880s Worth gown to a 2015 Chanel suit. The exhibition will reflect on the founding of haute couture in the 19th century when the sewing machine was invented, and the emergence of the distinction between the hand (manus) and the machine (machina) at the onset of industrialization and mass production.

The galleries will present a series of displays on  embroidery, feathers, pleating, knitting, lacework, leatherwork, braiding, and fringework and contrast them with ensembles that incorporate new fashion technology such as 3D printing, laser cutting, thermo shaping, computer modeling, circular knitting, ultrasonic welding, and bonding and laminating.


Coded Couture

Manus x Machina


Autodesk Gallery Exhibits 3D Printed Sculptures by Bruce Beasley

A solo exhibition of Bruce Beasely sculptures is on display at the Autodesk Gallery in San Francisco until February 7, 2014. What makes the sculptures noteworthy is that they were all output on 3D printers.

Beasley is an internationally known abstract sculptor whose signature bronze sculptures are collected by major museums, including the Pompidou in France, and the Guggenheim and Museum of Modern Art in New York.

While Beasley was among the first to legitimize 3D modeling as a way to draw, sketch, and imagine, the “Coriolis” series displayed at the Autodesk Gallery is the first time Beasley used 3D printing to actually “sculpt” his final artwork. After using Autodesk Alias, 3dsMax, and Inventor software to model the works, he used a state-of-the-art 3D printer to build up detailed ribbons of liquid plastic in ascending tiers to bring the designs to life.


“I’ve always held the belief that fine art is the vision of the artist and not defined by the tool of production,” said Bruce Beasley. “These Coriolis works utilize Autodesk technology that best allows me to investigate and communicate what has fascinated me for over sixty years – the aesthetic and emotional potential of complex shapes in space. Computer modeling and 3D printing give me the ability to make sculptures I could not execute in any other way. The creative impulse remains the same whatever tools an artist uses, but it is liberating and exciting to explore a new vocabulary of shapes—part mechanical, part organic— made possible through innovations in technology.”

In 2008, the Autodesk-sponsored Digital Stone Exhibition showcased Beasley and three other sculptors who use 3D software as part of their artistic process. Autodesk chose to partner with Beasley in this solo exhibition to demonstrate their mutual commitment to exploring the rich interactive boundaries between creativity and technology.

“Bruce has always forged a new technological path to further his art and was one of the earliest artists to adopt our design software into his work,” said Carl Bass, Autodesk president and CEO. “His latest Coriolis exhibition further solidifies him as one of the leading masters of revolutionizing fine art sculptural media.”

Bruce Beasley and his Coriolis exhibition will be featured at Autodesk Design Night December 5 at the Autodesk Gallery in San Francisco.

The Autodesk Gallery at One Market in San Francisco celebrates the design process that takes a great idea and turns it into a reality. With more than 20 different exhibits regularly on display, the gallery illustrates the role technology plays in great design and engineering. The Autodesk Gallery is open to the public every Wednesday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with a guided tour at 12:30 p.m. every Wednesday.


Autodesk Gallery

Bruce Beasley


Manipulated MRIs Let You See Inside an Artist’s Head

Artists are known for thinking different. So, as more artists collaborate with technology developers, it was only a matter of time before an artist used an MRI (magnetic resonance image) to show the world how she thinks.

Crownbrain explosionArtist Paula Crown’s installation “Inside My Head: A Contemporary Self-Portrait” features a manipulated MRI of the activity in her brain. The installation is on view at the Aspen Institute in Aspen, Colorado until September 2, 2013.

In the installation, two large convex screens have been mounted on customized metal frames and face each other in the center of the space. Viewers who stand directly between the screens observe the passage of seemingly abstract pattern –a pulsating accumulation of shapes and forms. These images, documented via MRI, reveal the workings of the artist’s own brain.


Crown has manipulated the images in a way that references painterly techniques from the Renaissance to the present, including the use of multiple points of perspective, sfumato, three-dimensional imaging, and cross-disciplinary collaboration.

The animation has been translated into image sonifications (also generated from the MRI scans). Todd Reynolds and Ben Rubin composed a musical score to accompany the installation and create sounds that fill the room.

The exhibition was organized by Chris Byrne, with the installation designed by The Office for Creative Research.The Office for Creative Research is a multidisciplinary research group that is exploring new modes of engagement with data through unique practices that borrow from both the arts and sciences. The Factum Arte team of artists and technicians provided video and technical support.

Paula Crown is a cross-disciplinary artist, who seamlessly employs tools ranging from pencils to 3D printers. Crown serves on the Presidential Committee on Arts and Humanities and the board of The Museum of Modern Art. She received her MFA in Painting and Drawing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2012. She is a principal at Henry Crown and Company in Chicago.

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC.


Inside My Head: Paula Crown

The Atlantic: Her Big Idea: Paula Crown

Art Gallery at Computer Graphics Conference Merges Science and Art

ARTISTS. Some excellent examples of how art is merging with science and technology will be on display in the art gallery at the SIGGRAPH 2013 Conference, July 21-25 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California.

Siggraph2013Thousands of computer graphics and interactive technology professionals will attend the conference and exhibition to learn about emerging technologies and attend programs on research, science, art, animation, music, gaming, interactivity, education, and the web.

The theme of exhibition in the Art Gallery at SIGGRAPH 2013 is “XYZN: Scale.” The theme reminds us that a key advantage of computer-based art is the ability to iteratively scale digital representations at will –in-out-up-down, back and forth, + and -.

Exhibits in the SIGGRAPH 2013 art gallery will explore how artists take advantage of these capabilities in the construction or aesthetic effects of their work.

Here are just three of the exhibitions you can see in this year’s gallery.

InterweavingDigitalBasketsIn an exhibit of “Hybrid Basketry,” Amit Zoran of MIT Media Research Lab merges contemporary 3D printing and traditional craft. 3D printed structures are shaped to allow the growth and development of hand-woven patterns. While the 3D printed plastic elements contribute to the aesthetics of the digital curvatures and manifolds, the hand-woven reed, jute, and canvas fibers give the baskets a unique organic appeal.

VisualizingFederalSpendingIn the exhibit “Visualizing Federal Spending,” Rebecca Ruige Xu of Missouri State University and Sean Hongsheng Zhai of Red Dot Blue Square have created 3D photorealistic compositions that provide a more aesthetically interesting view of government spending. The project uses procedural modeling with Python programming and Maya API to form organic flows of intermingled geometrical units to represent the profile of federal spending for each state. Total expenditures are scaled to a per capita basis to make different states comparable, while the overall surface area or volume occupied by each type of geometrical pattern represents its associated spending data.

DrawingMachineInterdisciplinary artist and engineer Robert Twomey of the University of Washington will be showing a Drawing Machine.Laboring in place of the artist, the precision-controlled CNC device will work with unfaltering patience and inhuman precision to fill a sketchbook with images over the course of the exhibition.

On the SIGGRAPH website, you can find descriptions and links related to all 15 exhibits that will be featured in the Art Gallery. The creators of the works will be talking about the works during two “Art Talks” panel discussions on Wednesday, July 24. A reception for the artists, designers, and authors of the works selected for SIGGRAPH 2013 will be held Tuesday, July 23 from 2:00 to 3:30 pm in the art gallery.


SIGGRAPH 2013 Art Gallery

SIGGRAPH 2013 Conference


Artists Can Win Six-Figure Awards in ArtPrize Competition

ARTISTS. ArtPrize is an open, international art competition that offers $560,000 in prizes. Winners are chosen both by the public and professional jurors. The art is displayed in diverse venues throughout downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan.

The 2013 competition is open to any artist in the world (18 years or older) who registers on by June 6, 2013 and secures a venue by June 20, 2013.


Any space in downtown Grand Rapids can register to  be a venue. Venues that have offered installation space in past competitions have ranged from laundromats to museums.

The fifth annual ArtPrize festival will be held September 18 to October 6, 2013. The 2012 festival displayed 1517 entries in 162 venues and attracted more than 400,000 visitors from novices to the art-world elite..

$200,000 in Juried Awards

ArtPrize presents six juried awards, five for artists and one for a venue. The Juried Grand Prize is selected by a three-person committee. Five other awards are chosen by a single juror for each category with the help of local professionals.

  • Juried Grand Prize: $100,000
  • 2-D Work:$20,000
  • 3-D Work: $20,000
  • Time/Performance-Based Work:$20,000
  • Best Use of Urban Space: $20,000

The curator of the Outstanding Venue receives a $20,000 prize.

$360,000 in Public Awards

Ten award winners will be chosen by the public during two rounds of voting via mobile devices and the Internet.

  • 1st Place: $200,000
  • 2nd Place: $75,000
  • 3rd Place: $50,000
  • 4th through 10th Place: $5,000 each

Registration Fee

The registration fee is $50 for a single entry and $100 for a collaborative entry. If you want your art to be considered for inclusion, you must register no later than Thursday, June 6 at 5 p.m. EDT. Then you can use the “Connect with Venue” feature on the website to find venues that might want to host your entry. If the venue is interested, they will contact you about a hosting agreement.  Signed hosting agreements must be submitted by Thursday, June 20 at 5 pm.

Until you have filled out your artist profile, completed a proposal for your entry, uploaded images for your entry, and paid the registration fee, you won’t be visible to participating venues and you will not be able to see their contact information either. Because venues have already started planning their exhibitions, it’s best to register early.

There is no guarantee that all registered artists will secure a venue. If you are unable to secure a venue, the registration fee is waived.


Entry Information for Artists

Cyberart Exhibit Features Digital Projections and iPad Art

Visitors to The Boston Cybertarts Gallery this spring can experience “Poetic Codings,” a new-media art exhibition that juxtaposes wall-based flatscreen displays, projections, and interactive installations with iPad apps on mobile devices. The exhibition runs April 27 to June 2, 2013, with an opening  reception on Friday, April 26.

PoeticCodingsWallArt3Curated by new-media artist Jody Zellen, “Poetic Codings” first appeared at the Fellows of Contemporary Art gallery in Los Angeles.

The exhibition includes computer projections by John Carpenter, Jeremy Rotsztain, and Casey Reas and 20 original, interactive iPad artworks by eight artists (John Baldessari, Jason Lewis, Lia, Erik Loyer, Jeremy Rotsztain, Rafaël Rozendaal, Scott Snibbe, and Jody Zellen).

More information about the artists and their work can be found in the 68-page “Poetic Codings” catalog that can be ordered as print-on-demand book from or downloaded as a PDF from Jody Zellen’s website. Scanning the QR codes published next to the art will take you to a webpage where you can download the app the artist used.

In the catalog’s introduction, Zellen says interacting with a digital work in public isn’t the same experience as sitting back and navigating a work on a mobile device: “Apps are contained, and fill a small screen. Installations are often immersive environments. While the graphic elements and animations can be similar in both formats, how the viewer interacts with the artwork is very different.”

Computer Projections

“Dandelion Clock” by John Carpenter. In this interactive work, the seeds of a digitally created dandelion float away with the viewer’s proximity to the wall.

Jeremy Rotsztain’s Action Painting is a video projection transferred onto a large canvas in the style of Jackson Pollock. It is composed using data from action movies as material.

Casey Reas, one of the inventors of the Processing computer language for artists, presents Signal to Noise (Software 1). Using television signals as a raw material, this piece distorts contemporary information into new abstract data structures.

Art on Mobile Devices

Since the introduction of the iPhone, new-media artists have been using low-cost or free apps to produce a wealth of interactive art for both iOS and Android systems.

“These are some of the most inventive and interactive art works available today,” observes George Fifield of Boston Cyberarts Gallery. “Even though several of these apps have become wildly popular, it is clear that neither the art world nor the computer industry knows what to make of these art apps.”

For example, instead of using drawing and painting apps that appear in the “art” category of the iTunes store, the “Poetic Codings” artists created works with interactive digital-art apps that can be found in the Entertainment or Lifestyle categories on iTunes.


Fifield hopes the art world will begin to take notice of what’s possible with some of these new apps. He believes the 20 apps used in “Poetic Codings” signal the beginning of a revolution that will bring interactive digital art to millions through the mobile devices. The apps also connect artists directly to an audience through an app store.

About The Cyberarts Gallery

Located in the Green Street station on the MBTA’s Orange line in Jamaica Plain, the Boston Cyberarts Gallery is an independent art organization that focuses on new and experimental “cyberart.” Cyberart encompasses any artistic endeavor in which computer technology is used to expand artistic possibilities.

The computer’s unique capabilities are integral elements of the creative process in the same way that paint, photographic film, musical instruments, and other materials have always been used to express an artist’s vision. The Boston Cyberarts Gallery brings together members of the new media community, reaches out to the general public, and supports emerging and established artists alike.


Boston Cyberarts

Poetic Codings

Exhibition Essay and Catalog: Poetic Codings



Google Expands Art Project Globally

As part of a major global expansion of its Art Project, Google has signed new partnerships with 151 art institutions in 40 countries. More than 30,000 objects are now available to view online in high resolution, up from 1,000 in the first version of the Art Project. Street View images now cover 46 museums, with more on the way.

With a few simple clicks, art lovers can discover not just paintings, but also sculpture, street art, photographs, historic and religious artifacts, and important manuscripts.Creations from a wide variety of cultures and civilizations are represented, including Brazilian street graffiti, Islamic decorative arts and ancient African rock art.

Imaging experts photograph paintings at the Chateau De Fountainbleau in France.
Imaging experts photograph paintings at the Chateau De Fountainbleau in France.

The expanded Art Project includes a wide range of institutions, including large and small traditional art museums as well as less traditional settings for great art, including the White House in Washington D.C.

Some of the new partners in the U.S. include the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia, the Cincinnati Art Museum, and the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, South Carolina.

New partners worldwide include: the Musée d’Orsay in Paris; the Museo del Oro in Bogotá, Colombia; The Rock Art Ressearch Institute in Johannesburg, South Africa; The Arab Museum of Modern Art in Qatar; the Museum of Modern Art in Sao Paulo, Brazil; the Tokyo National Museum in Japan; the Hong Kong Museum of Art in China; and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Australia.

According to Art Project head Amit Sood, the project was expanded worldwide because “It’s no longer just about the Indian student wanting to visit Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. It is now also about the American student wanting to visit the National Gallery of Modern Art in Delhi.”

How the Google Art Project Works

If you want to explore museums around the world without leaving home, you can enjoy either a “museum view” of various galleries within selected museums or get a “microscopic view” of selected artwork from each institution.

For the museum views, a specially designed Street View ‘trolley’ took 360 degree images of the interiors of selected galleries. These images were then stitched together to enable smooth navigation within each room. The gallery interiors can also be explored directly from within Street View in Google Maps.

Some of the 30,000+ high-resolution artworks were photographed in extraordinary detail using super high resolution or ‘gigapixel’ photo capturing technology. Gigapixel imaging technology can create files containing more than 7 billion pixels (about 1000 times more detailed than the average camera). With these super-high-resolution images, you can study details of the brushwork and patina beyond what is possible with the naked eye.

Discovering, Learning, and Sharing

You can browse the content of Google’s Art Project by the artist’s name, the artwork, the type of art, the museum, the country, the city and the collection. Using new Explore and Discover tools, you can find artworks by period, artist, or type of artwork from different museums around the world.

To help you learn more about the items each museum chose to display on Art Project, you can enjoy expertly narrated videos, audio guides, viewing notes, and other resources provided by the museums.

With the My Gallery feature, you can select any of the 30,000 artworks (along with favorite details) and build your own personalized gallery. You can add comments to each painting and share the whole collection with friends, family, and study groups. Google+ and video hangouts are integrated on the site to make it easy to share and talk about your galleries. You can upload and share audio and video content to your collections.

Some teachers have already begun using the Art Project in their classrooms. A dedicated Education section has been created for teachers and students.

For the next phase of the project, Google is considering developing an experimental section to show how artists are using new emerging technologies to showcase their art.  

Bringing Culture Online

“Google is committed to bringing all types of culture online and making it accessible,” says Nelson Mattos, VP of Engineering for Google. “The Art Project demonstrates how the Internet helps spread knowledge.”

Under the auspices of its Cultural Institute, Google is producing high resolution images of the Dead Sea Scrolls, digitizing the archives of famous figures such as Nelson Mandela, and creating 3D models of 18th century French cities.


Google Art Project

Art Project YouTube Channel


Google Art Project Lets You Visit Museums in Nine Countries