Computational Textiles and Architecture : Felecia Davis
Computational Textiles and Architecture : Felecia Davis


My interest in textiles started on a
reflection that was done really long time ago, like for a architecture thesis
project. I was making a projects for the African burial ground in lower Manhattan
and had wanted to use cloth kente cloths actually, a different cloth,
and was trying to communicate through meaning in the textile. The work that I
can do is really to bring together, for example, textile design where you’re
really talking about stitch geometries and their qualities and characteristics
with an idea for adding function to that textile through electronics or using the
actual qualities of the kind of fibers in the textile geometry in the textile
to do some kind of thing that you couldn’t get it to do otherwise.
When we say robots we get this like frightening image of a tin can and this really kind of harsh technology. But in fact it could be a really squishy
little stuffed animal that you play with. And that animal can help teach an
autistic child about emotions and behaviors of live things. Communication
is linked to so much in terms of how we understand the world that if we could
begin to understand how these pieces are linked in our brain we can begin to
understand – oh, well someone that might be having a speech pattern problem or a
language impairment or forgets language can be assisted with touch or feeling
something or squishing something or seeing something move. Those were
experiments in shape-changing textiles and the point of that was really to get
them to be like animal reactions, to see if people could understand what was
communicated from a shape-changing texture. So you could potentially
communicate to someone without an animal there to see if they would understand
that it’s being frightened or something else. To me that gets me really excited,
as well like how so much of this technology is interesting because of
what it tells us about us humans, not so much what it can do, but also
what it tells us about ourselves to me is really fascinating.

1 thought on “Computational Textiles and Architecture : Felecia Davis”

  1. Ricardo O' Nascimento says:

    love her research! It resonates a lot with my own practice. Lovely interview!

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