This interactive installation features woven wool fibers laced with an intricate lattice of conductive thread and dyed with thermochromic ink. When the conductive thread is activated by movement sensors, they warm the fabric, causing portions to change color. Once the warming phase is complete, a tiny fan is activated, cooling the fabric and causing it to return to a monchromatic blue.
The work is a collaboration between Laura Devendorf, assistant professor at CU Boulder’s ATLAS Institute, and Emilia Pucci, an independent artist and designer who spent several weeks over the summer as artist in residence in Devendorf’s Unstable Design Lab. Devendorf describes the installation as an exploration of the tensions and opportunities that arise when traditional and "smart" materials meet. "The soft interactive display recognizes the presence of the viewer and comes alive, slowly revealing a spiral of white dots on the surface," she explains. "As the viewer stays longer, a set of patterns connect the dots, forming constellations that slowly emerge and then submerge back into the blue fabric."
The project is Devendorf's latest work involving thermochromic dyes and smart textiles, and the first since establishing the Unstable Design Lab in spring, 2017.