SIVA·DeTao Advanced Class Student Works Attract Professional Makers at Maker Faire Shenzhen 2017
14 November 2017
Luo Bin, Marketing Department, DeTao Masters Academy
Five years ago, Chaihuo Maker Space introduced the world’s largest maker event Maker Faire to China and held the first show in Shenzhen, attracting exhibitors from all over the globe, a move that established a platform for makers to communicate and made Shenzhen widespread among international maker communities as a “city of makers”.
This year, an extravagant and spectacular carnival themed Makers Go Pro! took place at Shenzhen Polytechnic from November 10 to 12, focusing on industrial connections and upgrades as well as professional makers that boast innovative and entrepreneurial skills. Led by their teacher Taegyun Kim, six students from the Art & Technology (Technoetic Arts) of SIVA (Shanghai Institute of Visual Art)·DeTao Advanced Class joined nearly 200 other maker groups from over two-dozen countries to showcase their meticulously created works of technoetic arts, where they communicated and competed with elite global makers.
Students of Art & Technology (Technoetic Arts) of SIVA·DeTao Advanced Class posing with Korean makers
Art & Technology (Technoetic Arts), led by DeTao Master of Technoetic Arts Roy Ascott, is one of the 12 majors of SIVA·DeTao Advanced Class and focuses on the cultivation of new art forms and the promotion of practical innovation. Students learn to interpret and illustrate the expressions of new art forms through critical theory, communication and analysis along with the exchange of emerging technoetic arts at home and abroad.
Six students of the SIVA·DeTao Advanced Class stood out at this year’s Maker Faire as they incorporated machines into art and designed a range of drawing tools, which focused on three types of “system input”, namely sound-wave frequency, words and organism-locomotion trajectory, and are respectively called Resonance, Alan and Aspects of Her Life. These machines attracted numerous makers and viewers during their assembly on the first day.
The students drew a lot of makers and viewers on the first day as they assembled their machines
“The piece Aspects of Her Life is an organism-controlled multi-dimensional painting machine. It utilizes two cameras to track a fish’s trajectory and then draws the projected traces respectively on three sides of the fish tank,” explained its creator Frank Cong as he adjusted the position of the cameras. “While the fish’s behavior determines the painting output, motion of the paintbrushes influences the fish in return, creating a dialogue between an organic life and a mechanical system.”
Aspects of Her Life creator Frank Cong adjusting his work
A foreign visitor taking photos of Cong’s work
On the other side of the booth was the creation of Elaine Lin and Jun Li, called Resonance, which consists primarily of two parts: the first is a simple mechanical motion device, which is fitted with two buttons that control two respective machine arms. Users may adjust the sound-wave frequency and motor speed using the buttons, causing the machine arms to move repeatedly at different rhythms, thus moving the pen to produce overlapping and varying patterns on the paper. The second part is a laser-drawing apparatus that adopts a similar working principle, whereby the use of simple physical principles renders sound frequency into visible images.
Resonance, the creation of Elaine Lin and Jun Li
When asked about their design concept, Lin replied: “An artistic work may be created and rendered in multiple forms. As students of Technoetic Arts, I believe it’s critical to be able to express the concept of our work through different tools and means during the learning process, so as to express the beauty of art using different techniques.”
“Artistic expressions are not only limited to pen and paper. There are many other forms,” added Li. “We may adopt the same method as other makers when partaking in the Maker Faire, but we have a different objective. We focus more on the combination of technology and art. We didn’t imagine the result of our creation when designing; we simply focused on designing a drawing machine. Of course, we were somewhat surprised to find such beautiful patterns produced by the trajectories of it.”
Patterns drawn by Resonance
Lin and Li introducing their work to interested students
Although she also created a drawing machine, third-year student Eachie Zhou explained she hoped to express through her design a “dialogue between man and machinery” or a “translation between human and machine languages”. Zhou remarked that she had never partaken in such events and the experience had helped broaden her horizons. Moreover, she had made many interesting friends during the process and acquired knowledge and skills outside of the classroom.
Alan, created by Eachie Zhou
The patterns produced by Alan after receiving different linguistic input
In addition to offering makers an opportunity to showcase their works, the event provided every participant a great platform for communication and learning. One U.S. maker devoted to high-speed 3D printing approached Cong after seeing his work and offered his experience and suggestions on how to consolidate work stability.
Cong of Art & Technology (Technoetic Arts) interacting with a foreign visitor
Teacher Kim from Roy Ascott Studio offered students all-round guidance and help at the event and showed them other maker groups and works. Kim remarked that the event offered students a great learning and training opportunity, who, compared to last year, seemed much more prepared, which eliminated various problems and ensured the success of their exhibition.
The much-visited student booth
Apart from the star-studded makers’ market, this year’s Maker Faire also featured workshops, forums and shows, which covered emerging technology, technological tools, fun gadgets, traditional handicrafts, innovative education, innovative media and interactive art. Business giants from both home and abroad also took part in this year’s event, including Toshiba, Indiegogo, Beijing Genomics Institute and Seeed Studio. An area showcasing the latest creations was created for developed enterprises and makers’ market, where 26 technologically advanced enterprises in fields such as robots, VR and maker education demonstrated their latest products and achievements to domestic and foreign visitors.
Maker Magician from the U.S. performing a creative and interactive magic show
A will-controlled drone
Children enjoying the project-based creation experience
The Roy Ascott Studio of DeTao offers students a platform for similar science-and-education events both on and off campus, where students may showcase their works and talent. Off-campus events include Internet engineering, exploring and research, technology research and development, professional-field exploration and art appreciation. Led by Master Ascott, students of Art & Technology (Technoetic Arts) exhibited their strengths and won awards such as the Winning Prize at Maker Competition, Young Stars China Award and Interactive Art Award at International Art Design Competition of International Art Development Association.
With its unique master educational model and collaborations with tertiary institutes DeTao Masters Academy gathers over 500 industry-leading masters from over three-dozen countries including Professor Ascott. The academy thoroughly applies the innovative creation concept to its project-based learning and is committed to cultivating new industry talent with international vision.