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Material Connexion Symposium



Kennedy & Violich Architecture
Sheila Kennedy and Frano Violich
Architecture, Boston
Portable Light Project

Energy efficient light for Huichol Tribe in Mexico, and it helps sustain their weaving culture. Over 100 design iterations to comply with regulation of mailing lithium batteries (3.7V), and has social implications (these lights charge faster when a community of these modular pieces charge together.

Gives off 100 lumens of light (40 lumens is average), uses 3.7 V (1,800 mAmps), charges for 3 hours, and runs for 10 hours.

Other Projects: Electroluminescent Plywood Desk, Sever Hall (Harvard University Faculty of Arts and Sciences, skylight in the middle level of the building that simulates natural environmental conditions), Pillow/Cloud-like structure canopy on pier of 34th Street in New York (lighting and projection)


David Gibson
Two Twelve Associates
Environmental Graphic Design

Other Projects: Signage for Central Park Zoo, other commercial buildings, Chicago Streetscape signage, Radio City Music Hall, MoMA in Queens, Children’s Hospital in Boston, signage in scenic Hudson

Ecofab (fabric/solvents)
Windsor Fireform, LLC


Interior Design

Other Projects: uses materials like fiber optics, LEDs, bamboo, washi paper (for walls), recycled materials, biophilia (plants), solar panels, “Sumac” (weaving culture in Armenia), went to Africa to employ and sustain beading culture

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, www.usgbc.org)
LOHAS (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability)


Sam Hecht & Kim Colin
Industrial Facility
Industrial Design, London

Sam Hecht use to work for IDEO, but left to start this company, which design primarily for Muji. They pride themselves on building working prototypes rather than digital prototypes.

Current projects include networked objects, like: Mixi (camera cellphone enclosure that uploads photos easily to Japanese Social software using stickers/physical tags), more info on Mixi (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mixi, http://mashable.com/2006/07/08/mixi-japans-biggest-social-network/), Cellphone with LED light display that could also be used as an alarm clock.

Other Projects: http://www.industrialfacility.co.uk/if.html, Muji coffee maker, Muji fan, Magnetic knife rack, and knife for Taylor’s Eye Witness, Flex Lamp for Droog

LuckyBite (electronics design, more info here: http://open.bbc.co.uk/labs/2006/london/luckybite/)


Cao Perrot Studio
Andy Cao and Xavier Perrot
Landscape Design

They use recycled materials in their design. Glass Garden and Lullabye garden uses 9 to 9.5 ton of recycled crushed glass to create texture.

Other Projects: http://www.caoperrotstudio.com/projects.htm, Bill Massey for public art titled Cocoons, 100 Hearts (made with the scarcity of deaf coconuts due to genetically engineered foods), Medici Fountain, Nantucket Rose, Jardin des Hespérides (lantern/perfume garden)


Sandy Chilewich
Textile Design, New York

Created “plynyl,” innovative processes of woven vinyl to make placemats, tableware, floor mats, car mats, carpeting and bags.

Other Projects: She’s famous for “Ray bowls” and “Ray trays,” and “Harry-Carry” named after her two sons.


Patrick Jouin
Product designer, France

Designs experimental chairs using ABS rapid prototyping.


Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle
Fine Artist and Professor at Art Institute of Chicago

Motto: “Not utility bur futility.”

Keywords: information, science, arts, sculpture, media, McArthur fellow, fabrication, abs rapid prototyping

Translated X, Y coordinates of a glacier in Ottawa to recreate a mesh iteration of an iceberg (Buckminster Fuller inspired). Some of these sculptures scrape weather data and broadcast it online. 3D data of clouds to create cloud sculpture (“Cloud Prototype #1”)

Other Projects: DNA fingerprint in New Bronx Library, Cryogenics sperm bank, El Nino Effect, Bullfight ring with IR sensors that look for aliens, Nocturn/white poppy sculpture/surveillance, bullet-proof umbrella (made of kevlar), Robert Oppenheimer media installation in purgatory, Colin Powell/sand toilets/misinformation of biological and chemical weapons


Franz von Holzhausen
Mazda, Orange County

Rebranding of Mazda using Japanese terminology like “nagare,” which means “flow.” They use single-side hydro fluid stamping to form hoods.

Other Projects: taking scraps of leather and stamping them to create a larger swatch of materials, single-side hydro fluid stamping used to create automobile hoods, working with Nike to redesign material


DDCLAB (acronym for design, development and concepts)
Robert Crivello and Savania Davies-Keiller

Appareil Design, New York

They try to use high-tech and eco-friendly textiles to create appareil. They use some materials made out of soy and corn, organic cottons, dye fabrics with fermented persimmons, pomegrante and other fruits. David Bowie, Lauren Hiill and Lenny Kravitz are some clients. Materials are natural fibers, man-made fibers, and fusion of natural and man-mad fabrics. They use Tyvek (lycra-fused recycled paper, material like FEDEX envelopes). Some polyester and polyethylene materials help keep body temperature, resists abrasion, and not crushable. Use metal-woven fabrics, called “enox,” to resist electromagnetic waves. They line all the pockets of their appareil with enox so that as you pass and RFID tracker, it can’t take your personal information, also resists cell phone waves. Other materials used are Abacca (Japanese Tyvek, extremely thin and light in weight), bamboo fabric (has texture of linen), silks dyed in mud, spider silk, solar panels, and leather fused with lycra to give leather elasticity.

Thery’re experimenting with making “liquid cocktails” that have aromatherapy and antibacterial properties (like aloe, mint and sage), and they are trying to fuse this into cotton (not sure what their process is about).

Other Projects: Dupont (sponsors their research), Nike, Gap, Reebok


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