Layered Chiffon Process 

Layered Chiffon is a Seton Hall University Digital Humanities Fellowship project. I am working with Susan Reiser to create this interactive data driven installation. Layer Chiffon will be on display at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY Saturday, April 8 from 12 noon to 5 pm

The concept: 

The forms: 

Data for first 3 forms (from upper left to lower right)

1. GENDER ...  consumer decisions and representation in marketing and media

2. FOOD ... the percentage of chemical agents in 10 popular packaged food items 

3. MATERIAL ... From the EPA: Total Municipal Solid Waste Generation (by Material), 2013
254 Million Tons (before recycling)

The process of making them real:


Concept Model:

Fusion 360 screenshot of pan designed by data set profile

Fusion 360 screenshot of pan designed by data set profile

profile curve in black, will be drawn based on data set inputs, each pan form will be consistent in height and diameter

profile curve in black, will be drawn based on data set inputs, each pan form will be consistent in height and diameter

"Layered Chiffon" is a proposal for a visual art installation of interactive objects that will provide a non-linear narrative. I will create 3-9 custom silicone bundt pan forms (designed by data set inputs) that will be fabricated by molds milled by a CNC router. Molds will be used to slip cast silicone rubber hollow pan forms. Pressure sensors will be installed and connected to a  projector via Raspberry Pi. When a pan form is pressed by the viewer a video will project. Each pan will have a unique video when pressed one at a time. When two pans are pressed together a different video will project. The video collection will be a mix of animations created by the artist and samples of vintage advertisements for processed foods and social public service announcements. 

The forms are generated by a parametric 3D modeling program set up to accept data input. The data used to “draw” the forms is collected, or sourced statistics that begin a narrative. The concept of this piece to create a non-linear narrative by providing historical cultural references, through consumer marketing and educational PSAs combined with artist generated animations and videos. The viewer will be able to navigate the work independently. The goal of the installation is to highlight connections and associations based on the following concepts: processed food, domestic science, chemical fertilizers, sustainability, traditional gender roles, synthetic materials, and marketing influence on the consumer. This visual/interactive art project is interdisciplinary in nature and potential discipline collaborations will be investigated with Computer Science/ Data Viz, Environmental Sciences, Statistics, History of Domestic Science, and the Library. 

This project has the potential to be an example of how the studio arts fit within the digital humanities. The visual nature of the sculptural art forms, storytelling through an implied narrative or non-linear narrative (through animations and film), and a deviation from traditional data visualizations by using data to inform the profile curves of an object through custom code created to draw the patterns informed by a spreadsheet but within the preset form language of the artist make this a unique approach to digital humanities research. It  also fits within the theme of Space 154, “storytelling," were it can be installed and I can run workshops for students and faculty. 

Upon completion, "Layered Chiffon" will be installed at Seton Hall, in one or more locations, to allow the campus community to interact and explore the work. The installation will be designed to be easily installed, simply requiring a power source and a dimly lit room with a blank wall for projecting. The installation will be self-contained on a table the projector mounted underneath. I propose to install the work and present a talk or two on our “digital workflow” involved in the development and creation of the installation. My collaborator, Susan Reiser is scheduled to be on campus March 13 to talk with my Digital Workflows (ADIM 2601) class and we would be able to present a campus wide lecture on our collaboration on that date. The workflow will also be able to be broken down into smaller units of exploration. I would propose a workshop to be held in Space 154 to walk interested students and faculty through a tutorial creating forms for 3D printing based on data inputs. I would also be available to visit with classes and small groups of faculty to talk about introducing digital technologies into creative processes and collaboration. The installation is meant to be accessible and the goal would be to present it to the SHU community in a visible and interactive way. 

This is the second major project collaboration between Susan Reiser, lecturer in the Departments of Computer Science, Engineering, and New Media and Associate Dean of Natural Sciences at UNC Asheville. The results of the first collaboration Clever on Sunday (2016) were exhibited at the Dorsky Museum of Art (New Paltz, NY) in an exhibition titled Made for You: New Directions in Contemporary Design February – June 2016. 

sketch for 9 unique pan designs 

sketch for 9 unique pan designs 

example of hollow cast silicone rubber pan form Strawberry Kiwi Jello, brooch

example of hollow cast silicone rubber pan form

Strawberry Kiwi Jello, brooch