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Introducing Brain Waves: Haptic Thinking

82 Years of Testing Screens, Felix Steindl
82 Years of Testing Screens, Felix Steindl
82 Years of Testing Screens, Felix Steindl
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Published date
14 September 2016

While we’re putting the final touches to Brain Waves – our forthcoming exhibition that takes a tour around some of the best projects from this year’s graduates – let us share a few of our favourite things from the show.

Brain Waves maps out four different kinds of design intelligence; here we focus on Haptic Thinking. These designers connect head with hand, grounding their actions in tacit intelligence, employing both the sensual and practical aspects of making to support their thinking. Some are alchemists, transforming base materials into something magical while others coax humanity from digital technologies.

The Depth of Light by Orla Lawn (BA Textile Design)

The Depth of Light, Orla Lawn (BA Textile Design)

The Depth of Light, Orla Lawn (BA Textile Design)

“I work on paper and then with my hands and then back to paper. My ideas won’t progress if I’m not chopping and changing between the two approaches, it lets my brain problem-solve in two different ways.”

Lawn combines casting and weaving to create a hybrid manufacturing method that results in three-dimensional textiles. Her pieces showcase the strength and versatility of silk fibres as well as the unique, unpredictable forms of poured materials. Each piece is designed to cast beautiful shadows; geometric blocks joined by sinewy lines of thread and under tension from their own weight, they sway and quiver in unexpected ways.

82 Years of Testing Screens by Felix Steindl (BA Graphic Design)

82 Years of Testing Screens, Felix Steindl

82 Years of Testing Screens, Felix Steindl (Photo: James Barnett)

While you might expect Haptic Thinking to be dedicated to craft and hand making, we’ve broadened the perspective to include work that explores the relationship between hand and machine.

Felix Steindl has taken inspiration from the history of static test signals broadcast to televisions when the transmitter was active but no program was being shown. They incorporated  graphic elements to test a range of different parameters such as colour, brightness, ratio, alignment, etc. depending on the device used.

82 Years of Testing Screens is an intuitive and interactive installation using these test signals. With a simple remote control, the audience can actively adjust all of the visuals and parameters, as opposed to acting as passive viewers, helping them to understand the basics of electronic screens and communication in a playful way.

Free Tape by Edwin Mohney (BA Fashion)

“Design intelligence is saying as much as possible with only the essentials… as designers we have a responsibility to enjoy our process, frustrate ourselves in seeking answers and about all be brave.”

Free Tape is the manifestation of personal fear. Mohney created the collection through a practical catharsis by casting himself, and his loved ones, in tape with the intention of ridding himself of his fears. The process of ‘taping’ is an integral aspect of the work representing an instantaneous construction of a fashion “look”.