Varvara Guljajeva (ET) - The development and role of digital fabrication

Prague - December 6, 2012

Varvara Guljajeva & Mar Canet Sola present their paper within the panel Balance-Unbalance: Can the Arts Help to Save the World? at International conference MutaMorphosis in Prague, Czech Republic.

This paper argues about the importance of textile manufacturing in the age of digital fabrication. Today, the tools of desktop fabrication have been developing rapidly, at the same time the first digital personal manufacturing tool for home-use that is the electronic knitting machine from 1976, has been forgotten.

The first part of this article aims to bring forward changes in manufacturing industry starting from the Industrial Revolution up to the today’s tendencies towards one-person industries. The phenomena of Fab Labs and open hardware are also discussed, while underlining the absence of textile fabrication.

Through several case studies, examples, and detailed technical modification of an obsolete electronic knitting machine, we aim to demonstrate the efficiency and future possibilities for applying a knitting machine in the field of personal manufacturing and desktop fabrication.

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