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RAE 2008

Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design


On the Fringe

On the Fringe is an exhibition in the Parker Gallery at the Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design, from 14 to 21 September 2007. It will complement the European Textile Network Annual Conference digital//craft hosted by the department. There will also be digital//craft workshops on 15 September and from the 18 to 21 September at the Digital Manufacturing Centre in the Department.

Invitation: click for full size

On the Fringe will present the outcomes of the collaborative research project undertaken by
Tracy Hunt, Janette Harris, Pat Moloney, Kaye Newman, Gina Pierce and Paula Ashbrooke, who are concerned with the meeting of traditional craft methodologies and globally vital digital technologies. A key working practice for On the Fringe is collaborative research - between members and technologies. The work-in-progress will also be represented, as working practices are as much outcomes as resolved design works. Formal presentations will be organised as a seminar introducing the digital//craft workshops on 15 September 2007, to enable a discursive dialogue between European Textiles Networkers and On the Fringe.

The collaborators are variously engaged with Auto Cad, Adobe Photoshop, 3D studio, Rhino and other software programs as an interface with 2D digital printing, 3Ddigital printing, laser cutting and digital embroidery and weaving. They are all well-schooled in traditional design methodologies such as drawing, model making and material prototyping.

Key research questions
On the Fringe is concerned with what kind of changes are required in so called traditional design methodologies and practice when these practices involve state of the art digital technologies. Furthermore, what results are gained through fundamentally changing to digital processes? On the Fringe also asks: "how satisfying and creative is 'virtual' design, with only a digital interface at our fingertips, compared to the act of weaving, cutting, stitching, printing and manipulating cloth?"

Influence of Location.
On the Fringe also evokes other borders: those navigated by the collaborators working either with spaces of habitat or with textile interiors of these spaces, where interior textiles can contribute to the comfort, well being and happiness of people within architectural space.

The collaborators are also concerned with the border that they physically occupy in London: E1. The University location, lies between the prosperous City of London and one of the poorest districts in London. Tower Hamlets itself has always served as a border where London meets a global space.

Tower Hamlets and the City of London have developed through a rich and complex history as a consequence of the River Thames, an artery, through which London has connected with the world. The Thames has brought to the City goods, wealth and global connections and these have inevitably travelled through the city's varied migrant labourers, traders, craftsmen and women, themselves global in origin. Each member of On the Fringe is also concerned conceptually with fringes and liminal places.


Conference organiser - Paula Ashbrooke
Tel: +44 (0)207 3201880 p.ashbrooke@londonmet.ac.uk

Conference administrator - Maliha Shakoor m.shakoor@londonmet.ac.uk

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