My thoughts on “of a piece”. Like Zhang Kaiqin’s thoughts, this essay was originally published in Chinese and was written for our WeChat public forum.
最近在东湖的深圳美术馆举办的名为“温度”艺术展上，“握手302”策展团队受邀创作和展出了一个作品“还没定”。这个作品是以“握手302”一贯的创作策略，用社交的方式请所有愿意参与的朋友共同完成创作，我们用带来的废弃旧衣物，配以东门布料城清货的辅料与饰品，用手工编织缝制出心仪的布艺。这一次我们策展团队唯一给出的限制原则就是，不能碰工作台上还未制成的半成品，但对在墙壁上展示的已制成品，任何人任何时候都可以拿下来再加工。这听起来很像是“自由软件”的“开放源代码”的挪用。但是当有人这么问我们时，我们的回答通常是“不，这个作品不是你想的那样，也不是我想的那样。它还没定呢！” ／For its recent invitational exhibition, ThermoMatter, the Shenzhen Art Museum commissioned Handshake 302 create the freeform quilt Of A Piece. Its fabrication incorporated Handshake 302’s commitment to bringing as many people as possible into the creative proccess. We used discarded clothing, accessories and trimmings from the Dongmen Fabric Market, and simple sewing tools to make individual “patches” for the quilt. The rules of engagement were simple: don’t touch a patch that is on the table, but any other patch, piece of clothing, and accessory could be picked up and used in a new patch, or could be sewn together to create larger sections. In a sense, the project was an exercise in “repurposing open access materials” or “fashion making”. However, when asked what the project was about, we simply answered, “That’s still up for grabs!” Continue reading
Shenzhen is gearing up for the Maker Faire, and clearly there’s a bit more than hype in the mix. Seems all sorts of folks are interested in connecting to larger markets via “the Silicon Valley of hardware” — Shenzhen. Of note du jour: the Hax Accelerator Program:
How It Works: Selected teams relocate to our offices in Shenzhen, China for 111 days, where they’ll finalize prototypes and learn to scale their businesses with the help of our awesome full-time staff and extensive mentor network.
Each week, you’ll meet with advisors who will offer feedback on your team’s evolving strategy and prototypes, as well as provide valuable insight about how to scale a company in terms of manufacturing, supply chain management and distribution.
The final 2 weeks of the program will be spent refining your pitch, in preparation for our demo day showcase and launch event in San Francisco. Then it’s time to get some press, meet with investors, and (optionally) kick off a killer crowdfunding campaign!
The world has glommed on to Shenzhen’s Maker culture, but what is often left undetected is just how Maker Plus the city actually is. Yesterday afternoon at Handshake 302, we held the opening for projects by interior design students from the Guangdong Xin’an Polytechnic College. During the opening, the conversation about their work focused on bridging the distance between design and implementation. A key thought came from Lei Sheng, Handshake 302’s master craftsman (seriously, he can make anything): in an information age, information isn’t the most important element for creativity. Instead, the knowledge of making things with our hands–craftsmanship–is the key to a successful design career.
When I first saw the above advertisement for DJI, one of the world’s leading producers of drones, I balked. It seemed to me to be a picture that celebrated spying on the private and unaccessible mansions of the all-too-rich. So, given the unreliability of my American gut reactions in China, I asked the young women standing next to me, “What do you see in that advertisement?” She responded, “a pretty landscape.” I was like, “What about the dock? The big mansion? The coastline that resembles Newport’s?” She looked at the advert again, nodded, and then tentatively added, “We see things differently because of cultural difference.” Continue reading
Dangerous Prototypes has blogged about their experiences in Shenzhen, including introductions to foreign hackers, their work with (now nationally renown) Seeed Studios, and geek tours. Worth browsing.
ongoing insights into Shenzhen’s creative ecology: and cockroach parts! who knew?