This Wednesday we'll be looking at robotic masks (involving conductive felt, servos, lilypads and the like), and discuss the topic of ethical making with a Fair-trade, Fair-Mine Goldsmith, Ryan Taylor. Here is the event link, with details posted below: http://torontowearables12.eventbrite.com/The Toronto Wearables Meetup is a gathering of people interested in wearable technology, fashion, wearable electronics, soft circuits, electronic textiles, emerging materials, and other creative and innovative approaches to things that live on the body. This Meetup is a gathering of artists, fashion designers, industrial designers, textile enthusiasts, engineers, researchers, students, and anyone interested in these emerging and intersecting fields. Following the artist talks we will have a Show-and-Tell from previous speakers who will update us on their projects old, new, and in-progress. Please note that this TWMeetup will be filmed by CBC, who are doing a short segment on the Toronto Wearables community.
Rachael Kess is a fibre student at OCAD University and she wants to START A HOLISTIC REVOLUTION. Working with the idea that BODIES ARE THE ONE THING WE ALL HAVE IN COMMON, Rachael likes to subvert technology in order to engage her viewers/participants in a critical dialogue about how BALANCE CAN BE FOUND BETWEEN BODY AND TECHNOLOGY. She makes masks and puppets using wet/needle felting, weaving and electronics and uses her electro-textile objects in performance, often while naked. Rachael started making masks and puppets in order to CONNECT HER TEACHING/HEALING PRACTICE WITH HER CREATIVE PRACTICE. When not naked and masked, Rachael teaches yoga and practices Thai yoga massage fully clothed.
Ryan Taylor is a graduate goldsmith, chief designer & co-founder of the Fair Trade Jewellery Company (FTJCo) which by Valentines day 2011 was the only company in North America, and only one of a handful internationally to produce using Fairtrade Fairmined Certified gold. Ryan’s documentary about these metals 'The Last Gold Rush' is available online: ftjco.com/fairtrade
He currently sits as Co-Chair of the Responsible Jewellery Council’s (RJC) Standards Committee which has published the industry’s first Chain of Custody system for Gold & Platinum metals, and has recently taken on the role of Chair for the RJC’s sub-committee on Diamond Chain of Custody. In March Ryan will continue his work visiting artisanal Diamond miners in Central African Republic & Liberia with the US State Dept. & USAid as part of a program called PRADD (Property Rights and Artisanal Diamond Development). An initiative much like Fairtrade Fairmined which could improve the lives and rights of workers and their communities.