The 2018 TEK-TILES program brought together a team of 14 highly creative masterminds to work alongside the BF+DA’s Apparel Production team and Research Fellows to invent wearable products that integrate technology into smart garments and functional textiles. Last year’s TEK-TILES have been displayed in three public exhibitions and are soon to be included in the Material Connexion Innovation library. This year the BF+DA is developing manufacturable products for commercialization.

This uniquely collaborative project worked across professions to envision, design and manufacture knitwear, e-textiles, wearables and product designs focusing on improving the human experience especially for elders, children and people challenged by disabilities. Additional attention focused on ensuring sustainable supply chains and ethical production. This summer’s international TEK-TILES team included industrial designers, fashion designers, interaction designers, textile engineers, coders, AR/VR programmers, sustainability experts and ethnographers from eight universities.

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Tek-Tiles Team

Pedro G. C. Oliveira

Pedro G. C. Oliveira was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil. He is an Art Director and Interactive Designer based in New York City currently a research resident at the Interactive Telecommunications Program in NYU. His work history combines experiences in visual-effects, graphic design and motion graphics, interfaces and applications, interactive installations and code-generated art pieces.

It is his strong belief, that creativity solutions should be merged with technological resources and information not only in the name of innovation, but also to stimulate human potential and to improve human relations.

Mireia Lopez

Mireia Lopez is the founder and creative force behind the brand and collaborative guerrilla studio Milo Tricot.

Mireia Lopez was brought up in Barcelona, Spain. Being a designer was an organic process, having grown up in her family’s manufacturing business, she learned how to manipulate fabric and operate industrial machines at a very early age.

After graduating from Felicidad Duce (LCI) in the Arts and Techniques of fashion in Barcelona, she was recruited by Mango in the early 90s, and within a few years she became Mango’s designer and a key member of the creative team at a time when the company was riding high on the success of the new brand image and the expansion of more than 200 stores worldwide. Her career took her to a different path from there, spending the next twenty 25 years working for some of the fashion industry’s leading brands and retailers in Europe and in the United States, as well as creating innovative concepts and avant-garde knitwear collections for runway designers including Miguel Adrover, Zac Posen, Cushnie et Ochs and others.

Mireia’s creative vision and design language continues to be inspired by her intuitive perception of form, movement and functionality. As a brand creative and consultant she keeps pushing and leading the industry towards sustainability, craftsmanship and innovative production methods.

Liza Stark

Liza Stark is a designer, educator, and multi-disciplinary artist based in New York whose work explores how craft, technology, and play impact how we learn as individuals and communities.

Currently, she teaches in the MFA Design + Technology program at Parsons and is a research fellow at the t.LAB in the Brooklyn Design + Fashion Accelerator at the Pratt Institute. Past adventures include leading the community team at littleBits, designing games and playful professional development at Institute of Play, and facilitating many workshops for all sorts of people on electronics, eTextiles, des ign, and games. Her work has been shown at the International Symposium on Wearable Computers, NYCxDESIGN Week, Moulins Paillard, Maker Faire, Open Hardware Summit, CIANT, the Tangible, Embedded, and Embodied Interfaces Conference, and more.

She takes play very seriously, loves her sewing machine and soldering iron equally, and considers open knowledge sharing as important as breathing. She will eventually rewrite computational history from non-cis white male perspective.

Current research interests:

Personal, ethical, and privacy implications of wearable technology and data.
Sustainable eTextiles (considering material awareness, labor implications, and interventions in current consumer behaviors).
Recrafting rituals, narratives, and traditions through computationally enhanced objects.
Soft interface design and the creation of open toolkits to facilitate their development.
Electronic craft as a tool and pathway to learning programming.

Jesse Jur

Dr. Jesse Jur is an Assistant Professor of Textile Engineering, Chemistry & Science at NC State University’s College of Textiles. The College of Textiles at N.C. State is the global leader in textile education and research. Having undertaken his undergraduate studies at the University of South Carolina, and then spending three years in Silicon Valley, he earned his Ph.D.in Materials Science and Engineering at N.C. State. Dr. Jur has spent his career researching the interfaces of technologies: from semiconductor device development to textile designs. His current research focuses on integration of systems electronics into wearable platforms for energy harvesting and monitoring of a person’s environmental and physiological state. He is the Technology Thrust Leader for ‘Wearability and Data’ for ASSIST (Advanced Self-Powered Systems of Integrated Sensors and Technologies), a National Science Foundation Nanosystems Engineering Research Center (NERC).  He is also the co-director of the Textile Engineering and Textile Technology Engineering Design Program in the College of Textiles, an intensive course that interfaces students and industry for innovative product development.

Carly Kvietok

Carly Kvietok is a senior at N.C. State University’s College of Textiles, where she is pursuing a B.S. in Fashion & Textile Design. Carly loves to work from interdisciplinary perspectives in fashion studios and STEM-based research. Last fall, she created samples of ECG-monitoring athletic shirts within the Nano EXtended Textiles (NEXT) research group, and studied abroad at London College of Fashion this past spring. She is always looking for new ways to combine her passion for design with her interest in innovative technologies.

James Litvak

James Litvak is a transdisciplinary designer, artist and researcher based in New York and London. He is currently a Graduate student In the MID (Masters of Industrial Design) at Pratt Institute. He is the 2015 International Business plan development award recipient from NIBS (Network of International Business Schools) for the development of a business structure for Sustainable manufacturing in Luxury fashion. His focus on material, technological and form exploration has led to collaborate in material research projects with ENSAD (École nationale supérieure des arts décoratifs) and Iris Van Herpen in Paris.

Carlos Michael Rodriguez

Carlos Michael is a programmer and game designer, studying Computer Science at NYU. His hobbies include cooking while listening to loud Cuban music and designing interactive experiences and games with his friends.

Imaan Sattar

Imaan Sattar is a New York based designer pursuing an undergraduate degree in Industrial Design at Pratt Institute. Her work is often experimental, pushing materials to their limits in search of new ways to contextualize them.

Tzu-Ching Lin

From Taipei, Taiwan, Tzu-Ching Lin is currently studying at the School of Visual Arts in the Products of Design MFA program. He is a culture enthusiast with a passion for east meets west. He is eager to share his personal perspective on technology in regards to its relationship with humanity.

Keanan Pucci

Keanan Pucci is currently a student at NYU’s Tisch School of the Ars., majoring in Game Design. He designs physical and digital interactive experiences, with a focus on utilizing virtual reality and artificial reality. He also holds a passion for performing with his acapella group, jazz choir, and in various theatrical settings at N.Y.U

Rachel Raineri

Rachel Raineri is a recent graduate from NC State University with a BS in Textile Engineering and minor in Spanish. She has participated in research at the University of Southern Mississippi, completed a Wearable Wellness project infusing essential oils into fabric, and worked on an e-textiles project integrating LEDs into fabric controlled by conductive thread capacitance sensors. While at NC State she co-founded and developed a chapter of Food Recovery Network which aims to dually reduce food waste and hunger by redirecting campus food waste to local shelters. Human connection is undeniably one of her favorite reasons for existence.

Joshe Ordonez

Joshe Ordonez is a Creative Strategist and Sustainable Fashion Designer from Ecuador. She holds a Masters in Design Management from Pratt Institute and currently lectures on Sustainable Fashion and the relation between Design and Crafts in educational institutes both in Ecuador and New York. Her current project “Loop Fairtrade,” is a digital platform supporting Ecuadorian artisans achieving economic and social development and connecting them with other international designers interested in a co-creation model.

Courtney Lee

Courtney Lee will be graduating from North Carolina State University with a degree in Textile Engineering and a minor in Graphic Communication. As an innovative thinker, she revels in being challenged to think outside the box and create new solutions to problems. With a vast set of skills, Courtney has gained experience in creating ads for magazines while interning at N2 Publishing, learned how to support a nationwide telecommunication network for digital signage at Nikcor and was also sponsored by HanesBrand Inc. to create prototypes of a 3D printed concept garment. Aside from her studies and work, she is also a member of NC State’s Equestrian Dressage Club and Pi Beta Phi fraternity for women.

Hubert Chen

Hubert Chen believes design and design thinking can help save the world. As an Industrial Design student at Pratt, he strives to hone his design skills and visual communication and is strongly focused in future technologies and how they are going to be used and shaped.

Chloe Falkenheim

Chloe Falkenheim is currently studying at Oberlin College and Conservatory, majoring in Comparative Literature and minoring in Hispanic Studies. Next semester, she will undertake an independent research project next semester on bio- textiles, and has worked on projects with musical textiles and sensors. She has interned at Vaute Couture, a sustainable, cruelty-free brand and also worked as costume director and designer for opera and circus productions.

Ray LC

Ray is a creative synthesist working to make new channels of communication amongst humans, and between humans and the tools they create. After working extensively in machine learning and neuroscience research, Ray is looking to apply state-of-the-art understanding about human behavior and smart object design to textiles, materials, devices, and garments that improve the plight of humans on this planet that they are responsible for.

Tala Barbotin

Tala Barbotin Khalidy was exposed to fashion design from an early age by walking the streets of Paris growing up and through her interactions with Lebanese craftsmen at her grandmother’s store. She developed an awareness of intercultural exchanges in textiles that increased during her studies at Parsons: The New School for Design. All aspects of her work present a strong appeal toward the ideas of social and cultural interaction, influenced by her
background and work experience in Paris, Beirut, and New York.
An initial interest in hand sewing and embroidery has deepened over time by skills in sewing, pattern making, and draping; a focused interest in handcraft has enriched through textile experimentations such as hand knitting, weaving, screen and block printing, and natural dyeing techniques. Her current practice places a continuing emphasis on embroidery as well as sustainable and ethical fashion alternatives.

Rafael El Baz

Rafael El Baz is a London based designer currently completing his Masters in Design Products at the Royal College of Art. Since graduating from Central Saint Martins, Rafael has gained experience across a wide range of sectors, including material innovation, interactive art, luxury goods, apparel, branding and graphics. As well as working with both established and start-up companies, Rafael has exhibited internationally, and has won awards and recognition for his design and methodology. Through an uncompromising focus on sustainability and a fascination with nature, Rafael’s work not only shows a readiness to innovate and re-imagine objects through new materials and techniques, but also aims to tackle the mounting social and environmental challenges of the 21 st century.