Mechanical Tide

My friend Marta recently captured this photo of University of Chicago grad students playing with my sculpture, Mechanical Tide, in the lobby of the James Franck Institute. It's been on display there for 7 years now. 

The marbles shift in interesting patterns until they don't. So someone has to reset them from time to time to keep the pattern going. Apparently this group of grad students has taken on the role.

Extraordinary Effort, Spectacular Failure

Extraordinary Effort, Spectacular Failure opened last Friday, March 6, a group show from the Hatch artist incubator program at Chicago Artists Coalition.

I have a new piece in it, a column of knitted Kevlar and circuits, suspended on an embroidery hoop from the gallery's 14' ceiling. In order to protect the delicate circuitry, I soldered the piece onsite. Ultimately, it turned out better than I could have hoped, and really pops at night.

I feel like this is a sketch for a larger work so I don't quite have a title for it. I'll likely develop the project further as part of my upcoming Public Engagement Maker Residency at UIC/Mana Contemporary.

If we missed you at the opening, join us for the closing event, Thursday March 26.

***New City reviewed and recommended the show here.

ATTiny84 & the Tiny Programmer

I like programming my ATTinys with the Tiny Programmer. (How can you not love a tool the size of a stick of gum?) But I couldn't find info for mapping the pin connections for the ATTiny84. So I did a little research. Here are the connections:

ATTiny84  --->   Tiny Programmer

  • 1  ---> +
  • 14 ---> -- (minus sign)
  • 4  ---> (unlabeled)
  • 7  ---> 0
  • 8  ---> 1
  • 9  ---> 2

Works great. 

Passap Knitting Machines: Donation and Deep Clean

Last month, I received a phone call from Mary, one of the clever ladies who runs the InterKnit Machine Knitters Club. Someone was getting rid of some Passap Duomatic knitting machines, and would I like one? Heck, yeah! I replied, and could you also grab one for Pumping Station: One?

So, two days later Mary drops off two very heavy knitting machines, and several very heavy boxes of carriages, accessories, tension rods, and books. The machines are ancient, crusted with yellowed oil and blackened lint. Luckily, one of the books is "Be Your Own Passap Paramedic", which gave us a starting point to deep cleaning these machines.

Technologic Opening

Catching up on my blogging. Images of my works Electronic Damask and Knitted VU Meter at Chicago Art Department in October. We pulled Electronic Damask off of its frame for this show. I think people appreciated being able to see both sides, and it cast an interesting shadow.

These great images were taken by Leo Selvaggio, show curator Chuck Przybyl, and Mike Nourse. The full album is available on Flickr.

Blog to Academia

New issue of Leonardo Music Journal is out and I'm on page 77, "Engaging the Audience: A Primer for Sound Art in Public Spaces."

The article started out as the inaugural post of this very blog, one year ago.