Active Textile

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum – The Senses: Design Beyond Vision Exhibition, 2018

Small perforations on a composite textile open and close in response to a light source. The Self-Assembly Lab at MIT investigates programmable materials that can “sense” and respond to their environment without robotic mechanisms. This Active Textile, created with Designtex and Steelcase for the exhibition, demonstrates how programmable materials can enter our living and work spaces. As a textile in a window, the material’s perforations could be programmed to close in response to bright sunlight, providing necessary shading, or open on a cloudy day.

Self-Assembly Lab, MIT (Cambridge, Massachusetts, founded 2013); Steelcase (Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, founded 1912); Designtex (New York, New York, USA, founded 1961); Textile combined with active polymers; Courtesy of Self Assembly Lab, MIT
Self-Assembly Lab Team: Schendy Kernizan, Andrew Moorman, Megan Fu, Bjorn Sparrman, Jared Laucks, Skylar Tibbits
Designtex Team: Matthew Noterman, Kyle Wilson, Shaina Garfield, Carol Derby
Steelcase Team: Paul Noll, Sharon Tracy
Govmark: Phyllis Pettit