Skip to toolbar

Colloquy: Extending Oneself and One’s Community

Smart textiles and wearable technology is an emerging interdisciplinary field, bringing artists and designers together with engineers and scientists, as well as scholars from communication, the humanities and social sciences. The leading edge is coming from academic, art, and research institutions worldwide, as well as innovative local arts groups and startup companies, and primarily in the field of wearable and ubiquitous computing. 

This event will bring together leading experts, faculty and students in wearable technology, art, design and media, to share insights, stories and multi-cultural content from Singapore and the region. They will discuss creative works, analyse new developments, and catalyse new ideas and research directions in the field of wearable technology.

This colloquy is organised part of the exhibition, Sense and Sensuality, and generously funded by the Centre for Liberal Arts and Social Sciences (CLASS). Special thanks to the staff at ADM Library for their support in making this event possible.

Wednesday, 29 October 2014
2.00pm to 7.00pm

ADM Library
School of Art, Design and Media
Nanyang Technological University
81, Nanyang Drive Singapore 637458

Who are the Speakers?

Ms. Alexandra Murray-Leslie

Chicks of Speed



Alexandra Murray-Leslie is an artscientist and pop music-composer working in the medium of Fashion Acoustics (wearable musical instrument design) for ARTFORMANCES. She is a PhD candidate, Creativity and Cognition Studios, The University of Technology, Sydney, lecturer at Interface Cultures, University of Art and Design Linz, and co-founder and member of Chicks on Speed, an internationally renowned trans-disciplinary live-art collective.

Alex has published her research widely, including the journal for Critical Studies in Fashion and Beauty 2014 and presented at conferences; SECAC, 70th South Eastern College Art Conference, “Colour in Fashion” Costume Colloquium, NIME (New Interfaces for Musical Expression), Xcommunicate, Queensland University of Technology and JAMarrama, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, 2014; SEAM, Sydney, ISWC, International Symposium for Wearable Computers, 2013; Institute for Music and Acoustics Lab, Gigahertz Festival, ZKM Centre for Art and Media, Karlsruhe, 2012.In 2012–2013, Alex held the position of Entertainment Manager at the 34th America’s Cup World Series and was co-director of Diane Pernet´s “A Shaded View on Fashion Film”, CaixaForum Museum, Barcelona, 2013.

Alex’s current practice-based research focuses on the development of interactive footwear designs, theBipedShoes for dance practice and movement notation with possible health applications.

At this colloquy, Alex will be doing a show-and-tell on some of her research and creations.

Mr. Dinu Bodiciu

Lasalle College of the Arts



Dinu Bodiciu is a Romanian-born designer. After graduating a Bachelors degree in Pharmacy and one in Graphic Design he decided to further his studies following a Master course in Fashion Design and Technology at London College of Fashion.
The graduation collection brought him immediate success by having one on the outfits being worn by Lady Gaga on her way to Jay Leno’s Show in 2011.

Continuing his pursuit in developing fashion and fashion artifacts in relation to the human body and psychoanalysis he continued to design both garment and hat collections all made by himself.

At this moment, the ready-to-wear line of luxury Baseball Caps that he designs is stoked by renowned boutiques all around the world, from Colette in Paris to Ca4La in Tokyo and Koon in Seoul.

Three years ago he started to share his knowledge and passion for fashion design as a lecturer in Fashion at the Norwich University of the Arts and University of Creative Arts in United Kingdom. Three months ago he became part of the Fashion Design and Textile team at the Lasalle College of the Arts in Singapore.

His talk entitled, “The pleasure of Disguise” will touch on the following:

  1. Introduction: key moments in my career
  2. Psychoanalysis and visual representation – Masters collection
  3. Mask – an extension of one’s self
  4. Technology in the service of a designer’s work
  5. Casual versus Luxury for fashion accessories or “the shape in not enough”

Mr. Stefan Ivanov

Stepsss, Smart Wearables Ltd.



Stefan is a master graduate of RWTH-Aachen, Germany in Media Informatics with specialisation in Human-Computer Interaction and UX Design. After graduation he worked for an year on a few mobile application projects at Wacom Europe. Towards the end of 2013 he started the first long-term educational course on UX Design in Bulgaria. In the beginning of 2014 a team led by him joined a local startup acceleration program with their project Stepsss – a smart layer for the shoes that monitors the walking and running behaviour of its wearer.

At this session, Stefan will be sharing on Applying user experience principles to wearable technology and smart textiles. 

Despite that many consider the wearable technology as an emerging field, researchers in the field of Human-Computer Interaction have already done and published a lot on the topic. As a result some key usability concepts have been established, providing guidance to designers of wearable products such as the term wearability, the design for eyes-free interaction, the provision of multmodal feedback and the appropriateness of gestures to flexible surfaces. By following these rules one is much more likely to succeed in his quest not only to design a beautifully looking product, but also one that delivers a great user experience to its wearer. The talk will conclude with a short discussion about two wearable devices designed by the speaker: FabriTouch – a textile touch input surface embedded in one’s trousers and Stepsss – the smart shoe layer that tracks your running and walking behavior.

Associate Professor Louis-Philippe Demers

School of Art, Design and Media, Nanyang Technology University



Louis-Philippe Demers makes large-scale installations and performances. His projects can be found in theatre, opera, subway stations, art museums, science museums, music events and trade shows. Over the past two decades, he participated in more than seventy artistic and stage productions and has built more than 325 machines.

Demers’ works have been featured at major venues such as Theatre de la Ville, Lille 2004, Expo 1992 and 2000, Sonambiente, ISEA, Siggraph and Sonar. He received five mentions and one distinction at Ars Electronica, the first prize of Vida 2.0, mentions at Vida 12.0 and 15.0, a recommendation at the Japan Media Arts Festival, the Interactive prize for Lightforms 98 and six prizes for Devolution including two Helpmann Awards.

Demers was Professor of Digital Media and Exhibit Design/Scenography at the Hochschule fuer Gestaltung Karlsruhe, affiliated to the world renowned Zentrum fuer Kunst und Medientechnologie (ZKM, Germany). Since he joined the Interaction and Entertainment Research Centre and the newly founded School of Art, Design and Media at the Nanyang Technological University.

During this session, Louis-Philippe will be sharing his research output and his thoughts in the field. 

Assistant Professor Denisa Kera and Students

National University of Singapore



Denisa Kera is Assistant Professor at the National University of Singapore and Asia Research Institute fellow.  In her present research she brings together Science Technology Society (STS) studies and Interactive Media Design around issues of open science and open source hardware. She uses design methodologies and prototypes based on open hardware as tools for deliberation and public participation in science.   She studies science community labs and alternative R & D places (Hackerspaces, FabLabs) around the world, especially (Do It Yourself) DIYbio movements and various citizen science projects, which create opportunities to support research in the Global South.  She has extensive experience as a curator of exhibitions and projects related to art, technology and science, and previous career in internet start-ups and journalism.

In her Digital Fiction class, students connect folklore, rituals, indigenous knowledge and traditional objects with Open Source Hardware to explore the connections between media archaeology and design fiction. With their prototypes, they  explore both alternative futures and forgotten pasts, and probe the relations between old, traditional artisan techniques and Arduino based, Open Hardware platforms.  The forgotten objects are enhanced with sensors and electronic parts to envision original scenarios and stories for their future use.  These hybrid prototypes not only revive and bring the past into the future, but also explore the terrain between usability,  forgotten and new experiences and pure speculation. The “magic qualities” of sensing and computing are explored through mischievous, serious and dark interventions, which are inspired also by Critical Design and Design Noir approaches.

Together with her students from her Digital Fiction class, Denisa will be presenting some of our preliminary results  and prototypes to discuss the question on how to evaluate such interventions, which explore the relations between traditional artisan techniques and interactive media design. How such traditional and indigenous artefacts affect OSHW? Should we views custom made open source hardware (OSHW) as a form of contemporary (post-digital) craft? How animism and indigenous beliefs support various design practices, especially the ones inspired by Actor Network Theory and materialist ontology.


Assistant Professor Vladimir Todorovic and Students

NTU School of Art, Design and Media



As part of the course, DM 2011 Issues in Interactive Media Practice, the desert environment in Arizona has become a playground for students from different disciplines to test their innovative solution for the future living scenarios. This environment will serve as a starting point to think about possible garments, fashion accessories, mobile kitchen utilities, observing earth DIY sensing equipment, that students could develop and that way speculate about the future. By analyzing and studying Asian cultural influences and relationships to US Southwestern art, design and architectural practices, students conceptualised, designed, prototyped, installed and tested new media art projects at various locations in Arizona. These locations include the Taliesin School of Architecture, Arcosanti, Antelope Canyon and the Grand Canyon. In this colloquy, Vladimir and his students will be sharing their projects and experiences from the study trip.


2.00pm Welcome
2.05pm Opening by ADM Chair, Professor Vibeke Sorensen
2.15pm Assistant Professor Vladimir Todorovic and Students
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
3.15pm Associate Professor Louis-Philippe Demers
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
3.45pm Break
4.00pm Mr. Dinu Bodiciu
Lasalle College of the Arts, Singapore
4.30pm Assistant Professor Denisa Kesa and Students
National University of Singapore, Singapore
5.00pm Mr. Stefan Ivanov
Stepsss, Smart Wearables Ltd., Bulgaria
5.30pm Panel Discussion, facilitated by Visiting Assistant Professor Galina Mihaleva
6.30pm Ms. Alexandra Murray-Leslie
Chicks of Speed, Australia
7.00pm End