White Cart Loom (2016): PC Game system, HD 65” display in wooden loom structure, custom built software in Blender Game Engine and sound bar.
White Cart Loom has been produced in response to scientific research looking to interpret and understand data encoded in the biological process of shell formation in the now endangered freshwater pearl mussel. The project connects biodiversity with human creativity and its first expression through programming, with textile designers use of the first programmable machine; the Jacquard loom. In Paisley Scotland, this process was used exploring the creative possibilities of the world renowned paisley pattern. Rapid industrialisation of textile production contributed to habitat destruction and freshwater pearl mussels are now locally extinct.
Opening a space to reflect on the interaction between industrial processes and sustainability in a world populated by 7.4 billion humans – each with a strong sense of unique identity – boredomresearch are integrating biology and computation to create a unique pearlescent paisley form for every human alive on earth. In doing so they have re-imagined the paisley pattern as if it had grown in the shell of a freshwater pearl mussel, reconnecting the design with its bio-inspired origins.
boredomresearch ask: “Can a digital, data rich, world advance the value of the individual both in terms of human culture and the last surviving representative of an endangered species.”
This project was commissioned by the University of the West of Scotland and supported by New Media Scotland, Renfrewshire Council, Paisley 2021 and Bournemouth University.