EJ Tech – Experimental art & tech lab
EJTech is an experimental art & tech lab based in Budapest, Hungary founded by Esteban de la Torre and Judit Eszter Karpati. Working in the fields of experimental interfaces, interactive installations and hybrid art projects, these artists seek to broaden the public’s perception of the environment that surrounds them. Exploring new ways of interaction between technology, weaving art, applied science and craft together, EJTech’s aim is to constantly push boundaries and create synergy between the digital and physical world.
Their works have been exhibited in many countries including France, Italy, Poland, Estonia, The Netherlands, Belgium among others.
Esteban de la Torre is an audio-visual artist, technologist from Mexico, working across both visual and sonic media, exploring tangible interaction and new dimensions of technology. He studied animation at Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design. Esteban is addicted to altering functions of ordinary objects, hacking, coding, making live acts, audio-visual performances on the fusion of sound and image.
Judit Eszter Karpati is a textile artist and researcher in the field of e-textile from Hungary. She is studying at the Doctoral School of Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design. Her main artistic research task is focusing on the integration of interactive technologies into textile art and design, connecting the mediums together, creating cross-platform situations.
TextileArtist.org: What interests you about textiles?
EJ Tech: The possibilities the material offers, exploring and researching the production of a new product. Textiles surround us and are deeply embedded in our everyday life. We are in constant interaction with them from what we wear, to what we sleep on. The concept behind what textile is and what it stands for has not been reinvented since the ancient usage of textile. We believe that technology has increasingly become intuitive for humankind, hence we will soon literally start to wear it.
The hand crafted art of textile
Do you use classic fibers (cotton, viscose, wool…) or technical fibers?
We are very interested in the hand crafted art of textile itself and merging this with hi-tech fibers. Seeing Wool and Carbon fiber work together harmoniously is alchemy. Our artistic research is strongly based on the seamless unification of the traditional approach of textile, and the innovative approach of cutting edge technology. We enjoy working with chromatic threads, as well as conductive yarns and other components.
You have worked with Velux Blinds, using chromo panels which change color with heat. What kind of smart textiles can we imagine in the future, in particular in our homes?
While working on our Velux Blinds our main idea was that in the not too distant future everything will be “smart”. By this we mean in constant interaction with the current environment that surrounds it. Whether it be reacting to temperature in order to moderate it, sunlight in order to change the amount of light allowed through the window, or insulation reacting to sound in order to deafen it, or simply working as soft displays hiding everywhere, waiting to engage with the user. We need to prepare ourselves for a lot of things, including sharing our living spaces with others.
What else can we expect to see?
Chromosonic, which opposed to what many believe, was not conceived as a chameleon wear of some sort, but the core idea was always to create a soft display purely from textile. It is very interesting, and delightful. There are many ideas that various people have come up with, but originally, Chromosonic was for architectural spaces and related means, keeping in mind what we mentioned before about smart environments.
Other of our projects, such as OchoTonos and SoundWear, are founded on the link between sound and textile. While OchoTonos uses textile as an input signal for triggering sound and exploring the multi-sensorial connection between our different senses, SoundWear takes a textile and converts it into a working speaker, in order for sound to be emitted straight out of any textile embedded with this technology.
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