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HOME: About the Tinker Factory

Tinker Blog

he Tinker Factory: a lab for research design, creativity and interdisciplinary technology created by Renate Ferro, Visiting Professor at Cornell University Department of Art. in the areas of new media and emerging technology. Cornell University's Tinker Factory is a space that exists "outside" ofregular university programs and curriculum.  The research lab,housed in Tjaden Room 420 an extension of Ferro's artistic studio and practice, nurtures interactive, technological, and artistic research. by inviting  undergraduate and graduate students as well as university faculty from all of the University's multi-disciplinary colleges to not only investigate technical possibilities but to engage in artistic collaborations as well as critical and historical implications for ongoing research projects. Visiting lectures and artists will also be guests of space.

To Tinker:  “Tinkering is what happens when you try something you don't quite know how to do, guided by whim, imagination, and curiosity. When you tinker, there are no instructions — but there are also no failures, no right or wrong ways of doing things. It's about figuring out how things work and reworking them. Tinkering is, at its most basic, a process that marries play with inquiry.”                                       __    www.exploratorium.edu/tinkering

The Factory: Andy Warhol’s studio in the 1960’s was referred to as “the factory.”  The space was a platform for both practical work and conceptual innovation.  Ground breaking creative energy was characteristic of the factory, which became a meeting place for artists, musicians, actors, and many others.  It was an open, collaborative meeting place.

Academic and creative collaborative work between arts, humanities, and computing disciplines is often hampered by the placement of our insulated departments and colleges, a lack of equipment and technological resources, information, and knowledge.  Yet the current impetus of international collaborations converging fine arts, music and sound, performance and dance, programming and computing, and finally art history, criticism, and politics is moving creative worlds internationally into cross pollinating disciplines to forge innovative, ground breaking initiatives resulting in a new understanding of what art and culture and technology constitute.

Through research and networking students, faculty and guest artists will encourage collaboration, technical expertise, and knowledge so that new directions in forging the arts with technology may be realized.


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