The Fabrication Research Group originates from the Department of Fine Art at the University of Worcester in 2015 to explore questions and ideas relating to practices and processes of fabrication. The group brings together artists, academics, designers, material scientists, digital theorists, engineers, architects, and craftsmen to develop questions about the nature of fabrication in an attempt to establish connections between the making of material things and the social, cultural, political, economic and environmental ecologies in which they are implicated.
To fabricate is to make something or to make something up, it concerns both the making of objects and the making of fictions, the construction of things and the narratives told about them. Processes of fabrication are central to the production of contemporary culture; artists make objects and fictions to instigate encounters; designers produce prototypes to be manufactured; architects translate proposals into structures; engineers and scientists develop new materials to address specific contexts. With the rapid development of digital technology in constructing social, political and economic networks, the emergence of new theories of materialism, and the increasing imperative placed on climate change and sustainability, the fabrication of things and the implications of processes of manufacturing have never been more contested and debated.
The group primarily engages in research through practice although welcomes all kinds of interventions. The making of things is fundamental to processes of fabrication so the group particularly engages with work that employs practice-based research methodologies and will therefore seek to stage exhibitions, residencies and performances, make objects and publications, as well as hold symposiums and talks. This site is a space for sharing and disseminating the activities of the group.
Ideas relating to fabrication are explored from disciplinary positions (architecture, engineering, design, visual art, film etc.) but the group has identified four broad perspectives that will form the focus of research activity with the intention of encouraging interdisciplinary discourse:
Practice and Process
Hand-made, Machine-made, Interfaces, Apparatuses, Repetitions, Scale
Objects and Agency
New Materialisms, Ecologies, Networks, Object-Orientated Ontologies
Narrative and Form
Subject, Site, Fiction, Figure, Ground, Multiples
Belief and Illusion
Forgery, Lying, Camouflage, Ghosts, Alchemy, Replicas, Transubstantiation
Image: seier+seier: low-cost housing, prefab bathroom pods, tegnestuen vandkunsten 2004-2008. Under Creative Commons License.