"The Culture" series is a collaboration between media artist Afroditi Psarra and architect Dafni Papadopoulou that aims to combine electronic handicrafts with parametric design and digital fabrication on an ongoing research on wearables.

“The Culture” series is an e-textiles project inspired by the Space Operas of British science fiction writer Iain M. Banks and his eclectic imagery of The Culture - a future civilization of humans that live dependent on sophisticated machines in a world where everything is sentient. The garment can be perceived as a hybrid organism, responsive to the user's vital functions -heartbeat - through subtle movements on the sleeves that behave as an augmented animalistic skin that breaths in and out.

The garment’ s sleeves are designed in Rhino and Grasshopper and have been laser-cut on leather and then assembled by hand in complex structures. The garment’s circuit has an embedded Arduino microcontroller and lightweight actuators created using muscle wire, kapton film, copper tape and pvc strips (the updated dress version uses neoprene and copper conductive fabric as the base of the actuator incorporated in the interior of the leather structure), as well as a 3d printed earring with an embedded pulse sensor.

The project was developed during the Maker-In-Residence program at WeMake, Milan´s Makerspace and was curated by Zoe Romano.

The blouse sleeves and the dress patterns have been created with the valuable help of fashion designer Sara Saviano.

Sleeve's design process:

Grasshoper definition:

Circuit schematic:

Follow the project's documentation at:

From June to August 2016 "The Culture" Series was exhibited at DRIVE. Volkswagen Group Forum in Berlin, Germany as part of the exhibition Human Factor: Endless Prototyping, curated by Martin Honzik and organized by Ars Electronica.

From September 2016 "The Culture" Series will form part of the Elements of Art and Science exhibition at the Ars Electronica Center in Linz, Austria that will be presented during Ars Electronica 2016 festival.

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