Liza Stark is a designer, educator, and organizer whose work investigates the intersection of craft, play, and technology. Some call it electronic textiles or eTextiles. Other people use words like soft circuits, wicked fabrics, electronic craft, or wearable technology. She creates computationally-enhanced craft objects that explore the interplay of ritual and narrative, tools and learning, accessibility and gender. Her recent work includes feminist revisionist history zines, talking quilts, and organizing a residency program. She has designed games at the pioneering middle school Quest to Learn and created playful learning experiences around the country with the Institute of Play, littleBits, Girls Who Code, and others. She recently completed fellowships at the Pratt Institute’s Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator and the Journalism + Design program at Eugene Lang College. She graduated from the MFA Design and Technology program at Parsons The New School for Design where she has taught for seven years. Her work has been shown at the International Symposium on Wearable Computers, The Wassaic Project, NYCxDESIGN Week, Moulins Paillard, Maker Faire, Open Hardware Summit, CIANT, the Tangible, Embedded, and Embodied Interaction Conference, and more.
She takes play very seriously, loves her sewing machine and soldering iron equally, and considers open knowledge sharing as important as breathing. #WOOLPUNK
Soft interface design and the creation of open toolkits to facilitate their development.
Personal, ethical, and privacy implications of wearable technology and eTextile development.
Recrafting rituals, narratives, and traditions through computationally-enhanced objects.
Electronic craft as a tool and pathway to learning programming.
Sustainable eTextiles (considering material awareness, labor implications, and interventions in current consumer behaviors).
TALKS + PANELS
Unraveling eTextiles: Reveling in Storytelling, Sustainability, and Sharing, Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator, Pratt Institute, 2018
Keynote Speaker, Virginia Children’s Engineering Conference, Roanoke, VA, 2018
Computational Craft 101, GOALS for Girls, Intrepid Museum, New York, 2017
Wicked Fabrics Panel: Sustainability (Moderator), eTextile Summer Camp Exhibition, Ponce sur le Loir, France, 2017
Social eTextiles Panel (Moderator), eTextile Summer Fest, Ponce sur le Loir, France, 2017
How to Turn a Teacher into a Game Designer, Part of Teaching with Games 3: Another Six Exercises in Play, Game Developers Conference, San Francisco, CA. 2016
TeacherQuest Talks: Learning Happens By Doing, Educator Innovator, New York, NY, 2015
Cooking with Hardware at NICAR, National Institute for Computer Assisted Reporting Conference, Baltimore, MD, 2014
Scrapyard Challenge Jr., A Low-Cost, Reduced Feature-Set Platform Utilizing Open Hardware for Experimenting with Electricity and Materials Through Creating Sound (with Katherine Moriwaki, Jonah Brucker-Cohen, Louisa Campbell, Joseph Saavedra), Open Hardware Summit, New York, NY, 2012
EXHIBITIONS + SHOWS
The Tell Tale Quilt, Laboratory, Spokane, WA, 2018
Sonic Quilt | Remember Me, The Wassaic Project, Wassaic, NY, 2018
Data Vows, International Symposium on Wearable Computers Design Exhibition, Maui, HI, 2017
Sonic Quilt | Fringes, eTextile Summercamp Exhibition, Ponce sur le Loir, France, 2017
WOOL PUNK, GroupHug Exhibition at NYCxDESIGN, New York, NY, 2017
Data Vows, eTextile Summercamp Exhibition, Ponce sur le Loir, France, 2016
POV Hand Fan, eTextile Summercamp Exhibition, Ponce sur le Loir, France, 2015
Opening Ed through Computational Craft: Designing Open Hardware for Educators with BOXES, Open Hardware Summit, Eyebeam, New York, NY, 2012
BOXES: Building Open eXpandable Electronic Systems, World Maker Faire, New York, NY, 2012
BOXES: Building Open eXpandable Electronic Systems, MFA Design + Technology Thesis Show, Parsons The New School For Design, New York, NY, 2012
Liza Stark. 2017. Data Vows: Reimagining Ritual through eTextile Practice. In Proceedings of the 2017 ACM International Symposium on Wearable Computers (ISWC ‘17). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 244-248.
Moriwaki, K., Brucker-Cohen, J., Saavedra, J., Stark, L., Taylor, L., “Scrapyard Challenge Jr., Adapting an Art and Design Workshop to Support STEM to STEAM learning experiences” in proceedings of ISEC 2012: 2nd IEEE Integrated Stem Education Conference, Ewing, NJ, March 9, 2012.
Liza Stark. 2012. SnapToTrace: a new e-textile interface and component kit for learning computation. In Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Tangible, Embedded and Embodied Interaction (TEI ‘12), Stephen N. Spencer (Ed.). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 399-400.
WORKSHOPS + EVENTS
Team Leader, Tek Tiles Program, BF+DA, New York, NY, 2018
eTextile Spring Break, Lead Organizer, The Wassaic Project, Wassaic, NY, 2018
Systems + Design Thinking Training for Journalism + Design Faculty at The New School, Institute of Play, New York, NY, 2017
Crafting Resistance Workshop Series, Parsons The New School for Design, New York, NY, 2017
Coding with littleBits, Google Youth IO, Palo Atlo, CA, 2017
Artist’s Talk & ATtiny Workshop, Textile Bootcamp, Fab Lab Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain, 2017
BitCraft: littleBits + Minecraft, Mojang HQ, Stockholm, Sweden, 2016
Level Up Arduino, eTextile Summer Camp, Ponce sur le Loire, France, 2016
Family Maker Day Workshop, WNYC’s Greene Space, New York, NY, 2015
TeacherQuest Collab, Institute of Play, New York, NY, 2015
STEMQuest, Institute of Play, New York, NY, 2014
Introduction to Soft Circuits, ITP EdCamp, NYU, New York, NY, 2014
TeacherQuest, Institute of Play, New York, NY, 2013-2014
Making Data-Driven Objects, Hack/Hackers NYC, The New School, New York, NY, 2014
gadgITERATION Workshop Series, Parsons The New School For Design, 2012
Designer in Residence, Journalism+Design Program, The New School, 2018
Eyeo Artist Fellow, Eyeo Festival, June 2018
Residency, The Laboratory, May 2018
eTextile Spring Break, The Wassaic Project, Wassaic, NY, 2018
t.Lab Fellow, Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator, Pratt Institute, NY, 2017-2018
eTextile Summer Camp, Ponce sur le Loire, France, 2015-2017