Public Receptors

January 11, 2010
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Urban body architecture

“Public Receptors: Beneath the Skin” is a textile installation by Gabi Schillig, a conceptual artist and architect in Berlin. Schillig´s wearable spatial structures mediate between private users and public spaces, provoking new relationships between bodies, clothing, and the built environment. Redefining the garment as tactile architecture, Schillig developed a set of textile structures she calls “public receptors” and conducted a series site-specific experiments for their implementation in New York City. Made from felt, latex, and a variety of fastening devices, the structures are designed for attachment to specific building surfaces and street conditions, to be improvised and appropriated for clothing, furniture, habitat, or other uses.

Schillig explores the potential for soft geometries and surfaces of textiles, conventionally associated with individual bodies and human scale, to generate alternative arrangements of social space and modes of interaction in the urban fabric. For Schillig, multiple users, desires, and urban contexts are necessary to materialize her work. Designed to be interconnected and shared, her second skins evolve an architecture built upon the creativity of its participants.

Upon contact, Public Receptors transform in geometry, texture, and color from two-dimensional and often camouflaged elements in the city to three-dimensional interfaces that sensitize and reassociate urban bodies to environments at multiple scales. Public Receptors: Beneath the Skin was developed with the support of a 2008-2009 Van Alen Institute New York Prize Fellowship and Johanna Daimer Filze e.K. – Deeply Felt / Filze aller Art, Munich.

Contact: Gabi Schillig, Berlin, Germany.

For more information, see Transmaterial 3: A Catalog of Materials that Redefine our Physical Environment

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