We’re working with STEAMhouse on a series of co-produced events in Birmingham, that will run throughout 2019. Through these events we hope to support the growing community of makers at STEAMhouse, and provide an opportunity for a diverse group of designers, craftspeople, artists and technologists to learn, be inspired, and get to know each other.Continue reading “STEAMhouse, Birmingham, 2019”
We are very much looking forward to our next gathering in Edinburgh, which will be a special edition of Maker Assembly, developed in collaboration with the British Council.
More than ever before, we will be expanding Maker Assembly’s reach to an international audience. We have invited makers, thinkers and doers from around the world, including representatives from the UK, South Africa, China, Nigeria, Turkey, Mexico and Ukraine, to participate in the day’s discussions and to share their knowledge, skills and experiences. In addition to the day’s sessions and activities, we will have the opportunity to hear more about the British Council’s Maker Library Network and Hello Shenzhen programmes.
09.30 – Arrival and registration
10.00 – Welcome address by Liz Corbin (Institute of Making)
10.15 – Session one: Networks
Fi Scott (Make Works)
Mara Balestrini (The Bristol Approach)
Maker Library Network Legacy
Chaired by Andrew Sleigh (Lighthouse)
11.30 – Coffee break
13.30 – Lunch and chats
Lunchtime Activity: The Incomplete and Crowdsourced History of UK Maker Culture.
16.15 – Coffee break
17.30 – Drinks reception
18.30 – Traditional Scottish ceilidh (closing at 21.00)
We want everyone who attends our event to enjoy the day and feel able to express their views. As such, we expect all attendees to follow The Ada Initiative Code of Conduct.
Follow us on twitter – @MakerAssemblyUK – and join the conversation by using #MakerAssembly.
GRAS, The Custom House, 65-67 Commercial Street, Leith,
Edinburgh EH6 6LH
As we have limited capacity, we ask for a £10 booking deposit that will be refunded on the day. Your ticket also includes a communal lunch and refreshments throughout the day.
About the British Council
The British Council is the United Kingdom’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We create friendly knowledge and understanding between the people of the UK and other countries. We do this by making a positive contribution to the UK and the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust.
We work with over 100 countries across the world in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Each year we reach over 20 million people face-to-face and more than 500 million people online, via broadcasts and publications. Founded in 1934, we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body.
Arts is a cornerstone of the British Council’s mission to create a friendly knowledge and understanding between the people of the UK and the wider world. We find new ways of connecting with and understanding each other through the arts, to develop stronger creative sectors around the world that are better connected with the UK.
Maker Assembly Edinburgh is supported by:
Photos by Dan Sumption and Keziah Suskin
We are very much looking forward to our next gathering in Manchester, in conjunction with the Crafts Council’s Make:Shift innovation conference.
Our Manchester event will explore international maker cultures and what the UK can learn from them; the relationship between making and manufacturing in the UK and the role of makerspaces within the sector, as well as Making and Humanitarian Relief, discussing the role making can play within responses to humanitarian challenges. We have some great speakers joining us, so watch this space for updates.
With Maker Assembly, we aim to bring people together to have a critical conversation about the cultures of making* – its meaning, politics, history and future. We encourage everyone to participate by combining short talks with contributions from the attendees. Maker Assembly is peer-to-peer, informal and conversational.
Session 1 – Learning from International Making Cultures
David Li – founder of Shenzhen Open Innovation Lab, Shenzhen, China
Session 2 – Making and Humanitarian Relief
Session 3 – Making and Manufacturing Session
Paul Sohi – Product designer for Autodesk
Alon Meron – Tutor in Design Products, Royal College of Art
Thanks to support from the Comino Foundation, ticket prices are heavily subsidised. Your ticket also includes a communal lunch and refreshments during the day.
The current schedule, subject to change is:
|9:30||Arrival and registration|
|10:00||Welcome address by Maker Assembly co-organisers Liz Corbin and Marc Barto|
|10:10||Welcome to MadLab by Asa Calow and Rachael Turner|
|10:15||Session 1 - Learning from International Making Cultures:
What can we in the UK learn from international making cultures? The session will hear from representatives of making cultures in Paris, Cape Town and Shenzhen, and explore the uniqueness of each culture as well as any common challenges and ambitions the varying perspectives might share.
|12:00||Session 2 - Making and Humanitarian Relief:
How can we mobilise makers in our community to respond to humanitarian challenges? How can the use of digital platforms enable makers to collectively work on solutions? How can we make sure that what we design is needed and can be adapted by users locally?
|13:15||Lunch & chats
Lunchtime Activity: The Incomplete and Crowdsourced History of UK Maker Culture
|14:45||Session 3 - Making and Manufacturing:
What is the relationship between making and manufacturing in the UK? This session will explore manufacturing at all levels, from informal, collaborative, regional networked production, to indie, (re)distributed manufacturing, national networks, and how domestic activity relates with global supply chains.
|16:15||Keynote: Laura Billings Designed to Scale|
|16:45||Crowdsourced closing remarks|
|17:00||To the pub|
We’ll be holding Maker Assembly in Manchester Digital Laboratory (MadLab), a grassroots innovation organisation based in Manchester UK focusing on science and technology, arts and culture.
*What do we mean by “making”?
We’re talking about people who craft, design, manufacture, tinker with, engineer, fabricate, and repair physical things. Art, craft, electronics, textiles, products, robots. Hi-tech and low-tech, amateur and professional, young and old, with digital tools or by hand. Historical perspectives, what’s happening here and now, and how things might change in the future. We aim to be diverse and inclusive. If what you make, or how you see yourself, is a little bit on the fringes, you’re doubly welcome.
Maker Assembly is coming to Sheffield this August. We bring people together to have a critical conversation about the cultures of making 1 – its meaning, politics, history and future. We encourage everyone to participate by combining short talks with contributions from the attendees. Maker Assembly is peer-to-peer, informal and conversational.
Update – September 2016: Thanks to everyone who came along; it was a great event, and we enjoyed meeting and talking with so many interesting makers. You can see some pictures from the day, kindly taken by Dan Sumption, over on Flickr.
Akiko Kobayashi, architect and now facilitator of community-led building projects. She works with groups to communicate their vision and gain practical skills, and also has hands-on construction experience, most recently as part of the Tiree Noust Boathouse and Wikihouse v4.2 live build projects.
Annebella Pollen, author of Kindred of the Kibbo Kift, a beautiful book on the esoteric mid-war group of pacifists and woodcrafters, who set out to create a revolutionary movement through craft, propaganda, ritual and outdoor living.
Clementine Blakemore, an architectural designer whose practice focuses on the relationship between design, production and place. Alongside a position as Designer in Residence at the Design Museum, and teaching at the AA School of Architecture, she is currently working on a range of small-scale projects in the UK.
Heather Corcoran, a curator and cultural producer with a specialism in art, design and technology. She leads outreach for Kickstarter in the UK and Europe, with a focus on the design & technology communities. Previously, she was Executive Director of Rhizome, the influential digital art nonprofit based at the New Museum, New York.
Huw Wahl, who recently made a film about Action Space, the radical artists’ group that operated in London and Sheffield in the 1960s and ’70s, and set out to champion the role of creative experience in the transformation of society, becoming famous for their giant inflatable structures.
Jon Flint, a designer at Anglo-Indian design practice, Superflux. He has worked on a variety of projects around drones, air quality and Graphene. He has an interest in the public perception of new technologies, trying to understand perspectives through hands-on workshops or inventive methods.
Liam Healy, from the collaborative art and design group Design unlikely futures, which emerged from Goldsmiths via the Calais ‘Jungle’ while the members worked as volunteer builders in the camp. Their aim is to collaboratively design alternative futures for capturing the social, political and physical fabric of the site, and to document the camp as a space, a community, and a population locked in transit.
Sarah Corbett, the founder of Craftivist Collective, a global social enterprise using craft a tool for slow, gentle & intriguing activism.
Tom Tobia, developer of products, spaces and businesses that encourage people to make things, not least Makerversity, the makers’ coworking incubator.
The current schedule, subject to change is:
|09.30||Arrival, registration, refreshments|
|10.00||Session 1 – Activism: From historical maker movements to the present day, how has craft and making been used as a tool to promote change?|
|12.00||Lunch and lunchtime workshop|
|13.30||Session 2 – Consequence: What can we do to make an impact in the world beyond ourselves as makers? How can making operate in the worlds of art, business and design?|
|16.00||Session 3 – Home: How can people use making on the largest scale to take control of their communities? How does building together change our relationships to each other?|
|17.30||Finish sessions, and retreat to the Roco bar and roof terrace for those who want to continue the conversation|
We’ll be holding Maker Assembly in the beautiful new Roco Creative Co-op, with its friendly event space, well-stocked bar, deleicious food and always-sunny roof terrace. This event coincides with the launch of their new maker space, providing the kit and tools for designers and makers to prototype and test their ideas and micro-manufacture their products.
Thanks to support from Comino Foundation, ticket prices are heavily subsidised. Your ticket also includes a communal lunch and refreshments during the day.
Footnote: What do we mean by “making”?
We’re talking about people who craft, design, manufacture, tinker with, engineer, fabricate, and repair physical things. Art, craft, electronics, textiles, products, robots. Hi-tech and low-tech, amateur and professional, young and old, with digital tools or by hand. Historical perspectives, what’s happening here and now, and how things might change in the future. We aim to be diverse and inclusive. If what you make, or how you see yourself, is a little bit on the fringes, you’re doubly welcome. (←Back)
This event is still in the planning, but if you’re based in the area and are interested in getting involved, come along to our meetup on 20th April. Full details and registration here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/maker-assembly-sheffield-meetup-tickets-24656816201
Update: please see the follow-up post here.
Our friends at Farset Labs in Belfast organised a Maker Assembly there on 16th March 2016. More event details at their site: https://getinvited.to/farsetlabs/makerassemblyni/
Session 1: Making & Peace Building
Kicking off Maker Assembly NI is a session about the politics and nuances of community-facing digital fabrication projects. It will look at how maker cultures are emerging at the grassroots and how local organisations are contributing to the peace-building project currently underway in Northern Ireland. It hopes to reveal how the idea of ‘critical making’ can be adjusted to suit the specificities of different contexts.
- Adam Wallace & Eamon Durey, Fab Labs NI
- John Peto, Nerve Centre
Session 2: Speculative Making: New Contexts and Futures
As the idea of digital making beds down—and practices become more visible and accessible—what new trajectories are emerging and how are speculative futures being framed? This session hopes to reveal the supports we might need to maintain a critical forecast of making and maker culture.
- Nora O’Murchu, University of Limerick
- Kat Braybrooke, University of Sussex
Session 3: Governance, Sustainability & Maker Networks
How are maker networks nurtured and sustained? And how ‘critical’ are the governance strategies of the physical spaces and networked platforms that mediate maker networks?
This session hopes to somewhat unravel the entanglements of people, places, and things, to better understand how maker culture is being facilitated.
- Javier Burón, Fab Lab Limerick & University of Limerick
- Hannah Stewart, Royal College of Art, Future Makerspaces Project
Session 4: Critics of the world, create!
Final session was a making exercise, inspired by the Sarah Kember and Joanna Zylinska’s (2012) Creative Media Manifesto and Garnet Hertz’s Critical Making zine series.
Our thanks to Andre Bolster, Pip Shea and all at Farset Labs for putting on a great event. If you’re interested in holding a Maker Assembly in your makerspace, library or other institution, please get in touch.