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ITAB: International TECHstyle Art Biennial

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In 2010, the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles will launch a new signature event—the International TECHstyle Art Biennial (ITAB). ITAB is a juried exhibition of work by artists mining the expressive potential of fiber media and engaging new information and communication technologies in their artistic processes, as a medium of artistic expression, and/or in the content of their work. Leveraging its location in Silicon Valley, the Museum envisions ITAB serving as the premiere platform for introducing the emerging work of artists exploring the intersection of fibers and technology to the global community that assembles—virtually and non-virtually--on the occasion of San Jose ’s biennial ZeroOne: A Global Festival of Art on the Edge (01SJ).

As fibers, textiles, and the language of textile patterning have achieved wide currency in contemporary art practice—often as a means of evoking a collective haptic experience that is both historical and contemporary--ITAB seeks to expose and explore the tensions between and among works by artists using fiber media whose centers of gravity are located in diverse artistic disciplines. We welcome submissions from artists in the fields of architecture, fashion, fiber art, installation art, interior design, new media, painting, sculpture, etc. Artwork demonstrating a keen understanding and mastery of the aesthetic, structural/technical, and semiotic possibilities of fiber and of digital, computerized, or networked information and communication technologies--will become the hallmark of the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles' International TECHstyle Art Biennial.

ITAB 2010 will be on view from August 17 to October 31, 2010 to coincide with the 3rd 01SJ Biennial, September 16-19, 2010.


Carole Collet

Collet serves as Course Director of MA Textile Futures at Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design and was co-developer of Nobel Textiles, a two-year collaboration between Central Saint Martins and the Medical Research Council aimed at exploring the interface between science and design. Nobel Textiles paired five Nobel Prize winning scientists with five textile designers to test the premise that "[d]esigners fundamentally shape the way we live, while science pervades the very fabric of our lives." Collet collaborated with John Sulston, who received a Nobel Prize in 2002 for identifying the first mutation in a gene that participates in the deliberate suicide of unwanted cells in multi-cellular animals. Their conversations resulted in Collet creating "suicidal textiles," a collection of sustainable garden textiles and furniture that reflected the process of programmed cell death.

Steve Dietz

Dietz was the Founding Director of the biennial 01SJ Global Festival of Art on the Edge in 2006 and is currently Artistic Director of its producing organization, ZERO1: the Art and Technology Network. He is the former Curator of New Media at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis , Minnesota , where he founded the New Media Initiatives department in 1996, the online art Gallery 9 and digital art study collection. Dietz has organized and curated numerous new media art exhibitions. He speaks and writes extensively about new media, and his interviews and writings have appeared in Parkett, Artforum, Flash Art, Design Quarterly, Spectra, Salmagundi, Afterimage, Art in America, Museum News, BlackFlash, Public Art Review, Else/Where and Intelligent Agent. He has taught about curating and digital art at California College of the Arts, Carleton College , the University of Minnesota , and the Minneapolis College of Art and Design.

Dr. Narinder Kapany

Professor Emeritus at University of California , Santa Cruz , Dr. Kapany is acknowledged by many to be the father of fiber-optics. He has over one hundred patents related to his work in fiber-optic communications, lasers, biomedical instrumentation, solar energy and pollution monitoring. An academic and entrepreneur, Kapany has taught at the University of California, Berkeley and UC Santa Cruz, and for seven years directed the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurial Development at UCSC. In 1960, he founded Optics Technology Inc. and was Chairman of the Board, President, and Director of Research for twelve years. In 1967 the company went public with numerous corporate acquisitions and joint-ventures in the United States and abroad. In 1973, Kapany founded Kaptron Inc. and was President and CEO until 1990 when he sold the company to AMP Incorporated. A major collector of Sikh art, Kapany is also an artist. He has created forty "dynoptic" sculptures which were first displayed in a one-man show at the Exploratorium of the Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco in 1972.

Matilda McQuaid

McQuaid is Deputy Curatorial Director and head of the Textiles Department at Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum in New York City . Among the many exhibits she has curated, Extreme Textiles: Designing for High Performance (2005) was the first major museum exhibit to investigate innovation in technical textiles. The exhibit showcased textile products that have revolutionized the fields of aerospace, apparel, architecture, the environment, medicine and transportation. Previously Associate Curator in the Department of Architecture and Design at the Museum of Modern Art , she curated the groundbreaking Visions and Utopias: Architectural Drawings from the Museum of Modern Art (2003). Surveying early modern masters such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Le Corbusier, and Mies van der Rohe, as well as contemporary practitioners like Frank O. Gehry, Zaha Hadid, Rem Koolhaas, and Daniel Libeskind, this show explored how the digital revolution has transformed the practice of architecture and of architectural drawing as a form of artistic expression.


The ITAB is organized by the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles with the advice and counsel of the ITAB Advisory Board, comprised of renowned Bay Area fiber arts and educators.

ITAB 2010 Advisory Board Members

Lia Cook is an internationally known fiber artist who has been recently working with digitial jacquard. She is currently Professor of Art at California College of the Arts and Chair of the Textile Department. She works in a variety of media; usually combining weaving and painting, photography and digital technology. Her recent work explores the sensuality of fabric and the human response of touch. Her work is in major collections worldwide.

Vic De La Rosa is an artist and designer who explores the convergence and boundaries of technology, art, and design in the realm of textiles. He spent 15 successful years as an apparel and product designer before concentrating on fine arts work and pursuing a path to the professorate. He is on the art faculty at San Francisco State University after teaching on the east coast at the Rhode Island School of Design, Philadelphia University and University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth.

Submission deadlineMARCH 1, 2010
Notification APRIL 30, 2010
Accepted work dueJULY 23, 2010
Opening reception AUGUST 22, 2010
Exhibition closes AUGUST 17, 2010 –
OCTOBER 31, 2010