Robots and the Human Hand: From Automation to Improvisation in Digital Fabrication

The North-West Ceramics Foundation is pleased to start 2024 with our next Speakers Series panel Sunday, January 28, 2024, at 1pm, featuring Bryan Cera and Tom Lauerman in conversation with Jen Woodin. The presentation is free and open to all. It will take place over Zoom, and registration is required. Please see here or below for information about how to register.

Bryan Cera, Tom Lauerman, and Jennifer Woodin

Bryan Cera and Tom Lauerman in conversation with Board member and moderator Jennifer Woodin will present their work in a panel discussion Robots and the Human Hand: from Automation to Improvisation in Digital Fabrication. The panel will discuss work, research explorations, and experiences utilizing ever-evolving emerging technologies as a methodology in the practice of working with clay. The artists will explore a range of topics including 3D printing, animation, hand-building with robots, DIY culture, and emerging communities of social exchange.

CERA-1″: Custom clay 3D printer designed and built by Bryan Cera

Bryan Cera is an artist, designer and maker from Milwaukee, Wisconsin  currently serving as Assistant Professor of Object Making and Emergent Technologies at the Alberta University of the Arts (AUArts) in Calgary, AB. Bryan holds a Bachelor degree in Interdisciplinary Arts, a Master of Arts and Master of Fine Arts in Art and Technology from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. His practice explores the intimate and often dysfunctional relationships between humans and their technologies and investigates information and data’s reciprocal relationships to matter and ideas. His studio explorations traverse interactive video installation, wearable electronics, kinetics and robotics, and experimental platforms for digital fabrication. He has shown work across the US, including exhibitions in California, Maine, Nevada, Philadelphia, Utah and Wisconsin, and he has contributed to international exhibitions in Australia, Canada, China, Great Britain and Switzerland. In 2016 he founded the Thing Tank – a digital fabrication laboratory dedicated to exploring the integration of emerging technologies into more “traditional” craft practices.

Tom Lauerman, A collection of glazed ceramic objects created via 3D printing and hand building.

Tom Lauerman earned his BFA from SMU Meadows School of Art in Dallas, TX, and his MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, MI. He is currently an Associate Professor, MFA Graduate Coordinator, and Sculpture Area Head at Penn State University College of Arts and Architecture in University Park, PA. Working within the overlap of sculpture, craft, coding and design, he explores the emotional capacities of constructed space as a visual, tactile, and visceral experience. His work is populated with references to archetypal forms from the built environment, including arches, pilotis, stairs, domes, and colonnades.
Often his works are small in size while suggesting a monumental scale. He has designed and built a number of custom 3D clay printers, which he uses extensively in his studio, and he has created hybrid digital/physical works via claymation, illustration, and interactive 3D models. Tom has exhibited his work widely in Berlin, Detroit, Philadelphia, Chicago, and elsewhere.

Jennifer Woodin is an artist, educator, meditation mentor and bee-enthusiast whose creative process weaves together the craft of compassion, transformative social practices, ceramic object making, relationship building and contemplative technologies. Woodin develops much of her art at residencies including the European Ceramic Work Center (EKWC) in Oisterwijk, Netherlands, the National Workshops of Art and Crafts in Copenhagen, Denmark, the Archie Bray Foundation, and Haystack School of Crafts. She has exhibited her work throughout the US, Denmark, Canada, Sweden, Taiwan, Norway and elsewhere. She currently lives in Vancouver, teaches at Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Surrey BC, and serves on the boards of the Native Bee Society of BC and the NWCF.

The panel presentation will take place on Sunday, January 28, at 1PM PST on Zoom. We look forward to your attendance, but registration is required. To register, please see here.

For more on our speakers, please see:
Bryan Cera
Tom Lauerman