Textile Art: ‘Those Who Affected Me’ by Malin Bobeck

Those Who Affected Me is a stunning interactive light emitting textile art installation by textile designer Malin Bobeck. Suspended in mid air and measuring over 1,5 meters tall and 2,5 meter diameter, this four-winged structure invites the audience to gently touch the textile, which then reacts by sending colourful ripples up and down the fabric.
The custom designed jacquard textile features optical fibers joined to about 500 individually programmable color LEDs, which are connected to a microcomputer. Thin, electrically conducting copper threads are woven in to create touch sensitive areas inside the fabric. The 11 meters of fabric are mounted with steel rods around a steel cylinder.
The sculpture is exhibited in an small room with tilted mirror walls, creating a distorted universe where the sculpture is multiplied in infinity.
The project started off in winter 2015 as an idea of making an interactive fabric. Textile is a very tactile material and it invites people to touch it. During the process of creating it, Malin Bobeck thought of it as a self portrait. Bobeck explains: “The people around me are affecting me all the time, both mentally, physically and emotionally. They are creating me, if it weren’t for them I would not be here today. This is a tribute to them.”
When Malin was 26 she was diagnosed with breast cancer and life took a new turn. The continuation of her work however help her keep going. “I would probably never dared to go though with this project if I didn’t went through that rough time in my life. It thought me not to listen to my fear of failure and try new things just because I don’t know how to do it,” she says.
Those Who Affected Me are exhibited at the Gothenburg Museum of Art, December 5 2015 – February 21 2016.
Malin Bobeck is 29 years old, born in Lerum, Sweden. She is educated at The Swedish School of Textiles in Borås, graduating in spring 2014. She had been awarded several grants and scholarships for her innovative textiles.
Technology and media used in this installation include:
Custom optical fibre textile, woven on jacquard loom.
Teensy 3.1 microcontroller.
WS2812 addressable RGB LED pixels.
SLS 3D-printed optical fibre connectors.
Adafruit Capacitive touch sensor
Conductive yarn
Shrinking yarn
Cotton and polyester yarn