WELCOME TO CURIOSUM (former Sliperiet)

In April 2019, Sliperiet changed it´s name to Curiosum and merged with the science center Umevatoriet. This autumn we will take the next step. and together with our tenants move into the renewed premises of Sliperiet at Arts Campus at Umeå University.

In 2020 Curiosum will open. A new science center, to inspire young and old with science and technology. We believe curiosity can change the world.

Look out for our new website coming soon!

Satisfied workshop participants with new perspectives on bark

umbraco.MacroEngines.DynamicXml Foto: Eva J:son Lönn
2017-11-01

At the end of October, FabLab Umeå arranged a workshop series to give new perspectives on birch bark, together with Hemslöjden in Västerbotten county, a handicrafts organisation. About 20 specially invited participants - makers, handicraftors and creators - were given the opportunity to process birch bark using traditional craft techniques and new digital technologies. Emma Ewadotter, Project Manager for the Workshop Series and Process Coordinator for FabLab Umeå, is very pleased with the venture, which she believes has added value.

- There is a tension between traditional craftsmanship and modern processing methods that is a burning point on the makers scene. It is extremely important to keep an ongoing discussion about the balance between technical processing and respect and understanding of materials. The selection of birch bark as material has entailed several technical challenges for the participants. Challenges I hope and believe have stimulated the participants to think in new ways, says Emma Ewadotter.

Birch bark is a complex material in many ways.

- It can only be harvested at certain times of the year and is sensitive to improper storage and use. Thus, it is very different from the materials normally used in digital manufacturing, such as cardboard or MDF material. As one of the participants said: The birch bark tells you what it can be - or wants to be - says Emma.

Karin Lundholm, one of the teachers and inspirators in the workshop series, agrees with Emma. Karin, an internationally recognized birch bark crafts woman, sees material knowledge as the foundation for the continued existence and development of birch bark crafts:

- Birch bark is a fascinating and living material. Getting to know and acquire knowledge about the material is the basis of all birch bark crafts, whether you use traditional or new manufacturing methods.

The workshop series has not only given the participants new perspectives on birch bark. It has also led to innovative processing methods and products. Two examples of what has been explored in the workshops are compression molding of birch bark and an accessory with strong links to origami and with a form of artistic expression that is unusual within birch bark crafts. After the successful outcome of these workshops, FabLab Umeå is now planning extended collaborations with Hemslöjden in Västerbotten county.