Hackaday Prize Entry: Invisible


[Kate Reed] found a quote by a homeless that said “No one sees us”, which led her to exploring what it actually means to be invisible — and if we actually choose to be invisible by hiding away our emotions, sexual preference, race or income. She realized that too often, we choose to only see what we want to see, rendering all the rest invisible by looking away. Her public art campaign and Hackaday Prize entry “Invisible” aims to increase social awareness and strengthening the community by making hidden thoughts, feelings and needs visible.

Inspired by the artist [Jin Young Yu], [Kate] started experimenting with transparent, hollow sculptures. She figured that people could write their secrets on a piece of paper and drop it into the sculpture through a slot. The more of these invisibilities are collected inside the sculpture, the more visible it becomes.

In the planning of her work, [Kate] found that a frame assembly from laser cut acrylic would be the best option to define the silhouette of her manikins. A layer of plastic wrap would become the transparent skin. After getting the 3D model for the structure just right in Rhino 3D, [Kate] went on by adding engraved ornamentation and the call “What makes you feel invisible?” to the chest plate. A slot beneath the text was added to fill the sculpture. [Kate] verified her design choices on a cardboard model, and eventually, all the pieces were cut from clear acrylic, assembled and wrapped. These sculptures are now being placed in different places over the world, collecting insights into a secret, invisible world.

[Kate] has become quite a star over at hackaday.io. In 2015, she joined the Hackaday Prize and made it to the semifinals with her project Hand Drive, an open-source 3D printable device that allows any wheelchair to be powered in a rowing motion. Enjoy the video of her speaking at the Hackaday SuperConference on “The Creative Process In Action”:


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