Light – thin as paper. The new generation of light.
I am going to join a workshop about OLED, in London. The workshop is part of the OLED Lighting Design Summit. This years focus is on applications, using the unique properties of OLED to open new market areas, securing the future expansion of the Lighting industry and this exciting technology.
What is an OLED?
It is an organic light emitting diode (OLED) in which the emissive electroluminescent layer is a film of organic compounds which emit light in response to an electric current. This layer of organic semiconductor material is situated between two electrodes. Generally, at least one of these electrodes is transparent. (Source: wikipedia.)
It is a very thin – paperalike material. It can even be folded. Its properties: thin, transparent, foldable, printable (liquid substanse), homogenous output, unusual appearance, low heat emission and high degree of controllability. That is what I found on the web.
There are several aspect that come with OLED light that pose an interest to a textiledesigner / artist. Its properties makes it possible to include in the very process of making / designing.
OLED and its creative possibilties.
My interest in that material is that I would like to experiment with the weaving technique. To find a way to embedd the material within the textile structure. In its tectonic.
Today´s materialtechnology enables textiles, and the making of textiles, to be more than just that. E-textiles, also known as electronic textiles or smart textiles, are fabrics that enable computing, digital components, and electronics to be embedded in them. Maybe textiles can contribute to create a new form of architecture? The term architextiles is a fusion between architecture and textiles, using textiles tectonic and architectures application. New materials (f ex carbonfiber ) could create a new understanding of architecture, a new shape of walls – and spaces.
OLED is a material that can certainly interact with its surrounding, viewer or architecture. It can lighten up the space. It can be a lightsource, a lamp. Embedded light. Something that could be interesting in terms of lightning, to create a lightsource that is not pointy – like light sources we have today. Pointy light from above. Embedding it into the architecture can deliver a light from the side or from below. Light intensity will be different too, a soft bright (day?) light?
OLED can be, in combination with printing – a decorative element: as an electrolumiscence paper. Maybe the lightemitting substance can be applied on fiber? And later woven and transformed into a 3 dimensional object?
The weaving technique poses for me a fine way to create. To create surfaces that can be transformed through different transformatioal processes into spatial shapes. To create architextiles.
OLED and the aspect of ecology
OLED have a very low energy consumption, and in combination to intelligent electronics they can contribute to sustainability.
OLED used in the arts
The London based design studio made an interactive OLED Installation called “You Fade To Light” in collaboration with Philips. They used the material Lumiblade OLED´s to create a wall of light which reacts to people´s movement. Watch a presentation of the work here. It shows the wall of light in combination with 2 contemporary dancers. “You Fade To Light”.
Another work that explores the artistic possibilities of small OLED displays is the design work by Jason Bruges called Mimosa. Using Philips Lumiblade , networked together in a series of flowerlike modules that open and close in the presence of visitors, like the rapid moving plant – Mimosa. The work was shown at the Milan furniture fair in 2010.
I am looking forward to join the hands on workshop on OLED by E2M Technology. Hoping to learn about OLED, its aspect of ecology and especially how to make an OLED, to get an overview of the material science – how is a OLED made. This is important to understand how to use it in creative products. To twist its appearance, and find ways of embedding it into the weaving / textile. And I am looking forward to be part of the Designer input panel – to discuss the possibilities for OLED. Part of that panel will be Arfon Davies, Associate Director, ARUP, Mark Ridler, Lighting Director, BDP, Steve Philips, Lead Product Designer, ARUP and myself. Visit homepage of ARUP. Visit homepage of BDP .
My interest at the conference will be, besides to look closer on the actual creation of an OLED, where will OLED position itstelf in the sustainable debate?
a – I would like to hear more about the substance. phosphor – how poisonouse (are there excisting certificates?)
b – What about the connection to solar cells. Theme here: energy harvesting, zero carbon houses.
c – What about the relation price – production.
d – How portable / wearable is the technology of OLED?
e – What about the humanitary background, maybe we should check what this technology can do – with case studies – for low developed countries. Like f ex the portable light project by KVA : Kennedy & Violich Architecture. They developed a non profit research project with the aim to deliver renewable power and light to the developing world. it is a portable light unit. simple, versatile, with flexible photovoltaics (solar).
I think the technology of OLED came a long way – but yet the focus lays on objects / design products. Next step could be to open it up for new creative hybrids, for example architextiles.