Painting with feet
November 5, 2014 2:18 PM   Subscribe

The pointe shoe in ballet is a piece of technology critical to the performance of dance. While mechanically tough, its design is simple and flexible enough for personal modification and tailoring to the individual dancer's needs. Spanish artist Lesia Trubat has taken the pointe shoe into the 21st century, sewing in LilyPad Arduino controllers and sensors and integrating their operation with iOS, allowing the dancer to turn pressure and motion into a dynamic and novel expression of this centuries-old art form.
posted by a lungful of dragon (5 comments total) 19 users marked this as a favorite
Points up a key issue with robots and wearable devices, stuff wears out. Wears out faster than the electronics. A serious dancer could go through more than two pair of shoes in a single performance. The computers can handle the data, lots of bandwidth, lots of storage, but getting that data is slow, cumbersome and poorly defined. Pretty project but how do the swirls relate to the dance? Well it's not a dance in this instance, a few short combinations. Love the idea, efforts like this seem cool but all so far are one-offs, a clever idea, sometimes a few performances but far far from being a tool or an instrument.
posted by sammyo at 2:45 PM on November 5, 2014

This is great.

Sure, it's a weird prototype one-off now, but it's not like it's going to get more cumbersome or klunky in design or execution as people work on it.
posted by rmd1023 at 3:48 PM on November 5, 2014 [2 favorites]

This is really cool! Thanks for posting!
posted by jetlagaddict at 10:57 PM on November 5, 2014 [1 favorite]

I wish I had a better sense of how the painted swirls actually corresponded to what she was doing with her feet. They really didn't seem to match up. I was expecting something more like the Fox-tracks puck, I guess.
posted by jacquilynne at 5:39 AM on November 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

Dancers can interpret their own movements and correct them or compare them with the movements of other dancers, as graphs created with motion may be the same or different depending on the type of movements executed and the correction of the steps and body position.

Okay, I get what the technology is going for as described in the quote above. we learned from the first several links, dancers tailor and customize their shoes extensively to make them "work" for the quirks of their feet, style, strengths and weakness, and type of repertoire. The way they dance in shoes with LilyPad controllers sew in is not really "their" dancing.
posted by desuetude at 11:43 AM on November 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

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