Wearable Art (OCADU)


Course Outline

Course Description: 

Students explore the rich capabilities and inherent expressiveness of the human form by creating works of art meant to live on and around the body. Students will research and create interactive and participation-based projects that explore both physical and psychological engagement. Topics might include for example fashion, wearable tech, textiles and materials, embodiment and nonverbal communication. Students with credit in GART-1B24 may not take this course for credit.

Course Goal:

The goal of this wearable art course is to empower students to conceptualize, explore and create unique wearable pieces that not only showcase artistic expression but also contribute to a broader understanding of the intersection between art, culture, personal identity and society at large. The course seeks to foster creativity, critical thinking, and a deep appreciation for the diverse and dynamic world of wearable art,

Learning Objectives: 

  • Understand and apply human form as a medium of artistic expression.
  • Develop personal style and interest through the creation of wearable art.
  • Experiment with different materials, techniques, and styles to foster artistic expression with wearable art.
  • Explore applications of technology in wearable art, such as electronic components and interactive elements.
  • Explore the role of wearable art in different cultures and societies in various contexts. 

Course Content

Week content Assignments
  Section 1: Exploring Identity through Wearable Art Projects 1: Creating wearable art pieces reflecting a personal identity in cultural and/or social contexts.
1 Overview of wearable art as a form of self-expression 

Historical context of wearable art

Project 1 brief

In class exercise. 

2 Introduction to different wearable art mediums

Analyzing the role of materials in wearable art

Experimentation with various materials:


Concept and sketches:

Your body is a unique platform to create art that reflects the world around you. Choice of mediums.

3 Wearable Art is an expression of identity and reflection of the world around us. 

Research, concept and critical insight.

Due: Wearable art in the making process and prototype  

styles and techniques – prototype -structure 

4 Process and techniques for creating wearable art:

  • Traditional art and craft
  • Mechanical process 
  • Digital technology. 
Due: Final Prototype

Show and tell


Project 2 Brief

  Section 2: Wearable Art as a Tool for Activism  Project 2: Research 

Wearable art as an activism medium.

5 Definition and history of activism

Examining notable artivist movements

Analyzing the impact of wearable art in activism

Due: Research an artist/designer practice wearable art – visual research, DBQ and outline
6 Case studies of successful artivist wearable art projects

Analyzing the impact of wearable art in activism


Response paper draft and structure. 

  Midterm Break No Class
7 Participatory and socially engaged practice in Wearable art.  Presentation of DBQ visual research finding.
8 Airbrush and Fabrication Workshop:explore materials, surfaces and rendering in wearable art. Project 3 brief.
  Section 3: The Intersection of Technology and Wearable Art Project 3: Integrate your wearable art with technology to advocate for social changes.
9 Introduction to wearable technology:

Body, Wearables and Performance

Exploring the integration of technology in wearable art

CNC, Arduino, 3D printing and Image transferring. 

Artist/designer: Neri Oxman

Due: Creative concept and research of technology and application in wearable art. 
10 Introduce speculative methods in art creation. 

Interactive wearable art as a reflection of the future world

Due: Adding Interactive component to the wearable art 
11 Studio workshop: putting the work together – prepare for the final wearable art work finalizing Interactive component to the wearable art 
12 Final project exhibition and critique  All projects due
13 SAS Extension / and one-on-one appointments

(no class)

Last chance for reiteration.
  End of the course: Final Grading