Call for Papers

12-14 September 2019 at Loughborough University in London

/// SUBMISSION: Submit via EasyChair

/// DATES: 12 -14 of September 2019

/// LOCATION: Loughborough University in London, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park



*   Deadline for submission of abstracts                                25th of March 2019 

*   Notification of acceptance of abstracts                                18th of April 2019 19th of April 2019

*   Deadline for submission of full papers                                   9th of June 2019 

*   Deadline for exhibition proposals                                            9th of June 2019

*   Notification of acceptance.                                                        17th of July 2019


TEXTILE INTERSECTIONS is a two-days conference and three-days exhibition of works organized by the Textile Design Research Group at Loughborough University in collaboration with Royal College of Art and Queen Mary University London exploring collaborations in textile design research to be held at Loughborough University in London between 12 – 14 of September 2019.

TEXTILE INTERSECTIONS is interested in topics related to connections and cross- or interdisciplinary collaborations furthering research in the field of textiles and textile design. The focus will be on the nature of collaborations textiles are susceptible to establish with other disciplines and the consequent opportunities for each discipline. How are these collaborations initiated? What makes a successful collaboration leading to innovative research? What are the issues? Why collaborate?


For paper presentations: a 200 – 300 words abstract for a conference contribution no later than 25th of March 2019 via EasyChair. The authors should also mention the track they are opting for.

Abstracts will be double – blind peer reviewed and accepted authors will be invited to submit full papers (3000-4000 words) by 9th of June 2019.  The accepted papers will be published in the conference proceedings. Conference contributors may be invited to submit to special issues in acknowledged journals after the conference.

The conference proceedings will be published online and available via Open Access. A select number of accepted papers will be invited to contribute to a journal special issue.

There will be a further call for exhibition contributions in Spring 2019. The exhibition will show work which demonstrates textile design research through collaboration and cross/interdisciplinary practice. This could be practice resulting from collaboration, a collection of research samples illustrating a conference submission or collaborative research.


/// KEYNOTE SPEAKERS: Ellen Harlizius – Klück (LU München) and Juan Hinestroza (Cornell University).



Following a first successful “Intersections” conference organized in 2017 in London, this second edition aims to address highly researched issues that focus on textiles which cannot easily find a platform of dissemination given their cross- or interdisciplinary nature, as well as to encourage new perspectives related to textiles research. The conference will question the kinds of collaborations textiles, as a medium of research, has initiated, the kind of connections, cross-fertilizations and hybridizations that are taking place, the kind of disruptions and constructive confrontations that might occur between different disciplines related to textiles.    

Highly present in our daily lives, textiles are more and more preferred for diverse applications: from apparel to interior design, from architecture to high performative technical applications. This prevalence in our lives is a result of the last 50 years of research and development in material sciences, chemical and mechanical engineering, electronics, design and digital technologies, creating new materialities. Threads and fibres can be woven as sensors and actuators, and fabrics can be fire resistant, super conductive, waterproof, and stronger than steel.

Still, with the promises of high functionalities, there are a series of constraints to consider: from the kind of applications they could serve, to the limitations related to scaling up production (Heinzel et. al. 2018), as well as their critical ecologies (Manzini 1989). At the same time, we should take into consideration the changes taking place in the textile industry (see the digitalization and robotization of the industry) and how these will impact on the social and economic structures that support this industry. These transformations, as well as the gaps between the desired evolutions and the limitations we encounter, ask for new tools and methods of investigation, most of them at the crossroad between different fields.

In order to dig into the connections and cross- or interdisciplinary collaborations, to further research in the field of textiles and textile design we propose four tracks: Textiles and Architecture, Textiles and Interaction, Textile Materialities and Processes, Critical Textiles.






Chairs: Delia Dumitrescu (University of Boras), Aurélie Mossé (ENSAD Paris), Mariana Popescu (ETH Zürich).

Presentation: Textiles have an extended history as materials involved in architectural design: starting with the research on the historic textile enclosures (Semper 2004) and continuing with their extensive use in interior design (Albers 1965), the asymmetric parallel between fashion and architecture (Wigley 1993, Quinn 2003) or the comparison between textiles and construction (Albers 1965, Palz 2012). Today’s textiles go beyond their known decorative functions, to be used as light and flexible structures (see the use of knitting and cement – ETH Zürich (Popescu 2018) or the use of textiles based solar-panels for building application – Kennedy & Violich), as well as to facilitate the acceptance of interactive environments in homes. For this track we invite papers that critically investigate these new paths related to the participation of textiles for and within architecture, as components of building engineering or as new forms of habitation using textiles. Suggested questions are:

  • How textiles intervene in architectural design and what are the challenges related to the appropriation of textiles in architecture?
  • What kind of approaches (methodologies) are available to better support the research on textiles in architecture?
  • What are the reasons for the use of textiles in architecture and how relevant are they from technical, social and economic perspectives?



Chairs: Jussi Mikkonen (SDU Kolding), Irene Posch (University of Arts Linz), Afroditi Psarra (University of Washington Seattle).

Presentation: The integration of electronics into textile structures opened new possibilities which enable the transformation of textiles into sensingand actuating systems (Berzowska, 2005). Light and sound are just some of the new features of textiles, while electro-magnetism and environmental data could be part of reactive, interactive and performative textile materiality. In this track we will investigate the performative character of textiles and we invite contributions that focus on textiles’ interactive nature and the new forms of performativity allowed by and through textiles. Particular attention will be given to the connections between textiles and sound (Heinzel 2013), the use of textiles for interactive scenarios (Gowrishankar, 2017), as well as to the way in which performance nurtures or troubles the debate related to reactive and interactive textiles.

Questions of interest could be, but not limited to:

  • What are the challengesrelated to the development of interactive textiles?
  • In which way could the collaborations between performing and visual arts, design and engineering enrich the discourse and the practice of performative textiles?
  • What are the prospects for significant applications in the field of interactive textiles and how could they be addressed?



Chairs: Berit Greinke (Berlin University of the Arts), Lewis Jones (Loughborough University), Manuel Kretzer (Anhalt University of Applied Sciences Dessau).

Presentation: Starting in the 1940s, a wealth of research has gone into the development of materials with new functionalities, broadening and enrichingthe area of application for textiles. Thiswas further supported by the development of new production processes allowing large-scale fabrication of these materials. Critically, more recently, as a result of large-scale manufacture, social and economic implications, as well as the ecological aspects of the textiles industry have been highlighted through research and media (Holkaret. al. 2016, Manzini 1998). The specific research topics to be targeted by this track are related to new and / or alternative manufacturing solutions to textile materials (Zhukovskyi, M., 2014). We aim to present collaborations between the fields of advanced material modelling, manufacturing systems and textile design, including digital fabrication and Do-It-Yourself (DIY) approaches. Contributions addressing the current environmental impacts of material use, as well as advanced manufacturing processes and measurementsare welcomed. We invite papers that show how textile design expertise can be used to guide analytical engineering methods to develop new solutions for textiles applications and production (Townsend et. al. 2017).

Questions to be addressed are, for example:

  • How does present-day research on new materials and processes refine/change the existing models of manufacturing?
  • In which way do interdisciplinary collaborations between design and engineering/scientific disciplines allow the development of new, significant applications for textiles?
  • What are the issues related to the scalability of manufacturingand what kind of new ecologies are to be considered?



Chairs: Fiona Curran (Royal College of Art, London), Nithikul Nimkulrat (OCAD University, Toronto), Oscar Tomico (ELISAVA Design and Engineering SchoolBarcelona / TU Eindhoven).

Presentation: Textiles not only feature in the avant-garde of technical research, but also within a multitude of other fields as well. In this track we will host papers which will explore the relationship between textiles and materiality, whether in terms of their relationship to philosophical concepts of materiality and matter (Bensaude-Vincent 2011), as well as phenomenology (Félix-Fromentin 2016), or to material culture (Ingold 2015), or to corporeality, the body and subjecthood. Through critical, theoretical, and methodological studies of textiles, craft, dress, costume, fashion and wearable technologies we intend to map the research which does not necessarily focus on textiles themselves, but which uses textiles as a catalyst for interdisciplinary collaboration and exploration. We would like to investigate the ways in which textiles can open, support, disturb or disrupt different forms of collaborative research, as a form of exchange, retrospection, reflection in which practice and theory are in dialogue. A special focus will be given tothe way in which critical craft and criticalpractices shape new discourses for textile practice, as well as how textiles can contribute to / intersect new materialisms and ecological thinking debates.

Questions to be addressed are, for example:

  • How might textile theories contribute to alternative, subversive, revolutionary modes of practice?
  • In what way can textile related modes of production testify of the limitation of the ever-present innovation rhetoric?
  • How theory can support the interdisciplinary collaboration challenges in the textiles field?



Semper, Gottfried (2004). Style, Harry Francis Mallgrave and Michael Robinson, Los Angeles: Getty Research Institute.

Albers, Anni (1965). On Weaving. Middletown CT: Wesleyan University Press.

Bensaude-Vincent, Bernadette (2011). “The Concept of Materials in Historical Perspective” in T.M. Zeitschrift für Geschichte der Wissenschaften, Technik und Medizin, Volume 19, Issue 1 (February): 107–123.

Berzowska, Joanna (2005). “Electronic Textiles: Wearable Computers, Reactive Fashion, and Soft Computation”, Textile, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp. 2–19.

Félix-Fromentin, Clotilde (2016), “Des matérialités vives, echo poétique des enveloppes vivantes portées par la Terre“, Le Philotope, 12, MaT(i)erre(s), Clermont-ferrand : Philau, pp. 251-260.

Heinzel, Tincuta (ed.) (2013). Haptosonics, Catalogue of the exhibition, Oslo: Atelier Nord.

Heinzel, Tincuta et. al. (2018). “Parallel Industries” in Kurbak, Ebru (ed.),Stitching Worlds. Exploring Textiles and Electronics, Berlin: Revolver Publishing, 66-69.

Holkar, Chandrakant R. et al. (2016). “A critical review on textile waste water treatments: Possible approaches”, in Journal of Environmental Management, Volume 182, pp. 351-366.

Gowrishankar, Ramya et. al (2017). “A Strategy for Material-Specific e-Textile Interaction Design,” in S. Schneegass and O. Amft (eds.) Smart Textiles Fundamentals, Design, and Interaction, Springer International Publishing, 2017, pp. 233–257.

Ingold, Tim (2015). The Life of Lines, Routledge, London, UK.

Manzini, Ezio (1989). The Material of Invention: Materials and Design, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Palz, Norbert (2012). Emerging Architectural Potentials of Tunable Materiality through Additive Fabrication Technologies, PhD Thesis, Copenhagen: The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts Schools of Architecture, Design and Conservation.

Popescu Mariana et. al (2018). “Building in concrete with a knitted stay-in-place formwork: Prototype of a concrete shell bridge”, in Structures,14: 322-332,2018 (June).

Quinn, Bradley (2003). The Fashion of Architecture, Oxford: Berg, 2003.

Townsend, Riika Claire (2017). The Cross-section of a Multi-disciplinary Project in View of Smart Textile Design Practice, in Journal of Textile Design Research and Practice, 5:2, 175-207.

Zhukovskyi, M., (2014). “Nanowire-functionalized cotton textiles”, in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces (2014), 6, 4, 2262-2269.

Wigley, Mark (1993).The Architecture of Deconstruction: Derrida’s Haunt. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.