The Legacy of Theo Jansen: New Workshops Across Chile

The Wind Algorithms educational program will continue in two distinct forms: workshops designed by CECREA Center staff of the Chilean Ministry of Cultures, Arts and Heritage, and activities offered by the Ecoscience Foundation in their ConCiencia bus tour.

Theo Jansen during his visit to Santiago, April, 2018.

One of the focuses of the Theo Jansen in Chile project, which brought his kinetic sculptures to this country for the first time, has been to bring children closer to his ideas through a varied and extensive educational program. In Santiago, more than 400 students participated in 34 free activities, along with the more than 10,000 who attended the exhibition, Wind Algorithms, at the Cerrillos National Center of Contemporary Art. Beginning in August, different workshops that unite art and nature will take place throughout Chile.

Children are the ones who understand my work the best. Maybe it is because I still have the freedom to think like them,” Theo Jansen said at his conference in Santiago, before opening his exhibition, which received more than 47,000 visitors between April 14th and July 1st, 2018. Much of this audience was made up of students, school groups and teachers, interested in understanding the physical and imaginary elements that coincide in Jansen’s kinetic sculptures.

Claudia Barria, one of the teachers who participated in the Active Teachers program, working in the design of her workshop.

His thoughts and work inspired the Educational Program designed by Fundación Mar Adentro in collaboration with the FabLabs of the Universidad de Chile and the Universidad Católica as well as Cerrillo’s Center education team, who led and conducted the Program’s workshops in different locations of the city that generated experiences on topics such as self-perception and group movement, robotics and 3D printing.

Although the exhibition is ending, its educational legacy continues with related programs across Chile. First with the Active Teachers program taking place in August, which has invited six educators from CECREA centers across Chile, who created and completed their own workshops inspired by Jansen’s ideas and work. The Ecoscience Foundation’s ConCiencia bus, which links scientific research and artistic endeavors, will also carry out activities in the CECREA centers in La Ligua, La Serena, and Magallanes region.

The ConCiencia bus from the Ecoscience Foundation tours through Chile.

The ConCiencia workshops, with their mobile laboratory, seek to explore the concepts of diversity and evolution through the construction of a toy/animal from prefabricated parts made of reused materials, able to move because of its core rotating piece connected to a power source.

The workshops overseen by CECREA will be distinct to each respective place. They are the result of the personal and collective work completed within the interdisciplinary Active Teachers program of Fundación Mar Adentro. The educators were invited to Santiago to visit the exhibition and share their visions and experiences with their peers and professionals from the FabLab programs of Universidad de Chile and Universidad Católica. The projects all observe and examine nature in order to understand environmental and climatic problems, and identify creative solutions by using a range of materials to create concrete objects. Thus, the workshops address diverse themes and experiences: the natural and beneficial relationship with the coastal edge in Iquique, the biomimicry of birds and sounds that are transformed into objects in Chiloé, and the aquatic fantasies and luminous sea organisms of Punta Arenas.

All information about registration, programming and contacts can be found here.