In this weeklong workshop, students are introduced to basic electronics and programming using the Arduino platform, while applying these skills into dynamic sculptural creations. The limitless possibilities of developing code and mechanics are examined. Students rethink applications of the technology, apply an interdisciplinary approach to art making, and are inspired by a sense of wonder.

Link here to official class page.


Students explore various ways to integrate Arduino mechanics with paper sculpture to craft kinetic and interactive work, be it in the form of still sculpture, mobile sculpture, or wearables. Begin with creating interactive mechanics using code, an Arduino Uno, sensors and LED lights. Then, students design the sculptural element using various treatments of paper (folding, mâché, painting). We then explore ways to bring these two together to make physically moving and interactive work.


Day One

We spent the first day learning the basics of circuitry, electronics, and Arduino, utilizing the Arduino “Blinker” sketch as a grounding point.

Student learning to use the Arduino for the first time.

Student learning to use the Arduino for the first time.

Changing the Blinker sketch to incorporate buttons.

Changing the Blinker sketch to incorporate buttons.


Day Two

A full demo-day creating a simple cardboard robot, using a modified variation from Make This! CHI 2017.


Day Three, Four, and Five

Students spend the last three days of the week creating their final individual projects. We went through an ideation exercise, formed an execution plan, and created their final works.


Class Materials

Introduction Presentation: Introducing myself and my work, process, interests.

Pre-Demo Presentation: Introducing components and the Blinker sketch, as well as modifications

Demo Presentation: Introducing circuitry and the Robot demo

Arduino code for class robot

Paper and Kinetic Sculpture Inspiration Presentation

Game Plan Worksheet to help students define their steps for individual projects.


Make This! Introduction to Electronics Prototyping Using Arduino, Published in CHI 2017

Make: Easy Electronics, by Charles Platt

Make: Electronics, Second Edition, by Charles Platt

All photos taken by Anna Burch