Costume as Wearable Technology

Going Digital 2018
Keynote Speaker Marija Tavčar*
“Costume as Wearable Technology”

Modern need for constant communication, networking and information exchange has led to a rapid development of wearable technologies, wearable computers and intelligent fabrics.  These technologies can be used in different fields of medicine, war industry, cosmetics, sports, fashion, gaming, film etc. This paper focuses on wearable technology in the context of performance arts and analyzes in what ways technology affects contemporary arts.

Technology implemented into art systems creates new forms of expression and aesthetics in interactive and performance art, virtual reality, video games, fashion etc. and strongly influences the reproduction of new social, cultural and individual texts.

The aim of this paper is to establish that the performing body dressed in wearable technology becomes a fluid entity, articulated trough interaction between social, cultural, individual and technological interpretations within the performance. The performing body fused with technological interfaces is described as a constant process of (re)configuration and (re)definition.

*Artist, Costume Designer and Researcher


Marija Tavčar was born 1982 in Belgrade, Serbia where she graduated in Fashion and Costume Design at the Academy of Fine Arts. In 2017 she completed a PhD Dissertation titled Interactive Costume: Body-Technology-Costume at the University of Arts in Belgrade. The aim of her dissertation was to define the term interactive costume and subsequently utilize it as a conceptual framework for the analyses of the entanglement between technology and contemporary art.

Marija Tavčar worked as a lead costume designer and as an assistant costume designer for numerous theatre plays, operas, ballets, performances and one musical. She designed and manufactured puppets for two theatre plays.

Marija held four individual and took part in various collective exhibitions. Apart from conducting theoretical research focused on the ways that body, technology and costume interact, she also held two exhibitions of wearable technology in 2011.