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Designers in Residence

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The Designers-in-Residence (DiR) program has been created to infuse innovation and current design principles, thinking and insight into NYSCI’s Science Career Ladder. During their residency, DiRs will participate in public programs and be paired with a small group of two or three Explainers. DiRs come to NYSCI to engage with museum culture, explore our resources, and work with their Explainer partners. The goal of the program is for the DiR and Explainer teams to test ideas with the public, develop new work or new components of existing projects, and introduce different perspectives into the way NYSCI presents information and engages with our multiple publics.

NYSCI is seeking deep engagements with local thinkers, creators, makers, educators, artists, technicians, architects, and engineers working in and around the design community for the second year of its Designers-in-Residence (DiR) Program.

Look out for DiR 2020 projects on the floor in Fall 2022.

Editor: Jairo Cuenca. This video was produced by Explainer TV, NYSCI’s science communication youth development program.

2020 Designers-in-Residence

3-Month Residency

Jonah Brucker-Cohen, Ph.D., is an award winning researcher, artist, and writer. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Journalism and Media Studies at Lehman College / CUNY in the Bronx. He received his Ph.D. in the Disruptive Design Team of the Electronic and Electrical Engineering Department of Trinity College Dublin. His work focuses on the theme of “Deconstructing Networks” and includes hundreds of creative projects that critically challenge and subvert accepted perceptions of network interaction and experience. His artwork has been exhibited and showcased at venues such as SFMOMA, Canadian Museum of Contemporary Art, MOMA, ICA London, Whitney Museum of American Art, Palais du Tokyo, Tate Modern, Ars Electronica, Transmediale, and more. His projects, “Bumplist” and “America’s Got No Talent” are included in the permanent collection of the Whitney Museum of American Art. His writing has appeared in publications such as WIRED, Make, Gizmodo, Neural and more. His hardware hacking Scrapyard Challenge workshops have been held in over 15 countries in Europe, South America, North America, Asia, and Australia since 2003.


6-Month Residency

CHiKA is a New York-based, Japanese artist who works in light sculptures, audiovisual performances, and technology. As an educator, she is the founder of a projection mapping and LED pixel mapping workshop, MappathonTM, teaching students projection mapping techniques, from conceptualizing to finalizing the installation. She has been showing her artwork and teaching in both the US and abroad.

Her installations revolve around the Japanese homophone revealing the hidden meanings. It has a unique combination of meanings that are pronounced the same as another word but differs in purpose in Chinese characters. This concept expands her ideas; revealing the hidden meanings. She uses it to constrain rules of structure and conceptualize her light sculpture. Her main elements of the installations are deeply inspired by minimalistic, simple geometric beauty, Japanese philosophy, Zen, and sound. It contains complicated mechanisms that interact with her desire to allow the public to see new experiences in time and space.


3-Month Residency

DOTDOT is an award-winning creative studio focused on generating impact through playful, social and immersive experiences. Founded by Kate Stevenson, Chris White and Jacques Foottit, the team combines creative, hardware and software expertise to create innovative experiences both on-screen and in real-world environments. Whether it be creatures that live on the sides of buildings, immersive 3D worlds where every element is a musical instrument you can play, or collaborative multiplayer virtual reality escape rooms, DOTDOT brings the audience into the story-world and invites them to be active in the story.
Their clients include technology companies looking to showcase new technology in artistic and compelling ways (Google, Samsung, Bose), museums who want to engage their visitors with meaningful content (Te Papa, MOTAT, Kaikai Kiki Gallery), and brands looking to reach audiences in new and exciting ways.

DOTDOT is currently based at NEW INC at the New Museum where they are working on a virtual reality solution for museums that makes it affordable and practical to exhibit multiplayer virtual reality experiences.

2019 Designers-in-Residence

6-Month Residency

Marco Castro Cosio’s project, Bus Roots, seeks to equip the roofs of urban buses with lightweight roof gardens to explore the benefits of green spaces and food production and distribution in cities like New York City. He will work with Explainers to develop activities around the Bus Roots project to allow for different entry points and audiences.

Marco Castro Cosio’s Explainer Collaborators: Anika Zaman, Daisy Tetecatl

Marco Castro Cosio graduated from the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and has worked as curator of exhibitions and art festivals in New York and Mexico. He was director of the MediaLab at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where he helped the museum to imagine the futures of culture and fostered a network of brilliant and creative professionals dedicated to connecting art and its audiences through innovative activations. Prior to that, he worked as the first Visitor Experience Manager at the Queens Museum. As an artist, his work nourishes urban communities in practical and playful ways. Marco contributed to the series proposed by the UN, Rio +20, and is a member of the Climate and Urban Systems Association (CUSP). He was a TED speaker-in-residence and is currently a visiting scholar at the Institute for Public Knowledge at New York University and a research fellow at the Brown Institute for Media Innovation, within the School of Journalism at Columbia University.


3-Month Residency

Ray LC’s project, Machine Gaze, is an interactive experience from the point of view of the machine enabled by computer vision and machine learning. A sculptural installation that uses projection mapping to create interactions surprising to humans when they walk close to it, Machine Gaze allows humans to catch a glimpse into the creative life of a machine sculpture as it gazes into how we walk and talk, learning about our world as it runs its tasks. Ray is holding workshops with Explainers on frontier technologies in machine learning and neuroscience while developing the project collaboratively with their help in building, prototyping and testing the concept and experience for the general public exhibition.

Learn more about Machine Gaze on Ray LC’s website here:

Ray LC’s Explainer Collaborators: Stefanie Torossian, Aaliyah Alcibar, Alejandro Baez

Ray LC is an interdisciplinary artist and designer who incorporates cutting-edge neuroscience research as a foundation for building experiences that create empathic bonds between humans, and between humans and machines. He constructs physical installations, interactive experiences and narrative works from the multidisciplinary perspectives of creative technology, art and science.


3-Month Residency

LoVid plans to use their residency to develop a new interactive/participatory installation, building on their ongoing interest in relationships between the natural world, the human body and technology. They plan to develop two aspects of this work with their Explainer collaborators: wearable technology and research-based audiovisual environment development.

LoVid’s Explainer Collaborators: Uzaiza Khan, Katherine Chauca

LoVid is the New York-based artist duo comprised of Tali Hinkis and Kyle Lapidus. LoVid’s work includes immersive installations, sculptural synthesizers, single channel videos, textile, participatory projects, mobile media cinema, works on paper and A/V performance. Collaborating since 2001, LoVid’s projects have been presented and performed at numerous international galleries and museums. LoVid’s projects have received support from organizations including: The Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, Signal Culture, Cue Art Foundation, Eyebeam, Harvestworks, Wave Farm, Rhizome, Franklin Furnace,, New York Foundation for the Arts, Lower Manhattan Cultural Center, Experimental TV Center, NY State Council of the Arts, and Greenwall Foundation.


3-Month Residency

Krystal Persaud’s project, Solar Cat, is The Cutest Solar Panel Ever Made. The exhibit centers around a giant, 140 watt cat-shaped solar panel that is mounted to the window. The energy harvested by Solar Cat powers an adjacent interactive pedestal that features fun facts & diagrams about how solar panels work. Visitors can physically flip a switch to send Solar Cat’s harvested energy to power up a model house. Visitors can also charge their phones using one of two built-in USB ports that are powered by Solar Cat. This exhibit not only educators visitors about solar technology, but demonstrates how creativity and design can push technology to be more accessible.

Solar Cat was created by NYSCI Designer-in-Residence, Krystal Persaud, Designer & Founder of Grouphug, in collaboration with NYSCI Explainers: Kristian Roopnarine, Estefany Gomez, & Sophia Madonia, with support from Electrical Engineer, Kristin Salomon.

Krystal Persaud is the Desinger & Founder of Grouphug, a tech company empowering people to live their best sustainable life in style. She is also a founding member and former senior director of product design at littleBits, the award-winning platform of magnetic, electronic blocks that empowers everyone to invent. Krystal is obsessed with developing products that fall in the intersection of education, technology and society.


Extended Residency

Brooke Singer is continuing to develop a citizen science platform for a project called Carbon Sponge, which focuses on soil health and enhancing understanding of, and the capacity for sequestering, carbon in our soil. Her work embraces open research and the inclusion of various perspectives. During her second year as a NYSCI Designer-in-Residence, Brooke will work with Explainers to raise awareness of Carbon Sponge with NYSCI’s audience through demonstrations, workshops and activities.

Brooke Singer is a media artist whose work blurs the borders between science, technology, politics and arts practices, and takes the form of websites, workshops, photographs, maps, installations, social spaces and performances that involve public participation in pursuit of social change.

2018 Designers-In-Residence

3-Month Residency: January – March 2018

Jaehyun Kim designs and produces digital and non-digital games and playful experiences for children.

Jaehyun is looking to introduce the Explainers to “VR 101” by modifying her existing VR bike workshop to figure out different ways that the NYSCI audience can explore VR.


6-Month Residency: January – June 2018

Brooke Singer is a media artist whose work blurs the borders between science, technology, politics and arts practices, and takes the form of websites, workshops, photographs, maps, installations, social spaces and performances that involve public participation in pursuit of social change.

Brooke is looking to develop a citizen science platform for a project called Carbon Sponge, which focuses on soil health and enhancing understanding of and the capacity for sequestering carbon in soil. Her work embraces open research and the inclusion of various perspectives. She wants to work with Explainers to study if promoting soil health and creating pathways for citizens to take charge, can slow down the release of carbon and turn soil into a tool to fight climate change.

Listen to the Carbon Sponge audio tour here. Read more about the Carbon Sponge project in this article by WNET’s Peril & Promise.

Credits: This project was written and performed by Explainers, Sahery Arain and Cara Lambrento. Additional voice performance by Iggy Miranda. Audio recording and engineering by Aaron Mack. Additional content and project support by Brooke Singer, Sarah Perl Egendorf, Marisa Prefer, Danny Fabricant, Michael Cosaboom, John Pope, Sumaq K, Elizabeth Slagus, and Erin Thelen.


3-Month Residency: April – June 2018

Jan Mun is a media artist who creates social sculptures working with digital and living media. The environmental landscape has become her framework to unfold stories about others and herself by using a combination of artistic and scientific process, that manifest in the form of interactive installations, photography, performance and bio-art.

Jan is looking to build off of two previous projects that activate the use of mycoremediation and art to innovate bioremediation practices for a historically contaminated community in New York City. She would like to work with Explainers to build an awareness campaign to support her ultimate goal to conduct a New York City-supported scientific field experiment on bioremediation on the footprint of a former oil tank along Newtown Creek.


3-Month Residency: February – April 2018

Killer Snails develops award-winning learning games and immersive virtual reality experiences that explore the amazing ecology, biodiversity and medical application of extreme creatures of nature. Killer Snails’ goal is to bring science out of the laboratory and into classrooms and living rooms.

Killer Snails is looking to introduce Explainers to “game design 101” with a series of workshops and exercises to consider how NYSCI exhibit content can be transformed into games. Working with Killer Snails is an opportunity to learn game design and to develop something for visitors to use, and potentially, NYSCI to produce.