ACCelerate: ACC Smithsonian Creativity and Innovation Festival

Virginia Tech and the Smithsonian Institution present the first ACCelerate: ACC Smithsonian Creativity and Innovation Festival on October 13-15, 2017, at the National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C. The festival is a celebration of creative exploration and research happening at the nexus of science, engineering, arts and design (SEAD). The 2017 ACCelerate festival is programmed by Virginia Tech’s Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology and the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History, Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation. The festival features performances, conversational talks, and 48 interactive installations from across the 15 ACC schools around seven thematic areas: civic engagement, art and technology, sustainability and environment, biomimetics, health and body, and making. the 15 ACC schools.

Georgia Tech will send four projects created by students, faculty, and researchers. These projects were selected from among 35 Georgia Tech submissions juried by the ACC Festival Committee:

LuminAI: LuminAI is a dome-based art installation in which participants can engage in collaborative movement improvisation with each other and virtual AI-based dance partners. Rather than focus on the human as master creator and the computer as the traditional “support tool” - LuminAI examines how humans and machines can co-create experiences together. As a result, the LuminAI installation is a movement-based play space where participants can freely dance with AI-based characters. The virtual agents analyze participant movements and improvise responses; in other words, the agents learn how to dance by dancing with us. For space considerations, the interactive experience at the festival will utilize a large shadow screen. Participants: Brian Magerko, Duri Long, and Mikhail Jacob.

Electrocet: The Electrocet project started with the idea that you shouldn't have to buy a sports car or an electric vehicle or a commuter car - there should be a car that can excel in all driving scenarios, just by selecting the right drive mode. The Electrocet is a proof-of-concept vehicle for a super-versatile electric powertrain system that can deliver electric-only commuting, superb fuel economy, and thrilling acceleration. Students made everything: the frame, suspension, and drivetrain. The car is a bold concept for the future of automotive powertrain design. Participants: Ben Horst, Josh Preissle, and Alex Gray

Creative Collisions: Georgia Tech technologists collaborated with artist Katherine H. Fisher to build an interactive garment that engages audience participation in her performance piece Characters. The garment “Le Monstre” is a fun “fraggle rock” type creation that includes touch sensors, stretch sensors, distance sensors, and accelerometers. The creation of this project offered opportunities for artists to learn about engineering and technology creative processes, while also allowing experts in engineering and technology to see first-hand what artists need to relate to broad audiences in site-specific locations in their process and practice. At the festival, the garment will be on display with interactive capabilities. Participant: Clint Zeagler, Laura Levy, Katherine Helen Fisher, and Shimmy Boyle

RIB CAGE: RIB CAGE is an electro-acoustic instrument that incorporates elements of robotics. This instrument is designed to explore the relationship between human and robot co-performing in a single instrument. Through the use of robotics, the interactive aspect of the instrument is made physical and visible. The metaphor for this instrument is a rib cage (3D printed plastic ribs) with spines (aluminum bars) and a heart (solenoid and red LED). The human musician performs on the 3D printed rib cage as well as the aluminum bars while the robotic component hits the aluminum bars. The human’s performance on the instrument affects how the robotic components interact, and this robotic interaction is intended to affect and inspire the performer. The instrument is designed for performing experimental percussive music as well as drone and noise music. RIB CAGE won second place in the 2017 Guthman Musical Instrument Competition. Participant: Takumi Ogata

Event Details


    Washington, D.C.


  • Friday, October 13, 2017
    10:00 am - Sunday, October 15, 2017
    5:30 pm