The Very First Year

The Very First Year
July 27, noon-10pm

Join us for a full-day event exploring aspects of gender, feminism, technology and art in consideration of the fact that since Eyebeam’s founding 16 years ago, 2013 marks the very first year that its roster of Fellows and Residents includes more women than men.

Featuring afternoon installations and activities by Feminist Economics Department (the FED), Miki FosterJen Kennedy + Liz LindenQueer TechnologiesCassie Thornton, and Caroline Woolard, and an evening potluck dinner with presentations of current work by numerous female Eyebeam Alumnae.

Organized by current Fellow Laurel Ptak and inspired by her ongoing research at Eyebeam into cyberfeminist art practices since the 1990s.

The full schedule includes:

12pm: installations on view, coffee served, newspapers for reading
Installations on view all day will include: a Cyberfeminst Reading Room; a selection of Queer Technologies’ products including ENgenderingGenderChangers, a “solution” to Gender Adapters’ male/female binary and more; artist-made furniture designed at Eyebeam by Caroline Woolard; video presentations by Eyebeam Alumnae on their current projects and responses to The Very First Year.

1-2:30pm: New York Times Feminist Reading Group
A reading group dedicated to Saturday, July 27th’s edition of The New York Times from a feminist perspective. Participants are welcome to join regardless of whether they have read, skimmed, or even just glanced at that day’s paper. The discussion begins informally with whatever news item or question participants first raise, and ranges widely from investigations of specific articles or images, to editorial choices and ad placements, to the larger questions of the business of newspapers, the migration of news into digital formats, and the future of media in general. Hosted by Liz Linden and Jen Kennedy. Questions? Email [email protected]

3-4:30pm: Feminist Reproduction 3D Printing Workshop
A workshop on the fundamentals of how to use the MakerBot Replicator 2 Desktop 3D Printer, focused on its feminist potential. Miki Foster will teach the basics of 3D printing while the Feminist Economics Department (the FED) leads the production of an object with extremely high, yet completely non-monetary value. Attendees will learn about and participate in 3D printing as well as help produce the first 3D prototype of a feminist financial instrument and a new logic of value.

5pm: drinks and appetizers served, personalized 3D printing tutorials
Try your own hand at 3D printing on the MakerBot, Miki Foster will guide you through the process of printing files specially-developed by the Feminist Economics Department (the FED). You’ll be able to keep what you print and tutorials will run throughout the evening—until the filament runs dry.

6-10pm: Potluck Dinner featuring presentations of current work by Eyebeam Alumnae
Join numerous current and past female Eyebeam fellows, residents and honorary fellows who will present their current work over an informal and lively potluck dinner. Appetizers and drinks are provided by Eyebeam and participants and audience are encouraged to bring a dish or desert to share with all.

Upcoming The Very First Year events at Eyebeam will also take place on: Thursday August 15Sunday October 20Saturday November 9Saturday February 1. All are free and open to the public. Full details will continue to be announced at:

About the participants:

Eyebeam Alumnae have made and done many amazing things, at Eyebeam and beyond. Learn more about them at

Feminist Economics Department (the FED) began in 2011 by hiring an actress to play a fictional MFA student who performed breakdowns about the value of her debt at California College of the Arts. Collective projects include the BEAUTY SALON, hosted by Ictus Gallery, San Francisco, offering services by artists that heal economic wounds; and the Poets’ Security Force presented at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and California College of the Arts in 2012 and the Elizabeth Foundations for the Arts in 2013. The FED was developed by artist Cassie Thornton out of a desire for a collectivity based on her interest in the debt industry which promotes individual liability and denies trust and interdependence. Cassie graduated from the CCA Social Practice Program in 2012 and currently lives and works between San Francisco and NYC.

Miki Foster is a digital artist, filmmaker and educator. She has worked as a new media, video production and social justice educator for the past ten years. Her current artwork weaves audio and video narratives through craftwork and new/old networks of public display. She completed her MFA in Digital Art/New Media at the University of California Santa Cruz in 2009 and holds a Bachelors Degree from the Evergreen State College.

Jen Kennedy is a Montreal-based writer and artist. Her work has been published in journals including Grey Room, C Magazine, Image and Narrative, Fuse, and The Journal of Critical Studies in Business and Society, and a number of exhibition catalogues. Kennedy attended the Whitney Independent Study Program (ISP) from 2008–9. Liz Linden also attended the Whitney ISP from 2008–9.  She received her B.A. from Yale University.  Her work has been exhibited in various public and private institutions in New York including Ludlow 38, Bureau, and Art in General, as well as internationally in institutions including the Lunds Konsthall (Sweden) and the Stenersenmuseet (Norway). Kennedy and Linden have been collaborating since 2009. Their work has been been supported by the Department of Cultural Affairs/the Brooklyn Arts Council Community Regrant Program and a Puffin Foundation Artist’s grant. Their work has been exhibited and performed at The Whitney Museum for American Art, New Museum, The Brooklyn Museum’s Sackler Center for Feminist Art, The Center for Book Arts, ICI, and a number of other venues.

Laurel Ptak is a curator whose work investigates social and political dimensions of technology and contemporary art. She is currently researching the history of cyberfeminist art practices since the early 1990s and is organizer of The Very First Year.

Queer Technologies is an organization that produces critical applications, tools, and situations for queer technological agency, interventions, and sociality. By re-imaging a technology designed for queer use, Queer Technologies critiques the heteronormative, capitalist, militarized underpinnings of technological architectures, design, and functionality. QT products are shop-dropped in various consumer electronics stores, such as Best Buy, Radio Shack, and Target. QT items are produced as product, artwork, and political tool and materialized through an industrial manufacturing process so that they may be disseminated widely.

Caroline Woolard is an artist and organizer based in Brooklyn, New York. Making sculptures, furniture, and events, Woolard co-creates spaces for critical exchange, forgotten histories, and plausible futures. Woolard is a co-founder of and Trade School, two barter economies for cultural producers. By 2018, Woolard hopes to establish a community land trust in New York City with community organizers, computer engineers, and artists who are dedicated to lifelong commoning.

Projects: The Very First Year
People: Caroline Woolard, Cassie Thornton, CHiKAClaudia Hart, Feminist Economics Department, Jen Kennedy, Katayoun VaziriKatie TornKristin LucasLaurel PtakLauren McCarthy, Liz Linden, Miki Foster, Queer Technologies, Zach Blas
Tags: 3D printing, cyberfeminism, eyebeam alumnae, feminism, gender issues, potluck, reading group