One of the general fears with digital fabrication and robotics is that they will wipe away human artistry. But that will never happen as long as people like Stefanie Pender exist. Pender, who has degrees from both RISD and Cornell, gained proficiency in glassmaking through traditional apprenticeships; she’s also well-versed in industrial robotics, programming and all things CNC. After becoming an Artist in Residence at the digital fabrication playground that is Autodesk’s Pier 9, she had the opportunity to combine her specialties in a novel way.
Here’s what happens when you have a curiosity-driven, manually-skilled, technical-minded, boundary-pushing artist that has been granted the resources to create her own digital tools: