Difference Engine: Repeating pattern, print and display – with Publik Universal Frxnd


1-3 November 2021

Every day from 10:00-17:00, with a lunch break from 13:00-14:00.


Monday 1 Nov: 5, Rue de l'Encyclopedie, 1201 Genève
Tuesday 2 Nov: 5, Rue de l'Encyclopedie, 1201 Genève
Wednesday 3 Nov: Bâtiment A, Location TBC !

Universität / Haute École
HEAD – Genève (Work.Master)
Publik Universal Frxnd
Contact email
for student applications
Content description

A repeating pattern is an image without a border, it has no centre, defies the rules of formal composition, can expand endlessly in any direction, and be figurative or abstract. Largely considered purely decorative, it can however be filled with narrative and representational forms, political struggle, and ambiguity/opacity. What possibilities are there in representation when we are freed from the frame, from central characters, narrative linearity, beginnings, and ends? What is the temporality of a repeating print design? What is its spaciality? What is its rhythm?

This practical workshop series takes its title from the 'Difference Engine', the name of the first computer, a calculating machine programmed by Ada Lovelace and engineered by Charles Babbage. Its development was directly connected to innovations in mechanical weaving and the development of punch cards. In this workshop, we will consider how the endlessly reproducible quality of print design could be considered a difference engine, not in the sense of an algebraic calculator but an engine to generate alternatives to standard visual representational forms.

DAY 1: Rhythms

Together we will create stencils that we can use to create a large repeating pattern.

DAY 2: Screens

Working all day in the textile workshop, we will compose our collective repeating pattern, building up layers to create a huge fabric print.

DAY 3: Interfaces

Time for installation of our fabric print. Looking together at what we have created, analysing, giving and receiving feedback, and considering what our collective textile print could become.


This Pool-CH workshop will be held in English /
Cet workhop Pool-CH se déroulera en anglais.