“What is a hackspace?” It’s a place where people can go to build things, share skills, learn and maybe use equipment that they don’t have at home. Does this sound good to you? They’re open to anyone, so think about finding one near you and dropping in. The Manchester Mini Maker Faire will be hosting quite a few Hackspaces. They’ll be showing off some favourite projects, running soldering activities and probably working on others, so stop by to have a go and find out more.
Do you have a growing collection of lone earrings? Wondering what to do with them? We’re really glad to be hosting a project in progress called The Chandelier of Lost Earrings which will be exhibited at St Mary’s Hospital, in Manchester. Two artists, Sagar and Campbell created and look after the Glass Summer Houseat the hospital and the chandelier will become an installation there.
They’re collecting earrings and the stories associated with them at the Manchester Mini Maker Faire, on 28 and 29th July. There’s a Twitter strand to this project too #chandelier so we’re looking forward to this taking off as well.
Even if you can’t visit, you can still be part of the project by tweeting @summerhouseart and sending earrings in the post to Sagar and Campbell as described on The Chandelier of Lost Earring’s facebook page.
A highly collaborative contribution to the Manchester Mini Maker Faire, this exhibit encompasses three projects. On display will be the knitted Rose Galaxy that was created by the University of Manchester’s In Stitches group as part of 2011 Manchester Science Festival. There will be two other projects in progress that visitors are encouraged to help with!
Rose Galaxy intarsia knitting project (image by Creativity Unleashing Potential)
At the Manchester Mini Maker Faire people can knit or crochet a square that will become part of a yarnbombing project in the city centre of Manchester. Members from the In Stitches group and the Manchester WI’s Purls and Wisdom group will be at the MMMF knitting and crocheting. Join them on the comfy red seats! The squares can be any size, pattern, colour or indeed yarn. This is all up to the individual creating the square. This is part of a collaboration with Yarnbomb Consortium and Creativity Unleashing Potential.
Additionally, in a further collaboration with Budleia Arts, members of the groups are also making tassels using the colours from the waterways of Manchester. These will decorate Brewer Street Bridge in Manchester as part of the Canal Festival 2012 in Piccadilly Basin.
By having a go at tassel making, knitting or crochet at the MMMF you’ll also be part of other events in the city.
We’re just over a week days away from Manchester’s first ever Mini Maker Faire and we’re really pleased that we have a great selection of Makers joining us at MOSI. We encouraged Makers to incorporate hands-on elements and they’ve done us proud.
Tony loads the giant Ker Plunk inspired game he made
There’s plenty of workshops to get stuck into, amazing interactive artworks and musical instruments, plus games like crazy golf and giant Ker Plunk.
All the Makers are passionate and enthusiastic about their projects, so when you’re visiting don’t be shy about talking to them. Maker Faires of all sizes, from mini to massive, are much more fun when there’s lots of “What if…?” “Could I…?” and “Have you tried…?” flying around. It’s not just about the things that are there in front of you, it’s about the things that are yet to be.
A risk assessment shows that you have considered (reasonable) risks to yourself and the people interacting with the exhibit. Providing us with a risk assessment allows our insurers to assess whether your activities come under our insurance.
If you haven’t prepared a risk assessment before, take a look at some examples and templates online. We’re happy to talk you through the process if you like, and you’ve got the direct email addresses in the Maker Pack.
A risk assessment consists chiefly of writing down common sense, which means telling us what you’re already doing or could easily put in place to reduce or remove any risks. For instance, it’s helpful to tell us that your equipment is in good condition and that it has been or will be PATested, that you know how to use it appropriately, maybe you won’t leave it running unattended. *edited to add* If your contribution generates fumes of any kind, the risk assessment is the time to flag it up and outline your ventilation needs. We don’t want to have to evacuate the building when sensors detect fumes, or have the fire brigade turning up unnecessarily. For extra belt and braces approach, even if you mentioned ventilation in the application, give us a shout on the Google Group or by any other means, so that we can locate you somewhere suitable.
Think about the kind of information that people might want to know before interacting with your exhibit and how you could present that information. Maybe you’re demonstrating something that has a peculiar side effect such as wiping hard drives. To reduce or avoid this risk, you could let people know about the effect and mark out an exclusion zone for things that are susceptible that kind of interference.
This is all stuff that we are sure you’d do anyway. We would just like to see it written down in advance of the event. We’ll deal with the physical spaces, things like first aid and fire alarms, so you just have to think about your exhibit.
If you have any questions, please contact us. You can also take a look at the Google Group to see if a similar topic is being discussed.
So, the fun and exciting confirmations went out to Makers a while ago. This week, with only 2 weeks to go until the event (deep breaths) we’ve asked our Makers to provide their Public Liability Insurance certificates.
We are well aware that a lot of people will not have PLI and we’re not asking people to go and buy it to participate in this one off event. If you do have it, we’d like to see a copy of the certificate. If you don’t have it, we really need a risk assessment from you as soon as possible.
“But my exhibit isn’t dangerous!”
We’re sure it isn’t, but all our Makers are required to write a risk assessment. Approach it as a plan of what you are going to do, imagining how an average* person might interact with your exhibit. This is especially important if what you described in your Maker Application is now different to what you plan on actually doing. In most cases, MOSI will be able to take you under our insurance so you won’t need your own Public Liability Insurance, but we do need your risk assessment in order to sort this out.
“Can’t we just sign a waiver?”
All events at MOSI require contributors to show that they have PLI and/ or risk assessments. We can look into waivers for the future, but it is not going to be possible to prepare a suitable one in time for this event. We’ll be collecting feedback from Makers to help us evaluate this event, so you could use that as an opportunity to comment on this topic.
Please contact us with your questions (or using the relevant addresses provided in the Maker Pack) and we will be happy to talk through the process with you. You can also take a look at the Google Group to see if a similar topic is being discussed.
In three weeks time, we’ll be getting ready to welcome Makers to start setting up for Manchester’s first ever Mini Maker Faire. We’ve got leaflets going out to Makers so they can remind or inform friends, family colleagues or complete strangers. A Maker Information Pack is nearly ready and we’re still working on the fine details of where exactly everyone will be located.
Most people will be in the 1830 Warehouse. If you’ve been to MOSI before, this is where we’ve the FuturEverything art exhibition, the Culture Customising and Harley-Davidson exhibition and BodyWorlds. It’s where the Connecting Manchester Gallery is so you could pop in and see models used in The Nightmare Before Christmas, and the dressing gown worn by Jeremy Brett when he played Sherlock Holmes.
The top floor of the Warehouse will be the principal space that will be filled with Makers and their projects. Here are some photos of an older layout that help to convey the what the space is like. The Maker Pack will detail what you can do in this Grade 1 listed building.
This is the main stair and lift tower that will bring people into the midst of the concentration of Makers on the top floor.
Beams, pillars, floorboards and exposed brickwork of the 1830 Warehouse top floor
Another angle showing floorboards, pillars and beams of the 1830 Warehouse
Imagine this space filled with enthusiastic people; exhibiting, visiting, being inspired, scheming their next project. It’s going to be great.
We’ve had a good response to our call for volunteers to help make the event run smoothly, so thank you for coming forward and offering your help if you already have. If you’re considering whether you can volunteer, please get in touch with us through firstname.lastname@example.org or give MOSI a call on 0161 606 0105by the 7th July*.