What is WIMS?

In today’s developed societies we all own an unprecedented amount of “stuff” and nothing is more representative of this than our attitudes to the mobile phone.

The increasing demand for smartphones in developed societies and the huge market for mobile phones in the developing countries have led us to ask the following questions:

  • Do you know what's in the stuff you use every day?
  • Do you know where the chemical elements in your things come from, how they're extracted and how much is left on our planet?
  • How often do you discard something rare and precious without even realising it?
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What’s In My Stuff? brings together science and art in a creative and multi sensory way, extending traditional boundaries that rethink how the public engage with science and the material world.

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Pop-up Field Lab

In September 2011 students and staff at Sheffield Hallam University were invited to take part in the first experimental “pop-up” What’s In My Stuff? field lab. Constructed in a public space within the university the lab created an environment where individuals could engage and participate through an interactive experience.

The challenge was to deconstruct a mobile phone into as many pieces as possible. Used phones of various vintages were provided along with the tools to dismantle them and equipment to magnify and record the components that were revealed inside.

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Creative Jewellery Making

The intention of the What’s In My Stuff? project is to engage the public and raise awareness of the chemical elements used in our everyday objects and to explore whether an emotional connection between people and high technology devices can be created through the making of contemporary jewellery objects. This creative work is being carried out by Maria Hanson an established Designer Maker and Reader in Metalwork and Jewellery at Sheffield Hallam University.

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