Grandma Cooker | Readymades w5

This 3 weeks long project was,

Create a readymade that responds to a physical input with an emotional output. This emotional output could be human, animal, robot or extra terrestrial and take the form of a physical reaction, color, sound or light. The object itself can’t be human or animal form.

For me, I make a cooker that represent my Grandma, Grandma Cooker.


Brief introduction

Grandma Cooker turns out to be an interactive object that honoring the great dedications that my grandma has been giving to our family over her life and to all the women that have given up their time to sustain their family.

Ever since I started to know things, I remember my grandma will cook for dinners whenever there is a holiday to our entire family. Usually she prepared days to offer us a great dinner. Until one day I noticed she is really aging up over these years, I realized all these efforts she has generously given to her family is probably the main reason she become older. She enjoys it, but still I feel guilty about it.

The sound of this installation is recorded from my grandma singing a Chinese country song.

Final documentation


Materials of making

  1. electronics: 6 TIP120, 6 DC motor fans, Arduino, 1 Bluefruit bluetooth module, 1 9v 2A adaptor for fans, 1 5v adaptor for Arduino.
  2. others: 2 mist makers, 1 slow cooker, acrylic board for laser cutting, 1 potentiometer with switch, projector


Max patch

Arduino code

Process of making

1. Testing the projection effect on steam.


At first I wanted to project something more concrete on the steam, like an image of chili or bun, but after testing them on the steam from a humidifier, I tailed it to project something more abstract.

2. Unpack the slow cooker and dissemble it.




I cut the original switch adaptor off, because the voltage of the original come out was too high and was not safe.

This slow cooker breaks down to 3 parts in the end. 1, main inside pot, 2, outsite holder, 3, one foundation at the bottom with hole for wires.

3. Do wiring for the electronics


After I tested my circuit diagram on breadboard, I wired it to a perf board.










4. Add extra electronic(potentiometer and indicating led)

Screen Shot 2016-03-18 at 8.17.12 PM

It turned out to be hard, because the entire cooker is made of metal witch can easily get my circuit short later.

5. Pack all of the components together


It includes 3 layers, the very bottom one is to store all the electronics, the middle one is a tank of water with mist makers inside to generate steam constantly, the top layer is fans, controlled by the knob(potentiometer) in the front of the cooker through an Aduino.


As you transit the mode of this cooker from Keep Warm to High, grandma’s voice changes from normal to old and raspy, and cough more.

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