Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Art School: This book is probably fascinating but the words are too big....

Today is Wednesday, so it was Sustainable Forms Day.
Last week we went to Urban Farm, on a field trip. After that, we were to collect and document our trash for a week, and to take 3 types of items we collected and manipulate them in three ways each.

Or maybe it was three items, one manipulation each. I'm unclear. IN any case, I tried to collect my trash for a week, but Brian kept tossing it out. At some point I said "Look, I'm going to have to tell the professor that my husband threw out my homework, and everyone will laugh at me."  So, for a few days, he'd point to things and say "trash or art?"  Samantha neatly packaged up some snack wrappers for me.

For my samples:

I have a collection of the grey cord that comes on the shopping bags that Apple gives you. If you buy a large item, there are about 4 yards of cord in the biggest bag. I reused the bags themselves without the cord, and then I save the cord.  Sample 1: I wanted to use it as a tracing plate. I spiraled it, then tried attaching it to fabric with WonderUnder. Instead, it melted to itself. Apple uses plastic cord. Or maybe nylon. Not cotton.  Interesting effect. Sample 2: macrame. (Hey, it's cord) Sample 3: coiled a bundle of cord as if it was tiny sailing line.

My second set of samples were pieces of a big yogurt container that I had melted with a heat gun. It shrinks similarily to shrink plastic, but in different ways, as the object was formed differently than the sheets.  The group thought I should play with this idea for my project due in two weeks and several people said they like the giant yogurt too, and would save me the containers. One of the other students gave me three containers right then and there. After class, I washed the containers and put them in my locker. By the time this project is over, I might have a locker full of yogurt containers. But they'll be clean of course. The last time I had a locker was when I had my mammogram, if you don't count that, high school.

We did the sample thing last. In the first part of the day, we discussed a bubble map of sustainable. And then we made rope out of strips of fabric and or yarn. We used big wooden yarn makers. That was fun. I've made cord before, using the bobbin winder on my Pfaff to twist the cord. This was sorta like that, but on a bigger scale.

Besides the "craft" part, we spent a lot of time today discussing sustainability some more.  The students in the class are fascinating. Many of them are world travelers at a very young age. All of them have a really interesting outlook. Lots of piercings and tattoos too! Interesting fashion. It's all very interesting.

One thing that strikes me, because I haven't worked in an office in years so I don't know how the corporate world is: the students do not talk in the elevator. This morning, I got there early, so I went down from the 10th floor to the 2nd to get some coffee. On the way back, I had to wait for an elevator, as it was just before the hour and everyone had to get up to their classes. There was a guy waiting for the elevator too. When the elevator came, the doors opened and a solid wall of people GLARED at me. I didn't move. The doors closed. I said to the guy "sorry, they didn't seem amenable to letting me on." He laughed and said something friendly. Then the next elevator came and I just walked over and got on, didn't pay attention to see if there was glaring. There was a bit of space. I waved to the guy to come into the elevator. He said he's wait.

Now here's the thing. I've been on the Cambus at the University of Iowa. After a football game, I swear they get 50 people on the bus AFTER it appears to be full. We're not talking about standing room, we're talking about people giving up their personal space, no squooshing, but people are close.

We could get double the people in the elevator if those students at SAIC were a little more friendly to each other. Or maybe the Iowa thing has something to do with football games. And tailgating. Maybe the tailgating...

I have to say that when we are a group waiting for the elevator, people are respectful. I'd say everyone is respectful at all times. But just quiet in the morning. I have this urge to get on the elevator tomorrow morning and say "Good MORNING EVERYONE!!! What great day in CHICAGO!" or, I could save it for a blizzard.

And finally, I did mention the loud pants luncheon today. We were talking about the internet connecting "makers". I mentioned the quiltart list, and the tiaras and the loud pants. And how we all communicate with each other.


  1. Hi Robbi,
    I'm really enjoying your posts about art school and feeling lots of identification because I went back for a masters when I was over 50.