Nomadic Monument for Women in Robotics

The Nomadic Monument for Women in Robotics returns to the Philadelphia Science Festival this Saturday, 5/4/19.

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The Nomadic Monument for Women in Robotics, designed by Diedra Krieger and Gaby Alfaro, celebrates the innovations of eight women pioneers in the field of robotics:

  1. Ruzena Bajcsy
  2. Lynne Parker
  3. Hadas Kress-Gazit
  4. Lydia Kavraki
  5. Ayanna Howard
  6. Daniela Rus
  7. Helen Grenier
  8. Katherine Kuchenbecker

Its goal is to create a community of women eagerly inviting aspiring pioneers to join them when entering the dome. The portraits and descriptions of women roboticists challenge stereotypes about who can be an engineer, allowing young girls to start developing a sense of belonging in an informal STEM learning environment. Joey Hartmann-Dow’s near life-sized portraits of the pioneers at eye level around the inside of the dome create a space that allows for a visual connection between the visitors and the roboticists. Visitors can read quotes of key moments or experiences that inspired them. Stereotype challenge, sense of belonging to a community, and having same-gender role models correlate with interest in engineering by women and girls. The Monument was sponsored by the Philadelphia Science Festival and The GRASP Lab.

More about the project here.

 

 

Mattress Factory

I’ve known about the Mattress Factory since around 2002 and it was one of my first exposures to the idea of installation art. Finally, 13 years later, and well into my own journey into making installations of 1% of the imagination, I made the journey there with my partner and our 3 month old baby. It was amazing!

(image above in Chiharu Shioto’s “Trace of Memory”. The rooms of the entire row home were woven with black string blurring the spaces.  )

We were there so long I ended up nursing baby twice and we ran out of time to go to the Warhol Museum. At one of the James Turrell installations – perhaps the darkest art work I’ve ever experienced. We walked up the ramp in a narrow hall way with a hand rail into the space and cheated by using a phone to see. It felt like a sight seeing look out at some place like a mountain range. We left, read the sign and went back into it, this time with no phone or other light source and sat there for the 15 minutes or so that was recommended to see it. That’s where I nursed baby and of course could not help but reflect on his time in the womb and how dark it must have been in there. It was nice to have the visual sensory deprivation. No photos from that one!

Our stop in Pittsburgh was on our way to Toledo with Plastic Fantastic to mark the one year anniversary of the toxic algae bloom, and at Mattress Factory we came across this installation where the artists (an architect and scientist) created an imagined  living room / domestic situation where people grew micro algae.

This was also where I nursed the second time that afternoon. A perfect environment.

image of Julie Schenkelberg‘s The Color of Temperance: Energy Embodied   And a video https://goo.gl/photos/oTaY2BDrkC8LCbcc9 I loved how she broke down perhaps what was a bedroom from how it should be constructed and its purpose; what seems like should be debris and discarded, is given new life.

I enjoyed how the artists were focused on domestic spaces and our relationships to them.

Plastic Fantastic at The Young Women’s Leadership School, 2014


Plastic Fantastic visited The Young Women’s Leadership School in Queens, NY 2014. The students collected the 6000 water bottles needed over the fall. Art students made posters about Plastic Fantastic, recycling and water bottles to help raise awareness about the project. There was a competition to collect water bottles for the month of October and a 7th grade class won a pizza party for collecting the most. Ms Schneck’s art classes put the bottles on grids so they were ready to be applied when the dome armature arrived. During Plastic Fantastic’s visit in early December, we constructed the dome and attached the bottles. Students were part of the decision making on grid placement. Jeremy Prouty and Kristen Bailey ran puppet making workshops and puppet shows in the dome, two of which are in the video. The dome has been up as a public art installation on the TYWLS campus since December 4th, 2014!

ABMB Images of Art Work from Scope, Untitled and NADA

Images from my visit to ABMB in December 2013.

NADA
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Scope
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Francesco Lo Castro

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NADA – “Metal Fatigue Music” blissful bass mix experience, so many levels of deep, encompassing bass, perfect pre-fair going decompression prep. Ben Vida on Soundcloud.
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UNTITLED
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ADA Gallery Jared Clark
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Royale Projects: Contemporary Art – Karen Lofgren and Phillip K Smith

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Auxilary Projects – Adam Thompson
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Kink at Deja Vu Decor

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