Posted September 17th 2012 at 7:13 pm by
in Art

Art and the Building of a Healthy Community

Safehouse, 2008-2010. Existing house, stainless steel, steel, wood, plywood, Gatorboardâ, lead- encapsulation paint, automotive body and paint finishes, 12,000 brass thumbtacks, 6,000 unique hand-drawn Fundred Dollar Bills. Overall size: 18 x 22 x 40 feet, interior walls are 10 1/2 feet in height. Image Courtesy of Mel Chin.

Mel Chin and Rick Lowe, artists and friends, will be in residence at MIT for the fall semester, 2012. They’ll be collaborating with students and faculty members to delve into this question: What can art contribute to the building of a healthy community?

Chin and Lowe will work on a project that demonstrates the importance of cross-disciplinary intervention in planning and development practice. Students will have a rare opportunity to participate in art-making with these renowned artists in an experimental setting during the fall semester. The artists will visit MIT classes, labs, and centers early on in their visit, looking for research and thought to inspire their project here. The artists return to MIT during the week of December 3, 2012 to continue their work and review the progress students have made throughout the semester.

CoLab, which publishes this blog, and the MIT Program in Art, Culture and Technology are co-presenting this visiting artist program. The groups hope to reveal the contributions artists can make to urban revitalization while examining the potential contributions of artists to an urban studies and planning curriculum.

On September 24th at 7:00 p.m., Lowe and Chin will present their work for the general public. Reserve your tickets; all are invited. CoLab Executive Director Dayna Cunningham will moderate a panel discussion following the presentation. The event is at Bartos Theater, Building E15, on the MIT campus in Cambridge, Mass.

MIT faculty and associates Dayna Cunningham, Xavier Briggs, Renée Green, Annette Kim, Mel King, Ceasar McDowell, Anne Spirn, Gediminas Urboans and others from the Center for Civic Media, MIT’s D-Lab and J-PAL (Poverty Action Lab) plan to engage with the artists while they are at MIT.

To learn more about the artists and the residency visit: MIT students can email Meg Rotzel, Producer of Artists in Residence, at to get involved.

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