Art and architecture: two new exhibits open on campus

Reanna Comiso, Features Editor

There is often a divide between people and their communities. With many having increasingly busy and hectic lives, it becomes hard to make connections between how community can impact individuality. Two new galleries at the College of Dupage (COD) main campus are setting out to combine aspects of the everyday life in order to bring up new perspectives of community.

Architecture students are making home in the Techcetera Gallery, with outside artist Faheem Majeed showcasing UNITE, his new exhibit at the Cleve Carney Gallery.

With the galleries being a collaboration between Majeed and architecture students, the galleries are related to one another in certain aspects. UNITE showcases artworks that incorporate materials from Majeed’s immediate community in the South Shore neighborhood of Chicago to address the larger issues of community activism and institutional racism.

For several pieces in the gallery, Majeed utilizes items like particle board, recycled lumber and steel, spray paint and various Kool-Aid flavors. The combination of the recycled materials creates a unique composition of color on something that is typically dull and boring.

With this, the architecture students were asked to create something different from their everyday tasks, emphasizing on greater unity between COD and its community members.

Architecture students met with Majeed in January, where he discussed and demonstrated his skills. Following the meeting, the architecture students accepted the task of finding dull, unused areas of the campus and then creating something new and unique to put in its place,

“I knew what was lacking, so it was easy to choose the space and design it,” said Daniel Garczek, an architecture student at COD.

Working in groups of four, the students began to work on finding ideas for their designs. For this project, they were asked to explore campus, create a “blueprint” of the design and build a miniature model of the final project  to physically show off their design.

“The hardest part of the group was trying to incorporate everyone’s design ideas into one cohesive project,” said Garczek. “There were groups with various great ideas, but unfortunately they had to be scrapped to get one cohesive final project.”

Garczek and his group created an idea for a “Honeycomb Plaza” at the Technical Education Center (TEC) building. “Our group choose that particular space because we are in that building everyday and we don’t see anyone using the space,” says Garczek. “With the new cafe in the building having direct access to the courtyard, we wanted to activate the space.”

They chose the concept of a “Honeycomb Plaza” to replicate the idea of how bees swarm in a hive. The group focused on building a hexagonal canopy to shade the courtyard of the TEC building. Portions of the canopy protect against the rain and provide shade. Below the canopy would host seating areas and several semi-private rooms to allow for gathering in the courtyard.

When the Techcetera gallery opened on Jan. 25th it was a bit of a mystery for the audience. The gallery did not include any individual works by students, but rather acted as way to receive information about what was to come from the architecture students.

What can be found in the gallery now includes the plan views and the cut-out plans of the students, modeling the ideas that they had to make campus a more interesting and inviting place. There is a possibility of these projects being implemented on campus, though the costs would be high and would require an large amount of work.

Works from the architecture students can be found in the Techcetera Gallery until Feb. 22nd., with the gallery being open Mon. through Thurs. from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in SSC 2211. UNITE can be viewed in the Cleve Carney Gallery now until April 7. The gallery is open Mon. through Thurs. From 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sat. from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.