What is the pressing theme, issue, or question you intend to address?

ArtLab is a cross-disciplinary effort that explores the intersection of art with science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Emphasizing a cross-disciplinary approach that draws from media, art, and design, we aim to nurture a vibrant intellectual community at the intersections of these disciplines with a focus on exhibition and outreach opportunities. There are three main focus topics for the current proposal. These include ArtMed, ArtComSci, and ArtSciComm. Overall, the key issue that ArtLab will address is fostering an innovative collaborative hub that benefits researchers, students, and the public.

ArtMed: Artist-in-residence experiences with Vanderbilt Institute for Infection, immunology, and inflammation (VI4)

Eric Skaar, Ph.D., M.P.H., Director, Division of Molecular Pathogenesis,                          Vice Chair for Basic Research

ArtComSci: Art of Algorithms

Douglas Fisher, Ph.D.  Associate Professor of Computer Science

ArtSciComm: Science visual communication 

What other faculty, departments, and/or schools are involved?

ArtLab began as a project lead by Kendra H. Oliver, Ph.D. in the Department of Pharamcology within the Basic Sciences, School of Medicine and we have had a number of undergraduate experiences that have been supported by the Communication of Science and Technology Program in the College of Arts and Science. However, we also work with a diverse array of faculty from across the university including established collaboratations with a number of research faculty within the Art Department, Basic Sciences (School of Medicine), the Nashville community and Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

What are the intended outcomes or metrics of success? 

ArtLab has three primary metrics used to define success: (1) to develop a centralized hub for ArtScience projects spanning the Vanderbilt University community, (2) to offer immersive research experiences in ArtScience and science communicationthat deliver tangible projects, and (3) to create an ArtLab studio, exhibition, and media space. We are rapidly meeting these goals. In particular, The Wond’ry, The Communication of Science and Technology Program and The Curb Center.

How has ArtLab advanced graduate and undergraduate education?

ArtLab is developing  fellowships and workshops for undergraduates, graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and faculty. Graduate and postdoctoral fellows can assist in faculty-based projects and mentor mini-experiences for undergraduates. In the Spring of 2019 we offered an iSeminar course, CSET 1001.1 “Exploring Science Through Art: Artist-in-Residence,” that explored this approach. To see student responses please visit the class website https://freshairvanderbilt.com

Two different types of undergraduate immersive research opportunities are available; academic year experiences (research credit through Communication of Science and Technology) and an 8-week Undergraduate Summer Fellowship. The Summer Fellowship experience will allow students to explore either a topic developed by their faculty advisor or a topic that they have designed independently. We are piloting this approach this summer with a remote artist-in-residence collaboration with VI4.