march 2018 newsletter
As we approach the end of the semester Living Arts is excited to present an update on how our community has been encouraging and fostering an interdisciplinary approach to creative pursuits!
This newsletter will recap some of the exciting activities we’ve had in the past semester and will provide insight into thought processes of our current and former students and faculty/staff that assist with our program. This newsletter serves as the medium through which you, our members and supporters, can gain insight into our wonderful community.
Important Community Dates
Friday, March 9th:
Saturday, March 10th:
Friday, March 16th:
Saturday, April 7th:
December All-Community Meeting
The December All community Meeting was lead by the Living Arts residential advisors, Sara Eskandari, Mitchell Curtiss, and Socrates Papageorgiou. They presented a creative Interdisciplinary activity titled: Acting Through Video Games. Using specific video games as their inspiration, students were tasked with researching the game itself, developing a script, creating costumes and finally acting out a short performance of their shared thoughts around the given topic. This was a very creative and enjoyable experience for the Living Arts Students. Well done residential advisors!
View more photos on our Flickr Page.
2018 Alumni Reunion
The sixth annual Living Arts Alumni Reunion took place on January 18, 2018. Alumni gathered in our Creative Lounge at Bursley Hall for a dinner catered by Jerusalem Garden, followed by our main event of the night: creative presentations. Past members of Living Arts presented what they have been working on since completing the Living Arts program.
Sophie Hullinger, Justin Ni, Seth Andrews, and Amanda Taylor (LA '16-17) presented their progress on an animation pilot that has been in the works since last summer. Srishti Gupta and Bonnie Jiang, both juniors (LA '15-16), presented their art portfolios. Spencer Haney (LA '14-15) spoke about their experience in college and Living Arts. Stephanie Sim (LA '15-16) performed some of her original poetry, and Ryan McDonald (LA '16-17) closed out the presentations by performing a song that he wrote on the guitar.
Afterwards, alumni enjoyed ice cream and had a photo session where they were able to take polaroids of each other to keep as a souvenir of the night. Photos of the event can be found on our Flickr page.
Bubble Tea Social
Nothing says Living Arts like alumni socials! Alumni kicked off February at our first alumni social event of the semester, which took place at Sweeting on South U. There, alumni were able to enjoy a night of bubble tea and good company.
Community Member Spotlights
Mitchell Curtiss has been a member of the Living Arts community for the past four years. He started out as a first-year student, then served as a peer mentor for two years, and is now spending his senior year as one of the Living Arts Residential Advisors. Mitchell is a student in the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning majoring in Architecture with a minor in Physics.
What were some of your most memorable moments from your time at Living Arts?
“Things really clicked for me when I started the Dungeons & Dragons campaign in Living Arts. I didn’t know a whole lot about D&D at the time but I wanted to see if anyone was interested. There was such an absolute outpouring of enthusiasm for it that even that first “create-a-character workshop” that I did was one of the most memorable experiences. That culminating with the giant sessions that we’ve done with everyone in the same room at the same time is just chaotic and fun in a way that so many things aren’t and can’t be. A lot of my biggest memories from Living Arts is being able to do that on such a large scale with so many different people and characters getting to know each other in a more in-depth way.”
How was your experience with the Collaborative Creative Project?
“I had a great cohesive group that all took amazing initiative, it was greatly inspiring. The project we came up with was everything I would want my CCP to be. None of us had ever worked with virtual reality, but taking something that we all know super well, the university, and displaying it in a way we knew nothing about is the essence of the CCP in Living Arts. It’s taking something that you know and doing it as something you would never imagine before.”
What were your takeaways from the UARTS 150 course?
“I greatly enjoyed the course. It was actually a large part of the reason I chose to change my major [from civil engineering to architecture]. I think the time constraints of the course are actually a huge asset for it. Getting to work on those things in a short time period, you really start to feel how much the professors and students in those fields truly know what they’re talking about. While you just scratch on the surface, you realize just how big the iceberg below the surface is.”
“The writing that occurs in the course was a good introduction to short-form meditation upon work that has occurred. The ability to think critically about the things that you’re doing and your motivation behind things is the biggest carry over from [UARTS 150] into my general coursework.”
What would you say to a prospective student?
“Being in Living Arts was the best decision that I made in college. It’s a unique community, something that you’re not gonna get anywhere else, especially as a freshman coming into the university. If you’re here, might as well be in a wonderful community that’s a little bit smaller, a little bit more condensed, and you can get to know the people in a deep and interesting level while also not overwhelming yourself with rigor and coursework and co-curricular activities. Living Arts is very efficient with the time that it uses. You get something out of everything that you do.”
“I had great experiences in Living Arts once I started trying things that I had never tried before Living Arts. When you’re in an environment like Living Arts, everything is within someone’s comfort zone so if you’re in over your head or if you don’t know what to do, you have someone to go to that would be able to help you through that.”
Mitchell will be graduating from the university at the end of semester. We thank him for his time spent in Living Arts and wish him all the best in entering the workforce!
Living Arts Symposium 2018
Living Arts is about sharing ideas and approaches to creating in an interdisciplinary environment. The Collaborative Creative Projects bring together groups of students in a variety of disciplines within the community, for the purpose of creating something new, interesting or compelling by sharing their different talents and abilities with each other. Students have been working throughout the year in interdisciplinary teams on various projects with guest artists and faculty. The Collaborate Creative Projects allow our students to take what they have learned and stretch their wings on their own with guidance from Living Arts Alumni and ArtsEngine staff, working through phases of creative process to address a given topic or problem.
Please join us for project presentations at the Living Arts symposium on Saturday April 7, 2018 from 4-6 pm in the UM Duderstadt Art Gallery on North campus. The projects will be on display, April 7-12th.