July 1, 2022


It's Your Education

COE Science Education and learning professor Chris Schnittka engages art community in “Studio Saturdays”

This summertime, the Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art on the Auburn University campus has been web hosting an exhibition titled “Crafting The us.” The exhibit, arranged by the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas, options works in ceramics, fiber, wood, steel, glass, and other unanticipated resources. It presents a varied tale of American craft from the 1940s to the existing.

Supported in section by a Town of Auburn K12 Arts Instruction Grant, “Studio Saturdays” has highlighted COE Science Education and learning professor Christine Schnittka, Ph.D. In these drop-in periods which are cost-free and open to the community, Schnittka, who in addition to her academic schooling as a scientist and engineer is an artist performing in watercolors and other media, has provided demonstrations and palms-on projects to examine science and engineering in traditional crafts. Her learners in Science Education and learning have also been part of the crafting classes, getting genuine-planet experience as informal science educators.

“The Crafting America show carries the concept of celebrating craft and underrepresented persons making all those crafts,” Schnittka said. “My recent space of desire is the intersection of science and common crafts. So, I proposed a series of Saturday workshops for the public, such as equally young ones and adults, on that topic.”

Consuelo Jimenez Underwood “Home of the Brave,” 2013 Wire, silk, fabric, protection pins, and synthetic and natural threads 72 x 99 in. Courtesy of the artist © Consuelo Jimenez Underwood photograph by Michael Tropea

There have been two systems in the series so significantly. A the latest pottery workshop attracted 40 adult males, females, teens, and college-aged youngsters who participated in classes the place they created objects and realized the methods but also realized about the science of clay.

“I had my pupils support as assistants, as I do just about every week,” she mentioned. “Our future workshop was on ecoprinting. Individuals chosen leaves and flowers and pure dyes, and hammered them into fabric and discovered all about the chemistry of those pigments.”

Nick Cave “Soundsuit,” 2009 Cloth with appliquéd crochet and buttons, knitted yarn, and metal armature 97 x 26 x 20 in Crystal Bridges Museum of American Artwork, Bentonville, Arkansas, 2010.59 Photography by Edward C. Robison III

The ultimate workshop, which will be held on Saturday, August 28, will aim on weaving with an emphasis on the scientific attributes of woven resources and the technological programs they have. All contributors will be generating looms and weaving unusual elements with them from 10 a.m. to midday in the museum atrium.

Christy Barlow, the museum’s university and community courses senior supervisor, mentioned the workshops have been a huge strike.

“Studio Saturdays have offered people new insights on the science behind common and unfamiliar art products,” Barlow reported. “Knowledge of equally subjects improve enjoyment and studying. Our intention has been to build on this partnership with the Faculty of Instruction and other educational departments by means of a wide range of channels, which includes K12 educator workshops, university course visits and additional local community engagements. Our turnout has been great and we quite significantly take pleasure in our college partnerships and the inspirational perform of folks like Chris Schnittka.”

In her specialist existence in the Higher education of Schooling, Schnittka develops and researches style and design-based curriculum models for elementary and middle college youth, concentrating on vital science principles as a result of a maker lens. Her curricula have been employed by lecturers in additional than 33 states and 13 countries. As indicated previously mentioned, she is at the moment investigating the science and engineering embedded in common crafts, hoping to flip her findings into more curricula for elementary and center college lecturers to use.

Sabrina Gschwandtner Hands at Function Movie, 2016 16mm polyester film, cotton-wrapped polyester thread, lithography ink 68 1/8 x 45 in Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Reward of the 2020 Ornamental Arts and Design and style Acquisitions Committee (DA²) in memory of Peter Loughrey © Sabrina Gschwandtner, courtesy of the artist and Shoshana Wayne Gallery Images © Joshua White – JWPictures.com

Dr. Schnittka is a former middle college science instructor and has been instructing elementary and secondary science schooling for 12 decades. She has printed her work in journals this kind of as the Worldwide Journal of Science Instruction, The Global Journal of Engineering Education and learning, Developments in Engineering Schooling, Science & Little ones, The Science Teacher, and Science Scope. She teaches science procedures, educational know-how, and evaluation courses. A inventive polymath, she likes to spend her free of charge time with her knitting needles in one hand and clay in the other.

The museum’s revamped office of instruction, engagement and understanding welcomes student and college collaboration. To get associated, speak to [email protected] or call 334.844.1484. Admission to The Jule is totally free. “Crafting America” is on check out by Sunday, Sept. 12.