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Director of Texas A&M’s Institute for Applied Creativity in College Station, artist and professor Carol LaFayette, spearheaded reGEN—conceived as an annual collaboration between Land Heritage Institute (LHI), Texas A&M-College Station and Texas A&M-San Antonio devoted to regeneration and sustainability in a time of climate change. eMERGE is this part of this year’s iteration of reGEN.  Lafayette’s own art practice involves collaborations with scientists and engineers to invent ways of experiencing interconnectedness between flora, fauna and phenomena in rural areas.

Philadelphia-based visiting artist Lynn Palewicz - whose own work is self-divided into skin drawings, living room photos, torso photos and girl photos - mentored this Visualization class’ preparation for the pop-up show and will help guided the artist talks.  

A portion of the Saturday afternoon’s talks were dedicated to discussions around what this annual collaboration between Texas A&M’s Institute of Applied Creativity, Texas A&M-San Antonio, Palo Alto College and Land Heritage Institute might look like over time. The San Antonio contemporary artist community was encouraged to contribute to this conversation.

Leonardo di Caprio’s new climate change documentary, Before the Flood, had its south side screening followed by speakers and a Q&A session at Texas A&M University’s main auditorium. This event was organized as part of reGEN by TAMU-SA’s Dr. Joseph Simpson, H. Drew Galloway at MOVE San Antonio and Mario Bravo of the Environmental Defense Fund.

reGEN represents an unprecedented cultural collaboration between departments of Texas A&M campuses in College Station and San Antonio--plus Palo Alto College—working in partnership with Land Heritage Institute’s Art-Sci Projects directed by Dr. Penelope Boyer. 

For more information, visit the College of Architecture facebook page or The Regenerative Development blog.




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Visualization prof's NSF-funded STEM-to-STEAM effort prompts Academies to green-light study

"The green-lighting of a National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine study investigating the value of integrating arts and humanities into science and technology education is a milestone in the global transdisciplinary education movement," said Carol LaFayette, a visualization professor at Texas A&M University and founder of an advocacy network on the vanguard of the movement.

With initial support from the National Science Foundation, LaFayette created the Network for Sciences Engineering, Arts & Design (SEAD Network) to advocate for STEM to STEAM — namely, adding art and design components, the "A," to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) teaching and learning.

(read full article here)





Visit and lecture by Dutch kinetic artist Theo Jansen

Dutch kinetic artist Theo Jansen visited campus on November 18 for two lectures and meetings with students and faculty. Architecture and Visualization students gathered at Blue Baker for breakfast and discussion. Architecture faculty Negar Kalantar Mehrjardi and Alireza Borhani Haghighi shared work on fabricated, adaptable, and transformable design. Theo Jansen explained how Strandbeests will achieve autonomous evolutionary life, through open source 3D printing of beests by current and future generations. Jansen’s visit was co-hosted by the Institute for Applied Creativity, the College of Architecture, the Department of Visualization, the Department of Physics and Astronomy, and The George P. and Cynthia Woods Mitchell Institute for Fundamental Physics and Astronomy.





Keck Futures at National Academies 2015

The IAC, LIVE Lab, and the Vizlab gathered at the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative (NAKFI) conference on Art, Science, Engineering, and Medicine in Irvine on November 11-14. It was organized as a think tank to collaboratively address national grand challenge problems from multiple points of view. NAKFI also showcased intriguing art and science exhibits addressing multi-modal experiences, including sight, touch, smell, and taste. It is the first time artists have been invited to participate in a NAKFI annual conference.

Schaefer Mitchell, Fermi Perumal, André Thomas, and Carol LaFayette exhibited an interactive roster, the result of a mobile app that encouraged attendees to call each other before the conference. Participants collectively created a story about a day in the life of certain characters living 100 years from today, as a result of this gathering. Visualization students from Time Based Media contributed short animations scripted by participants.

Dan Goods, artist in residence at NASA, exhibited "Refraction," an interactive display of light, water, and motion. Brandon Ballangée, artist, biologist, and environmental activist, exhibited "Love Motels," a sculpture that attracts insects to ultraviolet light. David Edwards, a Harvard professor who founded Vapor Communications with former student Rachel Field, demonstrated his OPhone and Ardvard Haar, a scent-based experience that delivers the olfactory and taste equivalent of whiskey, chocolate, and cotton candy. 

Think tanks gathered to address seed challenge topics. Participants are eligible to apply for seed funding to continue developed project ideas.





Milky Way 2015

Plastics: Call for Collaborators 

We are building a team of collaborators from art, design, engineering, and related fields to develop processes for recycling plastics. Anticipated outcomes include art and design projects as well as innovations of benefit to manufacturing and recycling industries. 

Our team will explore:

  • Insights on new materials and processes for recycling;
  • Infrastructure and support for building an economical and portable system to make products from waste plastics, such as grinding, melting, and reforming;
  • Strategies to avoid toxicity in process and product;
  • Methods and tools to make everyday objects from recycled plastics, such as molding, stretching, bloating, and 3D printing; and
  • Resources and funding opportunities in conducting such research and creative work.

Prior work:

Plastic Poetry

Milky Way

Cloud Igloo 

If you are interested in joining our team, or can recommend someone, please contact Weiling He, PhD, Associate Professor Coordinator of Foundation Design Studios, by September 1, 2016.  Thank you for our consideration. Sponsored by the Institute for Applied Creativity.




Moore College

Viz professor receives honorary degree from visual arts college

For leading a movement to engage art with science in education and research, Carol LaFayette, a visualization professor at Texas A&M University, recently received an honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts degree from Moore College of Art & Design in Philadelphia.

LaFayette, holder of the Harold L. Adams Interdisciplinary Professorship in Visualization, was chosen for the honor by Moore’s honorary degree selection committee, which consists of faculty, students and the school’s academic dean.

“Her work expands the boundaries of art and science in this ever-increasing interdisciplinary world,” said Cecelia Fitzgibbon, Moore president. “She is a role model for students and worthy of this recognition.”

LaFayette was honored May 15, 2016 at the 166th commencement of the school, the oldest women’s visual arts college in the United States.

In 2011, the National Science Foundation chose LaFayette to organize a network of scientiests, engineers, artists, and designers interested in bridging gaps between disciplines. The effort yielded the Network for Sciences, Engineering, Arts and Design, or SEAD Network, an international group thatadvocates for STEM to STEAM — intersections of art and design with science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Today, STEM to STEAM is a global movement.

Due in part to SEAD Network initiatives, in December 2015 the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine launched a two-year studyinvestigating the value of integrating the arts and humanities with STEM education, the first time the concept has been investigated at such a high level.

In addition to championing STEAM initiatives, LaFayette, serves as director of the Texas A&M Institute for Applied Creativity, which collaborates, coordinates,and advocates for multidisciplinary study through the application of creativity and innovative thinking.

LaFayette also works with scientists to invent unique ways to experience interconnections of flora, fauna and phenomena in her laboratory/studio, a regenerating, former ranch in Texas.

She was honored in 2010 with the Texas A&M College of Architecture’s J. Thomas Regan Interdisciplinary Faculty prize and she received a Distinguished Teaching Award in 2003.

The original article can be found at