Many of our visitors are aware of the massive expansion project underway at PEM and have become accustom to noticing changes inside and outside the museum each time they visit. As a recent snowstorm swirled outside, the new Create Space at PEM was buzzing with builders, each designing their own building and working together to create a town. Part of an ongoing series called Studio Discoveries, our focus this time around was architecture. Leading the program was Anna Sanko, executive director of the Architecture Resource Center in New Haven, Connecticut.
We wanted to give our visitors a taste of what building design is like. We drew aspiring architects of all ages from a 2-year-old and his family to a set of grandparents who were looking for something to do while waiting to enter a timed exhibition. The energy and creativity that went into all the projects was boundless, designing a building is no small task. Everyone worked vigorously on the many design issues that arose; measuring, cutting, gluing, taping, picking the color palette, and deciding where their building should be placed among all the other buildings in the town. We learned there is a lot to take into account.
In the end, our town was filled with buildings of all sorts such as Lilliana’s Dress Shop, The Institute of DJ’s and Engineers, as well as quite a few more museums and ice cream shops than you would expect in most towns (which we totally support here at PEM). Each building, so unique, seemed to represent each individual who made them and collectively produced a thriving and colorful town, admired by many of our visitors during school vacation week.
For more information: Studio Discoveries is an ongoing program at PEM for all ages and abilities and is free with museum admission. We work on projects with professional artists and designers of all types to get an up-close look at some of their tools and techniques and gain an insight into their ideas a process. Each program is unique and welcoming. To learn more about the program, visit pem.org/families.
The Architecture Resource Center works with schools, community groups, universities and government organizations to increase general architectural literacy and design awareness through K-12 educational programs to improve arts and cultural literacy, community awareness and environmental consciousness.