The ArtLab Studio
Welcome to the ArtLab Studio
In 2017, the ArtLab program emerged from a desire to better understand the intersection between arts and sciences. ArtLab has become an epicenter for design, visual science communication, and science outreach through innovative and engaging exhibits that showcase top biomedical researchers’ latest findings through art. Through fellowships (44-fellows 2017-2019), participants gain experience and create artwork. Interested in outcomes-driven practices, we evaluate our program to better understand the impact of science exhibitions and outreach. We utilize iterative design practices by examining the programmatic approaches and their impacts. We have collected extensive data on both participants and exhibition attendees (over 2500 total) including demographics, self-reported participation in exhibit activities, interest in continued programming, and willing to engage in a STEAM2D (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics, Manufacturing, and Design) community.
The Wond’ry features an ArtLab studio two Makerspaces outfitted with a laser printer and other equipment to explore your creativity. The ArtLab studio is open to all of the Vanderbilt community and will serve as a hub for collaborative design and interdisciplinary activity particularly focused on science communication and outreach.
To support this mission, the ArtLab supports the following:
- Tools and equipment
- Training workshops
- ArtLab Fellowship (undergraduates)
- Graduate mentors to assist in project development
- Free use of the space as well as a mix of free and subsidized materials
- Exhibitions and events
About the Team
Kendra H. Oliver
Director of ArtLab
Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology, Basic Sciences, School of Medicine
Senior Lecturer, Communication of Science and Technology, College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Kendra H. Oliver studies education and science communication practices at the intersection of art and science, particularly visual communication. She wants to understand how visual communication programs, including artist-in-residence programs and artist-scientists’ collaborations, can impact the public social curiosity of science and technology (S&T). This focus includes consideration of both practical (programming approaches, online vs. in-person engagement), and theoretical (artistic versus scientific process, visual communication, informal science education) elements.
More generally, Kendra explores the relationships between public engagement activities and visual science communication. Her research has touched on:
- Informal science education approaches for adult learners
- Online versus in-person science educational practices
- and visual communication of science concepts
Kendra has published in peer-reviewed journal articles, presented at a variety of conferences from multiple disciplines, and curated numerous science exhibitions and workshops. Her work has appeared in a wide range of journals including the Journal of Biological Chemistry, Leonardo, and the International Journal of STEM Ed. She has received funding from the American Heart Association, American Society of Cell Biology, and internal funding from The Wond’ry, and The Curb Center for the Arts, and Policy.