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Seminar project invokes public-space artistry of Common Theme speaker

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First Year Seminar art project

Profs. Ellen Rosewall, Jeni Mokren and Michelle McQuade Dewhirst helped First Year Seminar students prepare for an upcoming Common Theme event this week, using art to improve the public space in which they learn.

Inspired by artist, designer and urban planner Candy Chang, who will speak on campus Thursday (Nov. 8), the students drew pictures and wrote words on pieces of paper that read “this is where I want to be” and “this is how college will take me there.” The myriad inspirational drawings and sayings then were posted on the third floor of Theatre Hall, where they will remain at least until Chang’s visit Thursday.

Chang is well known for her work to make cities more comfortable and contemplative places. She believes in the potential of introspection and collective wisdom in public space to improve communities and personal well-being. By combining street art with urban planning, social activism and philosophy, Chang has been recognized as a leader in developing new strategies for the design of cities. She will speak on “The City: 2.0” at 8 p.m. Thursday in the Phoenix Room of the University Union.

Chang’s visit is one in a series of events for the 2012-13 campuswide Common Theme, “Creativity, Innovation & Vision.” More information about the Common Theme, including upcoming events, is at www.uwgb.edu/commontheme/events/.

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