Saturday, June 20, 2015

New Building Photos

I finally got myself into the new building with a camera. (Too bad all my iPhone pictures look blurry lately). So here, finally, are some pictures of the new clay studio (I didn't get pictures of the other studios, yet). 

throwing space in the main studio

The main room is divided into two main sections with a throwing side and a hand-building side. The throwing side consists of 16 student wheels, plus an ADA wheel and a teacher's station wheel. All but the ADA wheel are Thomas Stuarts. The hand-building side has 5 or 6 work tables and lots of space to move around. In the old studio we had 16 wheels, plus one that didn't have a pedal, about 4 work tables, plus one that usually was over taken by kiln-related items or metalsmithing scraps.

studio from the teacher's perspective

The major improvement in the new studio space is the space! I am so accustomed to walking over students, asking them to stand up so I can pass, or rearranging shelves, boxes, etc, so that students have (temporary) room to work). The new studio boasts increased counter space by the wheels and an entire damp closet in which students can store their work, not to mention the simple fact of room to walk around, through and past work stations.

teacher "station" at the front of the hand-building space (incomplete wedging tables along back wall)

The teaching options are also greatly increased. First of all, there is a teaching station in the studio, complete with computer, AV and whiteboards where students can actually see them. I said my goodbyes to the projector cart in the Media Center and plan never to roll it on its tiny wheels across the cracked and uneven path to Palmer Hall where I then have to move my class to a different room in order to access a portable screen on which to project a partially visible Powerpoint. I am also looking forward to having internet access in the classroom where I can show a whole class an image on the spur of the moment.

glaze room with ventilation, sinks, (small) drawers and shelving

One of the reasons the room feels so much larger is that the glazing room has moved to a separate space. The glazes, underglazes, dry materials, spray booth and two sinks are all going to be kept in a glazing room. The old operating procedure was to store the glazes under a table next to the wheels. When they were pulled out, the students glazing inevitably got in the way of the students throwing, and vice versa.
washer dryer and (small) mixer in the clay storage and recycling room

Clay storage, mixing, laundry and kilns are also housed in spaces separated out from the main work space. This not only increases ease of navigation and use of the classroom space, but it should cut down on noise, heat, distractions and even dust in the main studio space. 

the indoor kiln room (old gas kiln and new electric kilns)

The kilns are in a separate room with plenty of space. The main problem for the last month in the Palmer Hall studio has been the inability of the air conditioning to keep up when any of the kilns are running, or even cooling down. In the new space there is a door between the work space and the kilns, not to mention the fact that the AC and heating are likely to be more reliable in a new building, as opposed to a building which has been in its current state for 20 years at least. 

the outside kiln yard with a pit and a disassembled raku kiln

I'm not entirely sure how old Palmer Hall is, but I believe it may have been the art building since the 1980s. I have been in it for 9 years and when I came to YVCC in 2006, there had already been one attempt made to replace the building. Before it was an art building, moreover, it was a library, which makes some sense out of the odd arrangement in the very middle of the building, which has been used for storage, office space and a teeny tiny bathroom.

YVCC Campus circa ? (16th Ave is on the bottom/right, Nob Hill is top/right)

When I was in the Facilities Operations office this week, waiting to discuss kiln placement, I noticed this picture on the wall. It is of the campus long ago, but unfortunately didn't include a date. If you look closely, you'll notice Palmer Hall, Prior Hall, Larson Gallery and earlier versions of what I'd guess are the HUB and Sherar Gym.

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