Wednesday, August 12, 2015

(Basically) Out of Palmer Hall

gas kiln ready to move

Summer classes ended last week at YVCC. This week I think I can finally say that I am done packing up in the old building. I said that to myself on Monday afternoon, then remembered that I needed to pack the student work from the DoVA show (kept in the back room). I said that again Tuesday morning, then remembered the raku glazes. At this point, I think I actually am done. (Or did I forget the raku cabinet--I'll have to check).

old Palmer Hall with the clock tower and Glenn-Anthon in the back

For nine years, I've worked in Palmer Hall. It's not a large building, so I've also worked in other buildings for most of that time (I've also taught in Deccio, Glenn-Anthon, Prior, the Technology building and once in the old Anthon building). My office has been in four different buildings, counting the new Palmer-Martin building.

gas kiln moving out

Palmer Hall has been slated for destruction for basically all of that time. I was originally told the building was "condemned." The things I am most looking forward to leaving behind:
  • the bumpy walk from Media Services pushing the computer cart
  • the always light and shared room in which we show presentations
  • the tiny space I have to squeeze through to turn on the fan for the electric kilns
  • the one-room clay studio that gets noisy and hot when the big kiln is running
  • the small space that forces me to step over wheels when teaching a full class
  • the pug mill as our main clay recycling tool
  • the clocks that don't match from one side of the room to the other (even after we re-set them)
  • the tiny bathroom in the back room
  • the tiny TV for showing class demonstration videos
  • the increasingly quirky wheels
  • the small damp cabinet
  • the leaky ceilings
  • the awkward screens in the middle room
  • the office location that encourages students to interrupt me when they don't have questions
  • being far away from other instructor offices and our Office Assistant

the old Palmer clay studio

But I shouldn't be so hard on the old building. There are some things I'm going to miss:

  • the large raku area
  • the central campus location
  • the central location of my office, so I can see what is happening in the studios all the time
  • the breeze from the open doors (granted, we are usually trying to regulate the studio temperature by opening the doors)

the old Palmer design studio

So I am, if not done, at least very very close to done residing in the middle of campus in this quirky old building. I am completely moved in to my new office (sorry, not pictures). My daughter went with me to campus the other day to help me unpack in the office. My pens and scissors have never been so organized.

Palmer--I've always disliked that spindly tree thing

Next Wednesday I have invited some student volunteers to help unpack in the new clay studio. We have probably 60+ boxes waiting to be unpacked and put away. Some of them are still in Palmer, but I am anticipating they will be moved this week or early next week.

the new Palmer-Martin clay studio (wheel area)

Yesterday I walked around with post-it notes and identified where things should be stored. Unfortunately, there were some changes made in the original plans, so we may need to get creative in a few spaces. The space feels huge now, but we still have six ware carts, four sets of small shelves, and a slab roller to put away in this space.

the new Palmer-Martin clay studio (hand building area)

I anticipate that the biggest adjustment for me will be getting used to teaching across this yawning expanse of a room. Except now I think about it, this is probably comparable to or a little smaller than the undergraduate clay classroom I taught in during graduate school. It never seemed to be a problem.

the new Palmer-Martin clay studio (teacher area)

The accessible teaching station is pretty neat, too. I haven't played with the projector setup yet, but I did use the whiteboard for the first time (to write a note to my student helpers for next week).

the new Palmer-Martin glazing area

The glaze studio is certainly the biggest question mark for me. I am going from no glaze space to this beautiful glaze space, but the drawers are tiny. They were meant to hold 50lb bags of dry material and the sink spout was meant to be flexible so we could fill buckets without sticking them in the sink. Aw, stop complaining, Rachel. We'll see how it looks next week.

Palmer-Martin (picture from Bora Architecture)

1 comment:

  1. there are bound to be teething problems as you settle into the new space but how marvellous that the new space was built when so many pottery teaching are being closed.


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