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Art in the TLC

In an attempt to make the TLC a more lively and welcoming place, we have partnered with the students in Professor Brandon Morse’s HDCC208O Seminar in Digital Cultures and Creativity; Data, Sculpture, and Information Aesthetics to create these art installations throughout the space. These were from the Fall 2017 Semester. 

Interested in having your own artwork displayed in the TLC? Please email us at TLC@umd.edu

Jennifer Luu

The Terrapin Learning Commons is one of the most popular areas of McKeldin Library. Due its resources and collaborative learning environment, it is a basecamp for stressed out students to study for exams, work on group projects, or engage in other academic tasks. As one moves through the Terrapin Learning Commons, one may notice that some of the spaces seem constantly overcrowded. As a result, the spaces often emanates feelings of high anxiety in conjunction with the high noise levels. This piece utilizes headcount data of different parts of the Terrapin Learning Commons over the course of 12 hours. Rather than using the raw data, the data has been manipulated to reflect not only the amount of people in each of the areas, but the density of people in each of the areas. The rigid cube reflects the tightly enclosed space that is the Terrapin Learning Commons, and the yarn reflects the change of in the populous density over time. The billowing yarn spilling out of the cube is meant to reflect the overcrowded nature of some parts of the TLC.

Erin Engelbrecht

This piece visualizes the number of people who visited three different libraries across campus from 2014 through 2016. Each planet represents one year, and each ring represents a different library: the outermost ring is McKeldin Library, the middle ring is the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library, and the innermost ring is the Engineering and Physical Sciences Library.

I chose to present this data through planets and their rings. Just like how planetary rings are made of many small parts which orbit the planet, the total number of people who visit the libraries is made up of individuals whose lives revolve around the University of Maryland libraries. By showing multiple rings, it is possible to compare the three different libraries while still seeing that they are part of one larger system.

Olivia Turner

This piece is a data visualization of information collected by the John and Stella Graves MakerSpace in the Terrapin Learning Commons. The bottom level of the piece represents the number of 3D prints each month, separated by season. Each colored layers is one season (blue for winter, orange for fall, green for spring/summer), and each corner of the layer represents the data for one month.

The top level of the piece represents the number of unique users (blue), the number of requests per machine (green), and the daily distributions of requests (orange). Each corner represents a different machine: one of two 3D printers, a 3D scanner, or a vinyl cutter. I chose to make this piece using string to emulate the path of the 3D printer as it lays down filament, so that the piece is a true representation of the data.

Anthony Chung

For my data visualization project, I recorded the location of every person in the Terrapin Learning Commons including the number of people each person was working with. By mapping out this data as raised dots on a 2D plane, I was able to visualize which areas were most dense as well as most conducive to a group-working environment. This Braille-esque map was 3D printed and back-lit on top of a wooden box frame to illuminate the raised dots and allow them to be more discernable.

My original goal of this project was to create an interactive artwork that the audience could perceive through the sense of touch. This goal, as well as the Braille language, inspired me to create this palpable piece that uses light and touch to encourage a multisensory approach to interpreting the population data.

We Do Language by Jessica Morris

The Pulitzer Prize has been awarded annually since 1918 to “distinguished works of fiction by an American author,” and in nearly one hundred years of awards, nine of the recipients have been writers of color. This project physically represents quotes from three of these writers.

Center: “Now that my eyes opening, I feels like a fool.”-Alice Walker, The Color Purple, 1983 Winner

This project was placed in McKeldin Library because in an academic setting, students are often taught to leave their language at the door and speak and write in Standard Written English. Scholar Vershawn Ashanti Young challenges this, and explains: “What we need to do is enlarge our perspective about what good writin is and how good writin can look at work, at home, and at school.”

By physically placing this award-winning, non-standard language in the institution, We Do Language shows the importance of celebrating language.

We Do Language by Jessica Morris

The Pulitzer Prize has been awarded annually since 1918 to “distinguished works of fiction by an American author,” and in nearly one hundred years of awards, nine of the recipients have been writers of color. This project physically represents quotes from three of these writers.

Left: “‘Me siento contento cuando sufro,’ he sang one day, ‘I feel happy when I’m suffering.”-Oscar Hijuelos, The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love, 1990 Winner

This project was placed in McKeldin Library because in an academic setting, students are often taught to leave their language at the door and speak and write in Standard Written English. Scholar Vershawn Ashanti Young challenges this, and explains: “What we need to do is enlarge our perspective about what good writin is and how good writin can look at work, at home, and at school.”

By physically placing this award-winning, non-standard language in the institution, We Do Language shows the importance of celebrating language.

We Do Language by Jessica Morris

The Pulitzer Prize has been awarded annually since 1918 to “distinguished works of fiction by an American author,” and in nearly one hundred years of awards, nine of the recipients have been writers of color. This project physically represents quotes from three of these writers.

Right: “We are all worthy of one another.” -Edward P. Jones, The Known World, 2004 Winner

This project was placed in McKeldin Library because in an academic setting, students are often taught to leave their language at the door and speak and write in Standard Written English. Scholar Vershawn Ashanti Young challenges this, and explains: “What we need to do is enlarge our perspective about what good writin is and how good writin can look at work, at home, and at school.”

By physically placing this award-winning, non-standard language in the institution, We Do Language shows the importance of celebrating language.

Noise Towers by Andy Moon

Transformation of ambient noise waveforms into tangible structures. Each plywood tower represents Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from left to right. Through habituation, ambient noise eventually becomes mundane and insignificant to us. To represent these ambient noises in tangible structures, I recorded sound in the library for seven days. I then took the average of these amplitudes and plotted them out in a line graph. The line graph was then revolved to make a 3D shape as shown above.

Sarah Kang

This static clock represents the number of people that visit the McKeldin library, with each branch of the clock corresponding to a specific month of the year (12 o’clock branch represents December, etc). Longer branches illustrate higher populations, while shorter branches show lower populations. The color schemes were chosen based on the seasons. Upon analysis, this data sculpture becomes intuitive. The 1 o’clock branch, which represents the month of January, is short because most students are on winter break and are away from campus. Similarly, the 6, 7, and 8 o’clock branches are short because these represent the summer months. The months of April and October are typically when students have midterms, so this may explain why the 4 and 10 o’clock branches are the longest. This representation of the data as a clock allows the audience to see these changes in the library populations over time.

Dana Ge

After visiting Mckeldin library in the morning, I noticed how different the atmosphere was compared to during the evening. I observed the people there and became interested in what they were doing and how that affected the environment in the learning commons. Thus, I collected data of what people were doing, if they were working on a laptop, personal or borrowed, individually or in a group, and/or silently or while talking. I wanted to utilize the spacious windows and sunlight streaming through them, so I decided to layer colored acrylic squares to create something similar to a Venn diagram to display the behavior of people in Mckeldin and how many of them there were. Each different color of the squares represents a different category (purple: no computer; yellow: personal laptop; pink: borrowed computer; red: individual; blue: group; orange: silent; green: noise), and the overlap of the squares signifies the people that displayed both characteristics. I thought it would be interesting to see the common trends and how they differ from the morning to the evening. 

Dana Ge

After visiting Mckeldin library in the morning, I noticed how different the atmosphere was compared to during the evening. I observed the people there and became interested in what they were doing and how that affected the environment in the learning commons. Thus, I collected data of what people were doing, if they were working on a laptop, personal or borrowed, individually or in a group, and/or silently or while talking. I wanted to utilize the spacious windows and sunlight streaming through them, so I decided to layer colored acrylic squares to create something similar to a Venn diagram to display the behavior of people in Mckeldin and how many of them there were. Each different color of the squares represents a different category (purple: no computer; yellow: personal laptop; pink: borrowed computer; red: individual; blue: group; orange: silent; green: noise), and the overlap of the squares signifies the people that displayed both characteristics. I thought it would be interesting to see the common trends and how they differ from the morning to the evening. 

Melonee Quintanilla

When you look up the Terrapin Learning Commons (TLC) on the University Libraries page, one of the first  results is an option to reserve a group study room. As I explored the website, I was impressed by the  simple, effective grids telling me which rooms had already been reserved. Red squares on the grid meant  that the room was full, and the placement of these red squares relayed how long the room was going to be  occupied. This intuitive layout inspired me to create my project using the room reservation data.

Each acrylic panel represents a room, each row is a different action, and the twelve columns represent  twelve months. Each void with its red ink square corresponds to activity detected in the course of a month.  Just like my original inspiration, the busier the room, the more red squares there are. The translucency  and subtle engravings mimic the fading of this data with time. My project exhibits only a snapshot of the  ever-changing activity in the TLC, and will one day be as outdated as the physical books on the shelves.

January by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.

February by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.

March by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.

April by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.

May by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.

June by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.

July by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.

August by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.

September by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.

All Months by Anat Berday-Sacks

The posters installed on the space dividers in this room compare the electronic and analog library resources utilized through McKeldin Library. 3.45 million analog books, 1.2 million e-books, 17,000 e-journals, and a variety of equipment from the Terrapin Learning Commons are available here. Each poster represents the usage of these resources during a different month (January-September) of 2016. This Mondrian-inspired data visualization aims to clarify the breakdown. Each resource corresponds to a color: blue for analog books checked out, grey for TLC equipment, orange for e-books accessed, and yellow for e-journals accessed.