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Jun 21 2019 - 09:06 AM
Art & Multimedia Exhibitions at Teachers College - A Portfolio of Projects Created/Curated by EdLab Designers

EdLab Art Commissions

Art Commission Overview

Art Commissions | Overview

Statement of Purpose

EdLab is offering funding, exhibition space and support to artists who explore the intersections between education, technology, data, art, and media. The goal of EdLab Art Commissions is to create novel, meaningful, and transformative experiences in the context of a graduate school of education, health, and psychology. Selected artists complete multimedia art projects, which lead to public outcomes including installations and performances, seminars, public discussion, and publication.

With support from the Myers Foundations, EdLab will award selected artists up to $20,000 to collaborate on imaginative new work based on the concepts above. Artists will work alongside the EdLab design team to create art that impacts the community on campus, in New York, and beyond.

EdLab is also open to exhibiting and/or purchasing relevant existing work. Funding for existing work varies by project.

Background Information

EdLab was established at Teachers College in 2005 to advance education in the post-industrial age. Located within the Gottesman Libraries, EdLab is a research and development unit organized to support educational software development, media, design, educational consulting, and publishing. In addition to holding the largest collection of materials devoted to the educating professions, the Gottesman Libraries has developed a range of new services to meet the needs of students and faculty members interested in accessing and producing educational and research materials in multiple media.

See our list of Past Commissions for more information about the kinds of projects we have supported.

Please view the full Application Guide for additional information on developing a proposal.

Winter: Art Selections

Winter: Art Selections from the Teachers College Collections

Jan 16  2017-March 10 2017

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Winter is a season of recovery and preparation.

- Paul Theroux

This exhibition features the Teachers College Art Collection, including works from, the Federico Castellon Memorial Print Collection, the Ziegfeld Collection of International Children’s Art, and the Students of Arthur Wesley Dow Collection.

Winter can be a somber time in New York. The New Year arrives as icy wind drives people indoors. After the bustle and urgency of the holidays the coming months yawn ahead with the prospect of spring a distant glimmer.

In this exhibit, themes of stillness, nature, loneliness, simplicity and discomfort are presented together as a reminder that Winter is as valuable a time for growth and work as any other season.



Constructing a Praxis of Artist/Educator

December 18 - 20, 2018

What do we make as contemporary art now? Is there a gap between what we are making and what we are/will be teaching in studio art courses? How can we become both artists and educators? What would be effective art teaching preparation / pedagogy / practices? 

A collaborative exhibition showcasing artworks by studio art faculty around NYC, MFA students, as well as recent MFA graduates who are pursuing teaching in higher education. 

Curated by Dahye Kim.

When: December 18 - 20, 2018.

Where: The Smith Learning Theatre, Teachers College, Columbia University













Artwork descriptions can be found here.

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Floor plan


Mindful Lights

December 7, 2015 - February 6, 2016

Mindful Lights

Is an interactive installation exploring how light and material can create a space for students to experience a moment of mindfulness.


EdLab designers Veronica Black, Min Sung Kwak, Seungkyun Lee, and Jackie “Neon” Simon, examine the uses of LED (light-emitting diode) lighting and mixed materials to create a visual and spatial experience. The installation responds to movement with subtle color changes, signalling the viewer to slow down, reflect and find stillness in the midst of a busy and stressful time.



News Cafe Book Collections

Archived Displays & On Going Displays

Explore the archives of the News Cafe Book Collection by visiting this link


In Harmony with Dow

October 18 - December 23- 2016

In Harmony With Dow 

This exhibit drew from the Dow Collection from the Gottesman Archives and invited visitors to create their own versions of the work. Selected pieces were made into coloring sheets and coloring pencils were available at stations throughout the gallery.


This series of compositions was created by students of Arthur W. Dow while he was a professor in art education at Teachers College from 1904-1922. Heavily influenced by Japanese painting and woodblock printing, Dow taught art education that blended processes from 

Eastern and Western traditions, which was groundbreaking at the time. Dow encouraged his students to embrace viewing and producing art as a practice in their daily lives, not just as decoration for an exclusive audience. In his book Composition: A Series of Exercises in Art 

Structure for the Use of Students and Teachers, Dow identifies the elements of art as “the "putting together" of lines, masses, and colors 

to make a harmony.”

Similar to meditation, which is the practice of creating mindful inner-balance, coloring can bring about moments of tranquility in an otherwise frenetic environment. Anxiety in students has been shown 

to drop dramatically when they were given mandalas (circular patterns) 

to color, whereas freeform doodling had no effect on the subjects’ 

stress levels (Curry & Kasser, 2005). 


Students were invited to take coloring sheets created from works featured in the show and tweet @LibraryTC #DowShallColor. 


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Curry, N.A, and Kasser, T. (2005). Can coloring mandalas reduce anxiety? Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association, 22(2), 81-85.

We Are Here

March 3 - March 31 2017

We Are Here - Exhibit of Student Activism at Columbia and across the globe


Sign.png"We Are Here" was developed as a reflection on the history of student activism throughout the world, and it's powerful role in history. It sought to orient the visitor to their physical location in NYC, at Teachers College and Columbia, but also to their place in time, with a rich lineage of students enacting social and political change. 

The Design Team researched student activism both as it specifically related to Columbia University's history, and student activism across the globe and created two "Pillars of Strength" as display. Also included are some demographic statistics from the Teachers College office of student affairs as well as a map that highlights TC alumni who have since travelled to live and work abroad. 

Wearable buttons are fixed to the columns that students are encouraged to take with them. The buttons, classic emblems of resistance throughout history, feature the "We are Here" title and images of the Statue of Liberty, an icon of inclusion, immigration, freedom and our great city.


To download full sized images of the layout please click on the links below:

Column A

Column D


October 1, 2014 - June 1,2015

"Nestbuilders" is a site specific installation by Mark Reigelman II commissioned for the collaboration space of the Gottesman Libraries. Watch a short documentary about Nestbuilders on Vialogues and join the discussion:

Nests are pieces of natural architecture that function as incubators of growth and community. In their work, teachers create conditions where academic, social, and emotional development is fostered, respected, and cherished. Teachers are nest builders!

Nestbuilders is inspired by the nests of a bird commonly known as the Social Weaver. These nests house hundreds of birds and are oftentimes found colliding with man-made structures. Built on a hanging metal substructure and cladded in over 10,000 pieces of magnetically-attached stainless steel, Nestbuilders sits at the heart of the collaboration space of the Gottesman Libraries, where hundreds of teachers gather every day to engage in dialogue and advance learning.

Open to the public. Please enter campus at 525 West 120th street.

Exhibition dates: October 30th, 2014 - May 29th, 2015
Where: Gottesman Libraries, 2nd Floor

Nestbuilders was made possible by a generous gift from the Myers Trust.
For tweets about this exhibition, use #tcnestbuilders 

Staff Picks

Staff Picks Collection - On Going


Staff Picks is a rotating exhibit featuring books curated by the librarians at the Gottesman Libraries, displayed on the second floor of Russell Hall.

January-February 2019, Artists' Books: Dimensional Stories

November - December 2018, Homecoming/Coming Home

September - October 2018, Award-Winning Children's Books to Read Again and Again

July - August 2018, Dear Summer: Letters in Literature

June 2018, The School Building: Philosophy and Design

May 2018, How To Survive Being A Teenager

April 2018, From the Classroom to the Streets: 50 Years of School-Based Activism

March 2018, American Singers, American Song

January - February 2018, Survivors, Settlers and Assimilators: Transforming Jewish

December 2017,  Silver Anniversary Picture Books

November 2017, Ballot Boxing: Winning and Losing the Right to Vote

October 2017, The Common Thread

September 2017, Award Winning Children's Books to Read Again and Again

July - August 2017, Unconventional Beach Reads

June 2017, Pride Month

May 2017, Sea Creatures

April 2017, Earth Day

March 2017, Green Card Stories

January - February 2017, Animals are People Too by Devin McKnight

November - December 2016, At Home In Alternate Worlds

July 2016, The Theater

June 2016, Escapism

May 2016, Journeys

March 2016, Growth

Mid-November - December 2015, All About Art!

Bathroom DJ

Fall 2016 – Ongoing

Bathroom DJ allows people to create audio experiences curated specially for an event. The restrooms in the Learning Theater at Columbia University are able to be programed with different audio utilizing Audinate’s Dante networked sound system.

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Event PlayList: Campaign Playlists for Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump

Hillary Clinton                                                                                                                Donald Trump

Believer – American Authors                                                                               I Wanna Be Rich – Calloway

The Fighter – Gym Class Heroes                                                                       On My Own – Lee Salonga

Roar – Katy Perry                                                                                                       Mother’s Little Helper – The Rolling Stones

Stronger – Kelly Clarkson                                                                                      Tiny Dancer – Elton John

Happy – Pharrell Williams                                                                                      The Music of the Night – Phantom of the Opera

Wavin’ Flag – K’naan                                                                                                Let’s Spend the Night Together – The Rolling Stones

Pumpin Blood – Nonono                                                                                        Rolling in the Deep – Adele

Juntos – Juanes                                                                                                         Hey Jude – The Beatles

Let’s Get Loud – Jennifer Lopez                                                                        Turandot: Nessum dormal – Luciano Pavarotti

Wake Up Everybody – John Legend and the Roots                                We’re Not Gonna Take It – Twisted Sister

Best Day of My Life – American Authors                                                      You Can’t Always Get What You Want – The  Rolling Stones

Real Love – Mary J. Blige                                                                                      The Parachutes – Jerry Goldsmith

Vivir Mi Vida – Marc Anthony                                                                               Billionaire – Travie McCoy (feat. Bruno Mars)

Just One Love – Michael Bolton                                                                        Time is On My Side – The Rolling Stones

Brave – Sara Bareilles                                                                                             Memory – Original Cast of “Cats”

Freedom – Pharrell Williams                                                                                Eye of the Tiger – Survivor

Run Run Run – Jill Scott                                                                                        Revolution – The Beatles

Together – Demi Lovato (feat. Jason Derulo)                                              Sympathy for the Devil – The Rolling Stones

Fighters – Kris Allen                                                                                                 Rocket Man – Elton John

Fight Song – Rachel Platten                                                                                 Brown Sugar – The Rolling Stones

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Event PlayList: Distance Learning Playlists

Heavy Screen Time Rewires Young Brains, For Better And Worse: Link

Scholars Delve Deeper Into The Ethics Of Artificial Intelligence: Link

Collection of audio from hr of code: Link

Cartoon Network Gets Creative with Coding: Link

Chris Bosh Talks Computer Science: Link

From the Documentary Film Steve Jobs: Secrets of Life: Link

Made with Code + Starbucks: Coded Emoji Hot Chocolate: Link

Higher Ed: Graduation Advice to Our Younger Selves: Link

Music Lessons

February 8 - March 2016

Music Lessons An interactive kiosk featuring five episodes of 'Seen in NY' that focus on music education.


How does a tiny Mardi Gras Indian community in New Orleans pass its music on to future generations? Explore this question alongside other video explorations of music education in the Library's current exhibit.

Many distinctive, culturally-influenced approaches to the teaching and learning of music have become educational traditions. These traditions, while alive in silos across the world, are increasingly being blended and blurred in communities on the ground, especially as cross-generational and cross-cultural access to instruments, tools, and DIY educational experiences increase. This video series, inspired by the work of Teachers College educators and artists, explores the stories of music students and teachers and the lessons we can learn from them. Each video takes us through a unique learning experience: not always about music, but always through music.

Collaboration between the EdLab Design Team & Media Team

Selections from TC Collection

April 15, 2015 - August, 2015

Selections from the Gottesman Libraries Historical Art Collections

Gonzalo Obelleiro (curated) & Veronica Black (assistant curated)


What do Frederico Castellon (1914-1971), Arthur Wesley Dow (1857-1922), and Edwin Ziegfeld (1905-1983) all have in common? Respectively, there was an influential graphic artist, a leader in the American Arts and Crafts movement, and first president of the National Arts Education Association … significantly, world-class artist-teachers and prominent members of the faculty of Teachers College, Columbia University.

Come see a fine selection of works from the Gottesman Libraries' historical art collections to explore concepts and threads in art and the teaching and learning of art throughout the first half of the twentieth century. Painting, drawing, print, or collage, you'll experience changing patterns and sequences of work done by child, youth, adult. 

Amber's Photo Show

August 31 - October 23, 2015

Learning Captured

A collection of photographs by Amber Collins-Parnell explores the presence of art and individuals on Columbia University's Morningside campus. As students, faculty, and staff rush from one activity to the next, it is easy to move through campus without paying attention to objects, feelings, intentions, and manifestations of culture in the midst of other spaces designed specifically for learning. These spaces can be transformative, even if they are often temporary. By better understanding them, can we meaningfully influence campus culture and expand opportunities for learning?

Collins-Parnell is an undergraduate student at the University of Chicago studying Visual Arts. She joined the Gottesman Libraries staff last summer as part of our Summer Internship program.


Historic Portraits

Restored Oil Paintings -- March 21 - June 6, 2016

The Teachers College Historic Portraits are part of a collection depicting faculty and significant figures from TC’s past. With generous support from the Myers  Foundation, the artwork has been masterfully restored by Chelsea Restoration Associates, and is now gathered together for the first time for public viewing.

Confronting Tradition

February 3 - 12, 2016

Confronting Tradition: Artworks by Wang Chuan & Yao Lu Yu Ding

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As we look toward the Year of the Red Monkey, Chinese New Year, 2016, Confronting Tradition presents the artworks of two Chinese artists, Wang Chuan and Yao Lu. They show how different approaches to our reconnections with reality lie both in tradition, and in activating the knowledge and imagination of reality.

The exhibited works are part of "Fantastic Art China 2015", a concomitant large scale expo of different mediums that represents 118 countries and regions and 321 cities.

Confronting Tradition is co-curated by the design staff of Edlab and Yadi Liu, doctoral student in Art and Art Education at Teachers College, Columbia University.



September 14 - October 9, 2015


It is the students, faculty and alumni of an institution that truly demonstrate its legacy. Teachers College has been committed to an expansive, innovative view of learning for over 125 years. Its community members have contributed to the development of education not only in New York City, but throughout the world.

What does this legacy look like? What does successful teaching and research look like? Changemakers is a video series that explores these questions. Each episode tells the story of one exemplary member of the TC community who shows us what perseverance and creativity look like in action.

The videos in this exhibit are also featured online.



Collaboration between the EdLab Design Team & Media Team

News Frontpage Display (Sedna)

September 2, 2016 -- On Going

Need to keep current, look to the past, teach a topic? The Everett Cafe features daily postings of news from around the world, and also promotes awareness of historical events from an educational context. 

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To Learn more about January 2017 News Display here.

To Learn more about December 2016 News Display here.

To Learn more about November 2016 News Display here.

To Learn more about October 2016 News Display here.

To Learn more about September 2016 News Display here.

Learning Spaces

March - April 2015

Exhibition: Learning Spaces

Learning, as all experience, always takes place in the context of a physical environment. Different spaces are conducive to different kinds of learning experiences. While human possibilities are as wide as the varieties of places we inhabit, formal learning has been traditionally confined to a limited set of narrowly conceived types of space—the traditional classroom, the chemistry lab, the art studio, the gymnasium. Powerful, enriching, and transformative learning experiences, however, take place beyond these spaces. 


Collaboration between the EdLab Design Team & Media Team

The Learning Spaces Exhibit is a series of videos produced by New Learning Times on the learning possibilities that take place beyond traditional, formal, educational spaces. The five videos feature a diverse set of spaces designed for learning ranging from high-tech buildings to stripped down natural environments: Artists learning in and from nature in the Grand Canyon, a school made almost entirely of bamboo in Bali, a museum that uses augmented reality to teach science in Philadelphia, a school in Boulder inspired by the philosophy of Reggio Emilia, and an experimental media and performing arts center designed to bring the arts, sciences, and technology together in Upstate New York. 

This video series is an invitation to rethink the possibilities of education as we reimagine the spaces where learning happens here at TC. 

Where: Gottesman Libraries Kasser Exhibition Space
When: March 9 through April 24. 

Portraits of Power

Feb.19 - March. 12, 2018

Portraits of Power: Presidential Portraiture from Reagan to Trump by Adam Tramantano

A Presidents Day exhibits at the Gottesman Libraries!

YMEJ Popup Exhibit (Lalitha)

May 11 - 15, 2015

Youth, Multiliteracies, & educational Justice (Un)Final Projects

Project Team

Tara Conley: Doctoral student, CMLTD, Teachers College, Columbia University

Lauren Gunn: Doctoral student, English Education, Teachers College, Columbia University

Kristine Rodriguez Kerr: Postdoc, CMLTD, Teachers College, Columbia University

Joe Riina-Ferrie: Doctoral student, CMLTD, Teachers College, Columbia University

Yolanda Sealey-Ruiz: Assistant Professor of English Education, Teachers College, Columbia University

Lalitha Vasudevan: Associate Professor of Technology and Education, Teachers College, Columbia University

Melissa Wade: Court Improvement Project Liaison, New York County Family Court

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2015 #YMEJ exhibition incorporates an emphasis on multiliteracies, which has been at the center of our inquiries as we engaged with the lives of young people involved in the foster care and juvenile justice systems. Embedded in their institutional experiences are a range of other forces that have informed our own understandings about surveillance, justice, and education in these young people's lives, as well as the creative capacities that are brought forth when we create the conditions that allow their literacies and practices of possibility to ourish.

Visit the YMEJ website for more information.

Transformations of Text/Colorsong

February 9 - March 27, 2015

Transformations of Text: Artworks by Susan Ruth Cohen

Susan Ruth Cohen-Small is a visual artist, art educator, and current student in the TC Art and Art Education Ed.M. (expected 2015) program. She holds an M.F.A and permanent New York State teacher certification in Art, and is a Teaching Artist and museum Educator for the Queens Museum. She also works as a Field Supervisor of student teachers for the TC Art & Art Education department. Susan originally created Colorsong in 2010 and then created a re-interpretation of the text and the Transformations of Text series for her independent study project at Teachers College in the fall of 2014.

Play Table

3D Scanning and Modelling

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Click Link Here  --> File : Resource Sheet.pdf

Object Oriented Programming

Play Table _ OOP_PDF_Image-01.jpgFile : Play Table _ OOP_PDF.pdf

The Art of Living

Spring 2018 / The Art of Living

For the Meyers Art Commission of 2017, israeli artist and design Ziv Schneider presented to us The Art of Living, an interactive exhibition in which she reimagines the course “Household Arts for Students from Other Lands” taught at Teachers College in 1923.




With it, Schneider presents the rendered model of the “National Better Home”– a model home built by the U.S. government to educate Americans about homemaking and homeownership. Schneider, who came to the U.S. as an international student herself,  is here reversing her role and casting her avatar-self as the teacher/trainer for this guided experience. She is the one instructing us on things like how one should decorate their home and the acceptable way to clean oneself.  All her answers are based on what educators at the time thought we should and should not do to live a proper American life.



The work exemplifies the famous quote attributed to scientist George Box, “All models are wrong, but some are useful.” The model, in our case, the house, exists purely for the sake of pedagogy. The “National Better Home” was designed to be a segue to “real life,” and as such it optimizes usability and allows “learning by doing”. Now, in its new virtual form, the model allows participants to make new sense of environments that no longer exist. The game-like narrative and user interaction allows us to experiment in order to better understand the systems in which we operate and the objects that occupy our world.  
Schneider’s version of the course is a copy of a copy, what  Baudrillard called “a simulacrum to the second power.” As a virtual interpretation of an idealized place, this art asks us to examine our nostalgia for a prototypical American home.

Ziv Schneider, b. 1984, Israel , is an artist and designer working with emerging technologies as a medium for nonfiction storytelling.

EdLab's Design Team was responsible for the design of the exhibition and supporting material including posters, signage, plynths, wooden floorplans and iPad docks.










Composing a City: What's Your Landscape?

Offit Gallery, Summer 2018

Art Lies in the fine choice. The artist does not teach us to see facts: he teaches us to feel harmonies.

-Arthur Wesley Dow

Banner_working-02.pngSearching through the Federico Castellon, Ziegfeld and Dow Collections housed in the archives of the Gottesman Libraries, we found that a common ground between them: landscapes. There's no better time than the promise of summer to explore the nature of the landscape and how we relate these varying terrains.

“Composing a City” consists of selected pieces from the Teachers College Archive. These pieces, taken from the Dow, Ziegfeld, and Frederico Castellon collections, depict  scenes of urban life. Urban populations contribute to  a city’s  aesthetic and identity by providing an eclectic combination 

of elements based on social, cultural, political, and economic needs. Although the elements that outline identity of a city may change, the need for organization or balance makes its landscape a composition, a concept that was spread by the former head of  Teachers College art department, Arthur Dow.  Dow published the influential book “Composition” in 1899, stressing harmonization by 

manipulating line, color, and tonal relationships 

within a composition. The book was not only used by Teachers College students at the turn of the 20th century, but across the nation due to the widespread influence of Teachers College, especially among American modernist painters. 

City identities are often represented by their landscapes. Consider the iconic skylines of New York City, Chicago, or San Francisco,  where each landscape contains different arrangements of line, color, and tonal representation that reflect their unique identities. Harmony within a city is represented in these compositions of landscapes, but there is more to be seen between the lines. According to Dow’s theory on composition, harmony is achieved in composition when it is counterbalanced by disharmonies. Cultural disharmonies such as low socioeconomic status can bring negative outcomes including overcrowding, lack of resources, and high mortality rates. This exhibit explores the balances, identities and relationships between landscapes and the life within.

When looking at the different artworks, think about how each artist organized and balanced certain elements to compose a landscape. Which pieces provide a sense of harmony or balance to your lifestyle and personality? What’s your landscape?



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                                 Flume, Apolloscape, Untitled                                                                 Untitled, Walden, Gazelles


Dalmatia, Chimneys, The Stronger Substance, Untitled        Zulu Kraal, The Great Moon Trip, Dyed Etching, Salute of Guns



          Along Ossuary Streets, a Blind Man Taps His Cane                                                         Yellow Traveler



Composing a City

What's Your Landscape


Composing A City developed from the simple task of finding a theme amongst three different collections, Federico Castellon, Ziegfeld, and Dow Collections from Teachers College’s (TC) Art Archive. This task required sifting through about 300 works of art to find a theme for the Offit Gallery for the summer.


We digitally sifted through the collections on Pocket Knowledge and created about four quick theme ideas prior to physically going through the archives. Most of the theme ideas involved celebrating Professor Arthur Dow’s, a former professor of the Arts Department at TC.

Arthur Dow’s is best known for his theory of composition where finding harmony requires balancing line, mass, and color, highlighted in his book Composition. The artworks were organized per wall based on color, artistic style, and themes. His theory of composition was celebrated through a collection of his students’ artwork at Teacher College from 1914 to 1916.

After physically going to the archives, it was realized only certain pieces were framed for the Dow collection, requiring us to go back to developing a theme that would work with framed selected artworks.The process of developing the theme required sifting through the three collections twice. After sifting through the second time, we realized that we could still apply Dow’s compositional theory of harmony with the selected artworks.

After going through each collection two times, there was a commonality of various landscapes and city life across the collections. Once the theme of landscapes and city life emerged, we went through the collections a third time to take pictures of all artworks that fit under the theme. The selected works that fit the theme were scanned a few times to make a cohesive final selection and then the exhibit was digitally arranged per wall.

Counter wall comparison

The first two works show the physical and representational layers that develop culture (reality) for a society and composition (art practice) for a landscape. They were chosen for the entrance based on mass, color, and character. The first two were balanced in finding harmony by using a monochrome artwork contrasting it with an eye-catching yellow. (see below)

Wall 1

The first wall was organized based on color and people being included in the composition. The wall explores the different perspectives people can exist within an urban space, or community, from traditional, futuristic, market, and leisure viewpoints. (see below)

Wall 2

Often when thinking about movement we think about people doing or creating, but what about how movement adds to the spaces of habitation. The second wall balances different tones of color landscapes with the sky. All of the artworks include a sky that adds to the character of the composition. There are different interpretations of a sky within a landscape including tropical, industrial, and rural, iterations of landscapes and environments of habitation. Ways of living can include tropical, cluttered, spacious, or simple. Also, most of the artworks contain a sweeping motion alluding to wind and movement in the sky. (see below)

Wall 3

The third wall includes vegetation and nature, involving artworks that show vegetation as either isolated, spread out, or cohabited with animals. Artistically, the compositional balance occurred with balancing black and white, variations of green with negative space, and colorful geometric abstractions with recognizable shapes. (see below)

Wall 4

The fourth wall addresses desert landscapes depicting landscapes of the earth (rock, clay, or dust) and the impact of the process (human and natural) over time (clay homes or sedimentary rocks). Also, the color is limited on this wall mostly consisting of a spectrum of off whites to browns. Other colors were used to balance the artwork and center the eye. (see below)

Engagement Activity

To make the exhibit more engaging we included a process for people to sift through the images as well to find the artwork that was most harmonious to the viewer. People are able to take a sticker and place it under the artwork(s) they choose.

The engagement activity remained simple due to the short period of working time. Although simple, the activity can be considered impactful because it gives a physical representation of subjectivity when looking at art and thinking about harmony. The activity also requires people to engage with most to all of the works because they have to choose their favorite out of the selected 16 artworks. (see below)

Design Theme Generation

All of the exhibit content contains bars/lines to the design, addressing the multiple layers often used to build a landscape or build a culture and a community. Also, the lines symbolize how urban cities often exist on a grid of some sort.


This process brought out the importance of organization, looking more than once, and finding harmony amongst things that are loosely connected. Line, mass, and color were also qualities that were important in Composing A City exhibit. Also, as artists translating what I see into the design was important. For example, understanding how a landscape is composed across art mediums was important when developing the design theme for the exhibition.

Also, the data that would be collected over the summer about which artworks were the most harmonious to people will also provide quantitative data about who was on the third floor and what their perception of harmony and style entail. This data could inform another project or it could build upon.


The observation of impact is ongoing but while installing, and after, people have stopped to digest the images and ask questions about the work. In addition to people’s interest, the collaborative effort of others engaging may provoke those less likely to engage to contribute too. It seems that it makes someone's trip to the third-floor bathrooms a quest to operationalize harmony for themselves. And that short quest may inform them of what type of space, or artistic style, is conducive to maintaining harmony within the physical and metaphorical layers of a city.

Knowing Together

Fall 2018 / Knowing Together

Knowing Together is an experiment in collaborative photography and the expression of embodied experience in three-dimensional art. Rosalie Yu uses 3D capturing techniques to explore the limits of perception and memory, to reflect upon archiving practices, to transform everyday experience through rituals, and to interrogate the process of capturing depth in photography.

"Knowing Together" began with a workshop in late September where the artist and a group of strangers learn photogrammetry, a technique for creating 3D models of objects by combining photographs from multiple angles. The group formed a circle and passed around a camera to progressively capture a 3D image as the two strangers embrace platonically for the duration of the scan. Each embrace is 3D printed and exhibited as a sculpture. The entire group is credited as creators of these sculptures, which are displayed alongside raw captured images, video footage, and other source materials from the creation of these sculptures.

This exhibited is commissioned by the Myers Fund through Edlab at Teachers College, Columbia University, displayed at Offit Gallery, Third Floor, Thursday, 12/6 - Monday, 2/25

Knowing Together Exhibition at Offit Gallery

Knowing Together Book

Knowing Together Sculptures


March 1 - April 18, 2019

This exhibit pictures work of Dr. Nicole Avery - a former TC student with a masters degree in education and a doctorate in art & art education.

The photographs exhibit faces from the artist's community - each piece is prophetic in its own right extending the Artist's dissertation research, which denudes unwitting silencing of the black female artist by the dominant voice of society based on interminable perceptions of the black female body given America’s portrait of the black female in media, film and other art forms.

As Dr. Avery puts herself: "This show presents the ascendancy of female melanin across hues. Embued with fortitude, pulchritude, and perspicacity, she is unapologetically black... given breath by the women celebrated in Marvel’s recent Black Panther movie."

From Negative to Positive

April 19 - May 30, 2019

From Negative to Positive is an exhibition comprised of black and white film photographs shining a light on the life of Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Joseph (CSJ) in their motherhood in Brentwood, New York. It hopes to raise awareness how CSJ fosters unity and reconciliation while continuing to accomplish their mission of education and social justice through the hands of others.

The exhibition photographer and artist is Carolina Cambronero Varela, who is also a student at Teachers College.


June 4 - August, 2019

“Reflections” takes work from three art collections (Dow, Castellon, and Ziegfeld), in the Gottesman Library archive, that has been selected for their connection and counterpoint to each other. The exhibit is inspired by Alice in Wonderland, the recent film Us, and the principles of art therapy. “Reflections” was curated by members of the library staff to examine the art of the library in new ways.

The method of selection for artwork relied on the idea of reflecting, or similarities, in style, medium, and themes within the artwork. On the left side of the Offit gallery, the artworks contain color while artworks on the opposite side are monochrome. The theme is also represented in the style of the banner, description, and plaques for the artwork by using mirrors and mirroring to represent the exhibit title and concept.

Wall 1 in OFFIT

Wall 2 in OFFIT

Wall 3 in OFFIT


Welcome to the Library(OFFIT)

Summer - Fall, 2019

Curated by the Design Team, Welcome to the Library provides a colorful introduction to the spaces and resources available at the Gottesman Libraries of Teachers College, Columbia University. Complete with pop up book, visitors can learn how the library works, access resource information, and view past creative projects.


The Gottesman Libraries is one of the nation's largest and most comprehensive research libraries in education. The scope of the collections reflects the historic commitment to advanced study in education, psychology, and the health professions in their local, national, and international dimensions.


The Library houses about 950,000 printed volumes of scholarly materials, such as monographs, curriculum materials, and publications of educational agencies. In recent years, the Library has added a wide range of visual and digital formats, and has hosted many learning and teaching events.


Library Pop-up Book(Floor Plans)






Wide View





Through Our Eyes

October 17 - November, 2019

The Samos ‘hot spot’ camp is a detention center for asylum seekers crossing into the EU from Turkey. Since the EU-Turkey Deal in 2016, all asylum seekers found in Greek waters are detained in hotspot camps in Lesvos, Samos, Chios, and Kos. The Samos camp is a repurposed military base that was built for 650. However today the camp and the olive groves surrounding it (“the jungle”) are home to over 4,000 men, women and children from more than 15 countries.

Behind the camera, instead of reporters or journalists, we find teenage boys and girls who have been living in this camp for months. The young photographers are students at the Mazi youth center, the only educational option for them on the island, run by the NGO Still I Rise. Founded in June 2018, Mazì provides informal education and psychosocial support for children aged 12 to 17 living in the camp. Students involved in “Through our eyes” participated in the Mazì photography workshop which began in December 2018. The class, run by Nicoletta Novara, an experienced photojournalist and long-term educator at the school, is made of 7 modules: history of photography, portrait, movement, using light(s), black and white, street photography and editing. At the end of the workshop, students were given a disposable Kodak camera, and the assignment of showing their daily life outside of Mazì.

The result is “Through Our Eyes”, where students put what they learned in class into practice, while giving their personal interpretation to the assignment. These photos were all taken using techniques from their weekly photograph class. They show us the daily reality and the emotional struggles of children trapped at the edge of Europe, at the mercy of geopolitical negotiations that take no account of their need to survive, to learn, to flourish and grow. We believe this is the most concrete and tangible way of bringing attention to an impossible and inhumane situation that needs to change, now, and of letting students show us their world through their own eyes.

Many of the individuals and families depicted in these photos have fled political persecution and violent conflict in their homelands, all thus all the images in this particular exhibition have been selected to preserve individuals' anonymity.

For more information, please check

Where We're From

December 5, 2019 - February 16, 2020

"Carry-outs are an active fight against displacement just through their very existence.”

As Modele Oyewole once stated in Complex magazine, “America may run on Dunkin’, but the heart of Washington D.C. beats to Chinese carryouts.” For decades, carry-outs have been a staple in urban cities like Washington, DC and Brooklyn, NY, creating a hub for young, Black kids to eat or hang-out.

In Washington, DC specifically, carry-outs have become cultural landmarks in Black neighborhoods. However, as the city continues to experience high rates of displacement within majority Black neighborhoods, not only are carry-outs at stake, but so is DC’s title as a Chocolate City. As a result, "Where We’re From" specifically aims to protect these culturally-rich infrastructures from gentrification through a curated photographic journey of belonging, reminding us that infrastructures may disappear, but an individual’s story and experience may never be forgotten.

Tia Dorsey is an artist, curator, and photographer from Washington, DC. Dorsey is currently in her second year of her master’s program in arts administration at Teachers College, Columbia University. Her work, including the black & white photography series, what once was, focuses on dismantling preconceived notions regarding the presence of black bodies in changing spaces that were originally shaped by and for them. Ultimately, Dorsey aims to protect these spaces through her work, culminating in a master’s thesis that is designed to serve as a call to action for the proper preservation of localized black culture. 

Nayion Perkins is a content strategist from Washington D.C., who graduated from West Virginia University in May 2018, majoring in Journalism with a minor in Communications. Nayion holds a diverse background in media that includes working for newspapers, radio stations, and independent publications. His various creative roles include writer, layout editor, social media strategist, content curator, press fellow and designer. Additionally, he works as a clothing designer, social media strategist and event planner for his co-founded brand “The Pack.”

Chinese Calligraphy Club Artists include:

  • Xinyuan Zhu
  • Wuyue Chen
  • Ziwei Cheng
  • Jingyi Wang
  • Yumeng Zhang
  • Jingyi Pan
  • Qianhe Ji
  • Fei Wang
  • Juye Wang
  • Wen Lei

This exhibit is presented by Student Advocates for the Arts in partnership with the Office of the Vice President for Diversity and Community Affairs, the Office of Student Affairs, and the Arts Administration Program.

Selections from the Mary Adelaide Nutting Collection

February 26 - April 24, 2020

Welcome to an exhibition of selections from the Mary Adelaide Nutting Collection from Gottesman Libraries archive. 

This selection is being displayed in honor of a recent gift of two antique nursing caps belonging to TC alumni Dr. Rachel Louise McMannus to the collection by her family.

Teachers College was the first academic setting to offer Nursing Education, which began in 1899. Mary Adelaide Nutting was one of the founders of the National League of Nursing Education and of the original course for graduate nurses at Teachers College, Columbia University.

In 1907, in recognition of Miss Nutting's outstanding ability as a leader and administrator in the field of nursing education, she was called from her position as director of the Johns Hopkins Hospital School of Nursing, in Baltimore, to be the first professorial chair of Nursing Education in Teachers College or any other university. The four volume History of Nursing written jointly by Miss Nutting and Miss Lavinia Dock is still considered the authoritative work on this subject. During the first World War, as chairman of the Nursing Committee appointed by President Woodrow Wilson, Miss Nutting left a brilliant record of swift and efficient organization to increase the supply of nurses and co-ordinate their services. In 1921, in recognition of Miss Nutting's conspicuous service to nursing education and public health, she was awarded an honorary Master of Arts degree by Yale University. In 1944, Nutting was awarded a medal in her name, presented by the National League of Nursing.

In the international field, she was active in the founding and work of the International Council of Nurses. She is honorary president of the Florence Nightingale International Foundation which, since 1934, has conducted a course in London for graduate nurses from all parts of the world. During her work and travels in aide of nursing education, Mary Adelaide Nutting amassed an extensive collection of nursing-related objects, artifacts and texts from around the world. She was particularly interested in memorabilia connected to Florence Nightingale, who pioneered modern nursing practices and education.

This collection reflects some of her most interesting treasures, housed here at the Gottesman Libraries Archive. Since so many of the objects are delicate, in addition to photographs, physical reproductions have been made for viewers to handle.

This exhibit also celebrates the Year of the Nurse / Midwife and the 200 anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale. Be sure to check out the interview with Kathleen O'Connell, Isabel Maitland Stewart Professor of Nursing Education at Teachers College, Columbia University.

|By: Zoe Logan|631 Reads