Politics of Space | Sheridan’s Public Creativity Studio

January 10 – March 15, 2019


Curated by: Clair Fang, Melissa Merante, Rima Sarhan and Erison Xu

What is public creativity? How do spaces build community while respecting diverse abilities and identities? A group of 11 Sheridan arts students explored these concepts this past summer through a Work Integrated Learning (WIL) opportunity with Sheridan’s Public Creativity Studio, led by Sheridan’s Faculty of Animation, Arts and Design with assistance from Sheridan’s

Cooperative Education (Co-op) Department and the Creative Campus Galleries.

Over 14 weeks, students worked on designs and prototypes for the SCAET building at the

Trafalgar Road Campus. With its proximity to transit stops, and the Sheridan “S” prominently displayed outside its doors, some consider the SCAET building to be the “unofficial” main

entrance to the Trafalgar Campus, which made it the perfect location for a creative reimagining.

The Art Gallery of Mississauga partners with the project to present a gallery installation of this inquiry: Politics of Space. From moss walls to mobility, from the aesthetics and architectures of brand and liability, Politics of Space considers what it means to meet the needs of care for bodies moving in and out of institutional place.

The project was funded by the Career Ready Fund, a grant provided by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU). Participating students were: Interior Design students Rima Sarhan and Erisen Xu; Interaction Design students Matthew Mirski, Katlin Walsh, Chaz Escoffery, Long Vu Ta, and Luigi Nicastro; Craft and Design; Furniture student Melissa Merante; Illustration students Erina Chida and Andrew Presutto; and Photography student Clair Fang.

For the first seven weeks, students worked under the mentorship of Sheridan faculty Susan Beniston, Sherry Lawr and Cheryl Vallender. For the final seven weeks of the project, students worked with guest artist jes sachse, whose work focuses on public/private space, and how multi-abled bodies move within those spaces.

STUDENT ARTISTS: Luigi Nicastro, Clair Fang, Andrew Presutto, Long Vu Ta, Matthew Mirski, Erisen Xu, Chaz Escoffery, Erina Chida, Rima Sarhan, Katlin Walsh, Melissa Merante, and Clair Fang.

FACULTY FACILITATORS: Susan Beniston, Sherry Lawr  and Cheryl Vallender

GUEST ARTIST: Jes sachse

Banner image: Artwork: Andrew Presutto and Erida China; Photograph: Clair Fang