SCAET building at Sheridan's Trafalgar Road Campus

Sheridan Glass Students Light Up Hazel McCallion Campus

Dec 20, 2011

A team of 32 students from Sheridan’s Craft and Design – Glass program has created a stunning installation for the college’s Hazel McCallion Campus

For Immediate Release: December 20, 2011
Mississauga, Ontario

A team of 32 students from Sheridan’s Craft and Design – Glass program has created a stunning installation for the college’s Hazel McCallion Campus in Mississauga, which recently celebrated its official opening. Entitled “Aurora Borealis”, the installation features approximately 2200 glass tubes cut to varying lengths and suspended from the ceiling in undulating curves.

By day, the piece is designed to exploit the natural light afforded by the 2-storey windows that frame it on two sides in the triangular space – a common area of the building. By night, the piece becomes alive with colour – an effect achieved by taking real time video camera images of people moving in the space, transferring them into coloured impressions and projecting them on to the suspended glass tubes.

Sheridan Glass Students Light Up Hazel McCallion Campus 

The impetus for the installation came about through Sheridan College’s decision to base its new facility on the creative campus concept. Students from the Crafts and Design program were invited to submit design proposals to create works for permanent installation in the Hazel McCallion Campus. The “Aurora Borealis” team of 32 students came together from all three years of the Glass program, along with select faculty, as construction on the building was getting underway. After viewing architectural drawings, the group collectively developed the concept for the installation.

Preparation for the installation took months of work by the team, who tackled the project over and above their own academic and studio work. One student, Alex Wilson, says “I helped build the scale model, helped figure out how to light it, worked on the frame in our studio, sand-blasted 300 or so tubes, got a scissor lift license to help hang the tubes, and worked every day on the assembly”, which took three full days.

Koen Vanderstukken, the Glass Studio head and an accomplished glass artist in his own right, describes the finished product as ”the culmination of a unique learning experience and a fantastic team effort. Through the combination of research, skill, creativity and lots of dedication, students and staff succeeded in creating an installation that speaks to everybody’s imagination.”

The glass tubes were donated by Gerresheimer, a company specializing in advanced glass and plastic products, while the frame for the installation was sponsored by George Whitney and Armo Tool.

About Sheridan:

Sheridan College serves 17,000 full-time and 35,000 continuing education students at campuses in Oakville, Brampton and Mississauga. Sheridan offers an innovative learning environment celebrated for academic excellence, applied research and creativity. Program options range from one-year certificates to four-year Bachelor’s degrees, in the arts, business, community service and technology fields. The Crafts and Design program offers intensive, hands-on instruction in ceramics, textiles, furniture and glass. The Glass program is one of the oldest and most esteemed glass design instruction programs in North America, and has been a leader in the discipline for over forty years.

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