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Science and Design Collaboration Project Comes to NC State

Scientists and designers come from different backgrounds. But a new project at NC State is melding those diverse viewpoints into engaging projects that celebrate creativity and human ingenuity.

The Leading Strand initiative, founded by award-winning neuroscientist-turned-designer and TED speaker Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya, pairs scientists and designers to co-create works of art that translate research in rigorous and visually compelling ways. Faculty and students from across the College of Sciences are pairing up with teams from the College of Design to produce projects in a variety of creative formats around the theme “Invisible Worlds: Bringing the Unseen Into Focus.” The projects will be showcased in a public exhibition at the end of the spring semester.

Phingbodhipakkiya, who is a visiting faculty member at NC State this semester, was the speaker at the College of Sciences’ inaugural Crossroads Series talk in fall 2017. She will work with each team regularly to facilitate their collaborative process.

“NC State has vibrant scientific research, strong design education and a rich interdisciplinary culture, making it the perfect place to launch the second cohort of this unique project,” said Phingbodhipakkiya.

The following faculty from the College of Sciences and College of Design will be leading teams of collaborators.

Sciences Lead: Katie Mack, Physics
Design Lead: Tania Allen, Art + Design
Focus: Dark matter

Sciences Lead: Lisa Paciulli, Biological Sciences
Design Lead: Emil Polyak, Art + Design
Focus: Behavior and vocalizations of aye-ayes

Sciences Lead: Gavin Williams, Chemistry
Design Lead: Pat Fitzgerald/Lee Cherry, Art + Design
Focus: Designer microbes that create synthetic antibiotics

Sciences Lead: David Papp, Mathematics
Design Lead: Emil Polyak, Art + Design
Focus: Mathematical methods for optimizing radiation therapy delivery to cancer patients

Sciences Lead: Karen Daniels, Physics
Design Lead: Sara Queen, Architecture
Focus: Soft condensed matter and force networks

Sciences Lead: Lex Kemper, Physics
Design Lead: Victoria Chi, Graphic Design
Focus: Condensed matter physics

This post was originally published in College of Sciences News.