October 24, 2018 | Katherine Adams
The Alfred R. Neumann Library at University of Houston-Clear Lake is not exactly a “big name” art gallery, which is why on Nov. 5 at 5 p.m., it will be the location for very small art exhibition. “Honey I Shrunk the Art Show” will run through Nov. 29 and will display about 20 student, faculty, alumni, and local artists’ creations, none bigger than 3x3x3 inches. But, there’s no need to bring your magnifying glass to see the intricacies of the work.
“The show is themed ‘Making Everyday Things Small,’ but in this exhibition, reality meets the virtual world,” said Art School for Children Director David Moya. “We are providing virtual reality headsets so that when you look at the art with the naked eye, it’s tiny. But in the virtual world, those pieces of art are to scale. Some of them will be huge.”
Moya explained that the exhibition was a collaborative effort between the students submitting the art and Assistant Professor of Psychology Nick Kelling’s graduate students. Kelling is also program director of Human Factors, an interdisciplinary area of psychology that focuses on how to develop technology to be more user-friendly and ergonomic.
“My research looks at utilizing virtual reality and augmented reality to enhance educational and entertainment experience,” Kelling said. “Looking at the art in a full and small scale way is a unique way to combine the experience, both for the visitor and for the artist. The work is represented in two scales simultaneously. It’s a fun, unique way to exhibit art.”
Moya said he had the idea to try an exhibition involving technology because he is always seeking ways to incorporate technology into art. “My real agenda is to take this project, create interest for it, and create a classroom around it for the Art School for Children,” he said. “This exhibition is a way to play on versions of reality. There are no limits in the digital space.”
The library is located in UHCL’s Bayou Building, 2700 Bay Area Blvd., Houston. For more information about UH-Clear Lake’s Art School for Children, visit www.uhcl.edu/childrens-art-school. For more information about UHCL’s Human Factors program, visit https://www.uhcl.edu/academics/degrees/psychology-ms-applied-cognitive-psychology-concentration.