The Mobile Literacy Arts Bus (MLAB) is an artist-run, renovated recreational vehicle that exists as a flexible space open to community members’ proposals for alternative educational and cultural programming.

MLAB is the collaborative effort of the 2007-2008 Social Sculpture class at Syracuse University, comprised of 10 art and architecture students and lead by artist and Director of Community Initiatives in the Visual Arts of Syracuse University, Marion Wilson. Our mission was to transform a used, 1984 Recreational Vehicle Bus into a Mobile Literacy and Arts Bus for use by the Syracuse City School District and the greater Syracuse Community. MLAB serves as a physical manifestation of Syracuse University’s Scholarship in Action initiative, by pairing University resources with community needs in an attempt to address the staggering drop out rates in the Syracuse City School District High Schools. Through the School of Education at Syracuse University, incredible curricula that bridge photography, poetry and literacy currently exist within the public schools-- however due to a crisis of space, the schools don't always have the space or resources to house it. MLAB is this space. The bus serves as a mobile classroom, digital photo lab, gallery space, and community center. As a team, we did it all: demolition, design, and construction.

MLAB is made possible from the generous support of the School of Education at Syracuse University and Entitiative.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Two comments on the most recent posts. I like the idea of the cushions having some sort of "correct" location although I'm not so sure about laser cutting it into the panel and what you're thinking of on that front Zach. I thought at some point we had mentioned the cushions being different colors? And possibly these different colors could correspond to locations on the bus where the pieces have been removed. Another option being discussed the other day was whether or not we should have some sort of embroidery or colors on the cushions themselves? This could be another option, where the embroidery on the cushions corresponds to the laser cut etching on the wall? Furthermore, I loved the idea of famous quotes by different authors being the way cushions matched to their storage spaces.
My second comment was on the electrolette posting. The discussion about the electrical lighting is that it is going to be located on the edges of the ceiling or top of the wall in recessed lighting fixtures. Taking that in mind it might be a good idea to centralize the main power source near the driver's seat. Also this could be designed to be accessible, if it required maintenance, from the cab of the RV. As for outlets, I still think that centralizing the power source would be a good decision because then we could decide to run the wiring down two spaces (similar to the way that the wiring is being run from the plug at the rear of the RV to the battery) and we could then just plug in the outlets where we need them. This would organize the wiring into just a few lines that run down the RV and minimize our need to change the design to allow for electrical. I think that's a good idea but if anyone else has other ideas please put them out there!


Zach said...

Could cables/electrical outlets etc. be contained in that 7" zone btw. 24" and 31" that we aren't really doing anything else with??

Roslyn said...

we would only be able to have different colored cushions if we used a different fabric. this one doesn't come in very pretty colors from what I understand.
We could still do the embroidery, I'm not sure how talented we are on the sewing machine if you're asking us to match something up to a laser cut image but we could give it a try.

M-Lab said...

What about if the cushions were in the more solid white vinyle material but there was a bin of some sort of colorful attachments that could be used to personalize the space once people arrived in the space -velcroed on or snapped - and then a digital photo was taken at the end of a usage of the space to archive the way it appeared - idea grew out of Samantha's and my conversations with MJJ>