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, November 3, 2007

For those at Dartmouth or in other non-RV locations

Intense work has been taking place! Though I cannot speak for the work that was done on Friday, I can report on some of Saturday's activities!

So far, we've managed to rewire the RV and add some lights and outlets. David made sure to select lighting that demonstrated our sleek white look reflecting properties of liminality. We've also added a space heater for future cold hands who will be working in the space. Note on the coldness: expanding foam insulation will not expand when cold.

Later in the day we picked up quite a bit of wood from Stickley. Zach and Marion provided great entertainment for those who were able to watch them back into the sculpture driveway space with large trailer of wood in tow. After we continued making stratified floor boards. This happened to be my favorite task.

And though it may be less of a surprise, we made our ritual trip to Home Depot in order to pray to the gods of fabrication and design or to buy liquid nails and other such supplies. We now have a beautiful caulking gun that can handle our 29 oz. containers of ammunition.

Leveling of the RV also took place, I think, but as I was not directly involved in that, I'll let the real heroes post about it.

More work will be done tomorrow and it should be really exciting!

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