Esteban Garcia’s work is inspired by the intersection of art and technology. To him, the two disciplines are not separate, they are forever connected. Leonardo DaVinci’s drawings, for example, inspired future flying machines. And Bell Research Labs helped develop digital photography and cell phones as part of research projects without end goals.“The tradition of technological innovation through artistic experimentation still remains today,” Garcia says. That goes for his courses, as well. Garcia teaches technical concepts while exposing his students to emerging technologies. And in the field of computer graphics, new technologies are always emerging. As part of the Shape Lab he is creating new course experiences in interactive art and design, code-based visualization, and human-computer interaction. “The curriculum would be more flexible to adapt rapidly to social and technological changes,” he says.
Garcia envisions Shape Lab as new learning environment where collaboration areas for students also become their preferred socializing areas. Faculty will mentor in designing, prototyping and fabricating digital objects of creative technology.
Esteban is an Assistant professor in the Department of Computer Graphics Technology.
Ph.D. in technology with a focus on computer art history, Purdue University
MFA in electronic and time-based media arts, Purdue University
BFA in media arts , Universidad de los Andes, Bogota, Colombia
Davin Huston is a clinical assistant professor at Purdue University in the School of Engineering Technology and Trans-disciplinary Studies, Purdue Polytechnic, as well as in the Department of Theatre. Prior to his current position, he was a consultant at the acoustic and audio/video design firm Kirkegaard Associates in Chicago, IL.
His creative and research interests include the use of different art mediums and media to help educate students in technology disciplines. Through this blend of topics, he believes that students will engage in both art and technology with a deeper understanding of the impact the topics have in their lives and in others lives.
In addition to his teaching and research, he is a faculty advisor for a multi-disciplinary student organization, the Association of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering Technologists (AMET). He received his B.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology in 2004 and M.S. in Technology in 2007 from Purdue University.
With that in mind, Huston is excited to help prepare students for the ways they will interact with their colleagues and communities once they are employed after graduation. This approach includes working with students from different majors, fostering discussion to solve problems, and getting to know team members.
Huston sees his role as a coach to his students. He would rather sit among his students as a team member than be stared at as he lectures from the front of a room. As a team member, he can help guide students through a problem, or he can learn along with them if they tackle a problem with no known solution. In fact, he compares the ideal classroom – and his hopes for Shape Lab — to his work as an advisor to the AMET student group (Association of Mechanical and Electrical Technologists).
“I want it to function like an amazing student organization,” he says. “My AMET students are already creating successful multidisciplinary teams. They don’t have departmental or college barriers.” With this perspective, students would help create material for their courses.
MS in Technology, Purdue University (2007)
BS in Electrical Engineering Technology, Purdue University (2004)