Penn State professor and laureate to speak on creative problem-solving

Penn State Professor and Laureate Rebecca Strzelec will be presenting a talk “Art + Engineering = Creative Problem Solving” at 12:10 p.m. on Weds., March 22, in Penn State Shenango’s Sharon Hall room 105. This event is free and open to the public.

Strzelec is a professor of visual arts at Penn State Altoona. Her work focuses on investigating the way wearable objects interact with the surfaces of the body and includes the creation of these wearable objects through computer aided design (CAD) and rapid prototyping or 3D printing.

She has been using 3D-printing technologies in her work since 1999. 3D-printing processes have matured quickly, resulting in greater accessibility and attention, bringing about significant and meaningful advances in many fields, including healthcare, safety, architecture, and art and design. It also has raised questions about ownership, ethics and responsibility. Strzelec's talk looks at 3D printing’s trajectory as well as introduces the work.

Strzelec was originally trained as a traditional bench jeweler who converted to an entirely digital studio practice. She regularly contributes to conversations about contemporary artistic materials and methods.

She received both her bachelor and master of fine arts degrees in metals, jewelry and CAD/CAM (computer aided manufacturing) from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University. Her work has appeared in more than 65 exhibitions, including “Out of Hand: Materializing the Post Digital” at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York City; and “SCHMUCK 2008” in Munich, Germany. Her work can also be found in the permanent collections at such institutions as the Museum of Arts and Design, Racine Art Museum, and the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton, Massachusetts, as well as in private collections, such as that held by former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. Strzelec is currently a co-principal investigator on a four-year, $2 million National Science Foundation grant focusing on multi-field responsive origami structures.

Strzelec is visiting Penn State Shenango as the 2016-2017 Penn State Laureate. Since its establishment in 2008-2009, the Penn State Laureate Program has successfully involved the Commonwealth campuses in activities aimed at students, alumni and local communities across Pennsylvania. This opportunity will continue for the 2016-2017 academic year.

For further information, please contact the Academic Affairs Office at 724-983-2825.