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Buff State interior design project with BPS on display at CEPA Gallery

STAFF REPORTS


Ten Buffalo State interior design majors worked with Buffalo Public School (BPS) students to create architecture design projects inspired by poems, neighborhood revitalization, and resilience against natural disasters, among other things.

The culminating projects can be seen at the sixth biennial Architecture + Education Exhibition at CEPA Gallery, 617 Main Street, in downtown Buffalo. It opens Friday, January 12, and runs through Friday, January 19. Approximately 250 preschool-through-high school students made projects ranging from drawings to 3D sculptures, with help from professional architects and Buffalo State, University at Buffalo, and Villa Maria College students.

“The projects are all so creative. They connect to math, science, technology, and art, which is fantastic,” said Lauren Tent, CEPA education director. “We’re very happy to host this exhibit.”

An opening reception at CEPA will be held January 12 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. It’s free and open to the public.

“This is a great event celebrating a local culture of education, giving back, and design appreciation,” said architect Jessica Moore, lecturer of art and design, who taught Teaching Practicum for Interior Design in the fall.

This was Moore’s first time teaching the three-credit course in which students are paired with professional architects and teachers. Participating schools this year were Buffalo Academy for Visual and Performing Arts, Bennett Park Montessori, Frederick Law Olmsted School, Leonardo da Vinci High School, and PS No. 53 Community School.

“The teams worked together to weave eight to 10 architecture and design lessons into the curriculum over the semester,” Moore said. “A couple of our students were paired with a teacher in a gifted and talented classroom who asked them to focus on poetry. They had the kids build a model and a circuit board that they saw as an expression of the poems. It required both the middle school students and our students to think of concepts in a different way.”

Another group worked with first-graders charged with brainstorming improvements to their Jefferson Avenue neighborhood. They came up with ideas such as adding a drive-thru ice cream parlor and a pool.

“This was a great experience for Buffalo State students to work one-on-one with a practicing architect,” said Moore. “It’s possible that this experience could set the foundation for a longer mentoring relationship, a future internship, or consideration for a job upon graduation, which is priceless.”