Gallery at the Commons Provides for Artistic Expression

The Robert E. Kennedy Library's Learning Commons provides a unique venue for student and faculty collaboration by offering exhibition space where technology, scholarly and artistic expression, and diverse perspectives converge in a shared dynamic hub.

Work by students and faculty, in everything from architecture to fine arts and biology to planetary science has a home in the Kennedy Library's exhibition space dubbed "Gallery at the Commons." The Library provides the space and a professional curator to provide students, faculty, and alumni with a venue where they can exhibit their scholarly and creative work. In the spirit of Cal Poly's learn-by-doing philosophy, there are also opportunities for student curators and those majoring in design to work with the Library to develop exhibitions by assisting with installation and graphic design.

Housed on the second floor, the exhibition area offers 880 square feet of open gallery space partially illuminated by natural light. Past projects displayed have included architecture exhibitions, works from the Ethnic Studies Department, and contributions from Cal Poly alumni.

Now in its second year, the "Gallery at the Commons" continues to foster collaborative projects with faculty, students, and cultural organizations. The current exhibition, "Mars Within Reach: Arctic Melodies and Science from the Red Planet," allows visitors to touch, hear, and interact with data from several recent Mars missions. The exhibition blends planetary science, engineering, and music to demonstrate scholarship related to the exploration of the Martian Arctic, with special attention to making the content accessible to persons with visual impairments. Special Collections Assistant Catherine Trujillo worked with Cal Poly physics professor Dr. John Keller, composer Marty Quinn, the NASA Mars Exploration Program at JPL, the NASA Phoenix Mars Lander Mission at the University of Arizona, and Cal Poly's Disability Resource Center to develop the Mars exhibition.

From Kennedy Library's 2008 Annual Publication (23MB PDF).

Past Exhibits

Learn about past and future exhibitions.