story and photos by Emily Hilley-Sierzchula, special to The City Wire
More than 100 people explored collaborative art projects at Walker Landing Saturday (Sept. 21) for College Day at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.
"College Day is our first try at welcoming and getting to know our college community, including students, faculty and alumni," said Sara Segerlin, senior museum educator.
"We're an intellectual hub."
College Day is also a recruitment drive for Crystal Bridges' College Ambassadors, which is a volunteer program for college students interested in art.
"I want to bring that collegiate sense of camaraderie and campus vibe to the museum," Segerlin said. "That's the reason for the art collaborations."
One of the collaborative art projects was painting sticks of wood for Eureka Springs artist Robert Norman's "Sphere XOX."
"Each stick represents the individual and the sphere represents the planet and that we're all in this together," Norman said. "Basically, we should all be nice to each other."
Later in the evening at the Light Night Party the sphere was lit with LED lights and spun around.
"It almost appears to dance," said Suzanne Stillman, Norman's fiancee."It's also important to remember that this is all reclaimed wood, meaning that no trees were harmed in this project. ... Basically we saved the sticks from the chipper."
One of the highlights of the event was the flash mob at Crystal Bridges' Eleven restaurant. About 10 people volunteered to participate in the hour-long flash mob workshop that was run by Kassie Misiewicz, artistic director of Trike Theatre in Bentonville, and teaching artist Chris Parks.
After the workshop, the flash mob volunteers held their poses like statues for five minutes while onlookers stared in amazement.
"It's neat to become a piece of living art here at Crystal Bridges," Parks said.
Segerlin hopes there will be more College Days in the future.
"We want college students to know that we do cool things besides having historic art on the walls," Segerlin said.