Design class behind last semester’s swings returns

A design class draws inspiration from an internet music genre to create a new hammock experience.


Photo Courtesy of @biolauniversity / INSTAGRAM

Thecla Li, Visual Editor

Last semester, the art department let the people swing. This semester, art students are redefining nap time. The area that was occupied by swings last spring 2018 has returned this fall, with hammocks. Students can take a study break or a nap on the new hammock pop-up on the south side of campus thanks to a group of design students’ new installation, “Up There In The Disco Space.”

“It’s so gorgeous. I’ve literally just been lying here for an hour instead of going back to my room,” said Annabel White, freshman cinema and media arts major.


Sparked by the success of the previous swing installation, associate professor of graphic design Daniel Chang has committed the students in his Integrated Design 3 course to give back to the community by creating a recreational area of fellowship founded in art.

“It’s just the art department’s way of being there for the students during the most stressful times of the semester,” Chang said. “We have swings for finals and hammocks for midterms.”

The class started off by analyzing the visual language and culture of an internet music genre called vaporwave, which served as inspiration for the installation. Six groups of three students each were assigned different hammock spaces and set about re-furnishing the area. Their goal was to enhance the experience of lying in a hammock by incorporating the components of their vaporwave analysis into their designs.   

Unlike the swings last semester, a faculty representative is not required to remain present at the installation while they are up. This allows the hammocks to be left set up for longer consecutive periods of time rather than being hung up and taken down throughout the day.

“The nature of swings are a little more hazardous,” Chang said. “But with the hammocks we have sufficient padding below and the structure of hammock itself does not allow aggressive swinging.”

The installation is available for students to enjoy on weekdays between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m till next Wednesday, November 7th.


With the art department possibly being moved to Bardwell Hall, Chang expresses his sadness knowing that the hallway which housed the swings and hammocks will no longer exist but believes that it is the nature of a campus that is constantly growing and developing. Chang looks forward to finding new ways and places for the art department to give back to the community with future pop-ups like this one.

“This may be a bittersweet goodbye to this particular project, but it’s OK because as we move, our ideas move with us and we are always going to find an opportunity for community-building,” Chang said.

Encouraged by the many students who put good use into the last few installments, Chang does not intend to stop and hopes to continue providing them in the future.

“What they are, I don’t know, but know for sure that [they] will come,” Chang said.

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