MSU Art Lab


The Michigan State University Broad Art Lab is a pilot project of the Eli & Edythe Broad Art Museum. Set across the street from the University’s main art museum on the corner of Grand River Ave and Bailey St, the new development is designed to encourage collaboration and engagement with the Greater Lansing Community and the University’s art programs. Primarily focusing in the development and experimentation of emerging art, the Art Lab is also intended to be utilized as a community center, available for professional workshops, brainstorming retreats, business meetings or special events.

More Information about the Project

Improvement Ideas


    Empowering Elementary School Artists   


    Author:     Kylie LaBeau   


    Principle:     community involvement, community place, creativity   



Children rarely have chances to decide many things, and if there is no way for them to experience it while they can without major consequences, they should be able to. The Broad Art Lab can act as a stepping stone for students into the world of deeper thinking and meaning, as well as empowerment. Tours, workshops, and and field trips for elementary schools in surrounding areas could bring art to children in a climate where it is one of the first school programs to be cut in the face of economic hardship.

Empowering children that attend surrounding schools, like Lansing Public Schools, can be done in many different ways through the program. One would be by teaching children that art does not require someone to have copious art supplies. This could then be shown with a workshop, teaching children that art is within reach, regardless of access, interests, and space.


Broad art lab school


    Building a Strong Identity   


    Author:     Mike Grimes   


    Principle:     Identity and Culture   



When you walk down grand river there are many things that stick out and catch your eye. One being the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum. Directly across the street from this eye-catching building is the MSU Broad Art Lab. The purpose of the Art Lab is provide a space where members of the MSU community can propose ideas and work together on creating art.

When you drive or walk past the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum you appreciate the architecture and can imagine the art inside is just as extravagant as the building itself. With the Art Lab you cannot visualise the amazing things that occur inside, the Art Lab should place an electronic billboard that presents art created by students on the side of the building. This electronic billboard can rotate beautiful pieces of art and show all the people that pass this building. This display will create a sense of identity and allow viewers to appreciate what goes on inside the Art Lab without needing them to take the time to stop inside.


Electronic display signs


    Art therapy   


    Author:     Zainab Hanosh   


    Principle:     Community involvement   



The MSU Art Lab on Grand River is walking distance from the MSU campus and the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum making it easily accessible to students and residents in the Greater Lansing area. The Art Lab is a place where students and locals can go for workshops, meetings, collaborations, art events and so much more. It offers a sense of belonging to those interested in art and the many ways one can appreciate it, whether it is creating or admiring it.

An improvement idea for the Art Lab would be to create an outdoor space for hands on creative ideas such as wall and sidewalk art as it currently lacks aesthetic sensibility. This is also important as community involvement is a key factor in creating engagement and a sense of belonging. This idea can attract people of all ages and backgrounds and encourage them to pour their thoughts and emotions using art. Not only will this idea improve the appearance of the city and make the Art Lab more aesthetically pleasing, but people will be more inclined to be outdoors staying active while exploring the creative art expressions on the streets. This improvement idea can help those who suffer from mental illnesses while offering awareness. For instance, writing words of encouragement with appealing art can help improve the pedestrian walking by who suffers from depression. He or she may be inclined to come back and create their own art as a form of therapy. It has the potential to create an intersection of art and mental health awareness.


Hanosh artlab


    Create into a Community   


    Author:     Rumana Uddin   


    Principle:     Community Involvement   



The design I found interesting was the MSU Art Lab. It is located perfectly and is a pilot project of the Eli & Edythe Broad Art Museum. It is right across the university's main art museum. I think the placement of this art lab will create a sense of community and give more life and buzz to the area. It will make the area look more inviting and add a positive presence.
It gives more options for things to do for people here. Although the main focus of it is the development and experimentation of emerging art, it can still be utilized as a community center. This can bring people of the community together. People generally work well together when they have the same aim towards creating something in a collaborative space. It can be used for special events and business related things like workshops and meetings. All these potential uses makes the space really versatile and will add a diverse energy to the area. This art lab will give students the opportunity to create and bring some of their visions to life and get recognized for their work. It also will be great for collaborative efforts and to meet others who share the same artistic interests as you. It will also give people the opportunity to explore different interests and broaden their horizons.


Heart of art


    Weekly Cultural Art Events   


    Author:     Jose Gavina   


    Principle:     Culture is Key   



As of right now, they have events planned such as different workshops where you can experiment with new material. One type of event that I think would be interesting to implement would be having a different art event planned every week/month that is focused on a specific culture. I believe it would help draw a lot of new people to the MSU Art Lab that may not have previously heard of it before. To get the word out, the Art Lab could partner with different cultural groups around campus or the greater Lansing community in order to promote it. When I say cultures, I refer to cultures such as – Hispanic culture, Native American culture, African-American culture, and so on. When planning these events, it is beneficial to have people that are a part of those cultures to be involved in the planning in order to make sure everything is accurate and representative of their true culture. They could take their partnership with the cultural groups a step further and have them co-run the event so they can be involved with it as well as attending it. For example, a latinx group on campus could run a workshop on different forms of latinx art. The image below shows a diverse group of people coming together to dance (a form of art). Having people of different backgrounds coming together in the name of art is a wonderful thing

Implementing this event should be something that is fairly easy as they already seem to have a great idea of how to run workshops. This would just be a way of getting more community involvement while keeping culture in mind. They have already done partnerships with Lyman Briggs, the College of Arts and Letters, and Abrams Planetarium, so it shows that they are definitely open to working with outside groups. They typically charge around $8 per workshop, so that is something they could continue doing. An alternative to that is the groups that the Art Lab partners with could have fundraisers in order to raise money for anyone from the community who may not have the funds to attend. In the end, doing events like these could potentially increase the diversity of an area. That would greatly benefit the area as well since having people of different backgrounds will mean that different ideas will get brought to the cities to potentially solve any key issues.


Diverse art


    Community Art Wall   


    Author:     Clare Kiley   


    Principle:     community involvement   



The Art Lab, now open across the street from the Eli and the Edythe Broad Art Museum, is a community space that will be used in a number of ways including, art exhibitions, community events, workshops, and offers a collaborative space for the university and community to come together. Of the different uses for the space, I see the hands on workshops on specific art techniques for all ages, as being the most effective at bringing creative minds of the community together. My design improvement idea is to designate a wall of the art lab to hang up artwork made my the community in these workshops.

These hands on workshops offer a great opportunity to parents in the East Lansing area to get their children excited and involved in the community, offering them a space to learn and create. When I was a child my parents would take me to art museums and I never liked them; I was always bored and wanted to go do something else. However if I was able to create a piece of art and see it hung up on the wall next to all the real masterpieces I would have felt proud and begged my parents to take me back. These workshops have the capability of bringing people from all walks of the community together, from students to parents and their children to anyone interested in learning and improving on art related skills. Being able to display all of the pieces of art from the workshops will both promote people to feel proud of their creations as well as showing passerbys what the art lab is all about and what types of projects they could be involved in.


Puzzle surftaco 5


    Community Art   


    Author:     Veronica Albo   


    Principle:     Community Place   



The MSU Art Lab is located right across the street from the Broad Art Museum, a place where culture and history can be shared. Beyond physical art (sculptures, paintings) expression comes in many forms such as poetry, photography, and music. The Art Lab has the potential to create its own sense of history and culture within the East Lansing community by hosting events such as poetry readings, painting classes, and putting the works on display like our own community art museum. The Art Lab already can be used for business meetings, workshops, and retreats and hosting community events can get more people involved and bring recognition to the diversity of East Lansing. Local schools, churches, or any groups could participate or take turns hosting themed events to share their own communities within the East Lansing community.


Artlab veronicaalbo


    Nature in the Art Lab   


    Author:     Derrick Dawson   


    Principle:     The Biophilic City - Nature is Key!   



The Art Lab is a building constructed to provide a place for others to seek refuge, study, group meetings, observe arts and culture, and serve as a safe haven to many. Given its multipurpose intent, the venue is trafficked by large numbers and has a growing customer base due to its extension resulting from the award-winning Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum.

Adding a touch of nature to any setting produces fresh air and another source of life. Plenty of people buy plants to spruce up their rooms or desks, usually for decoration and having the pop of color, however adding the familiarity of nature and the external world in an enclosed place is a comforting added benefit. Biophilia, or the idea is that humans are innately drawn to other forms of life and that the urge to be surrounded by greenery and other people is inherently natural, further supports my idea and argument of mixing interiors with the exterior. Biophilic cities promote incorporating nature into the design to create a multisensory experience.


Plants green interior design ideas 17


    Interactive Surveys   


    Author:     Derrick Dawson   


    Principle:     Citizen-Centered Development   



Part of the experience of being a successful business is having a returning customer base. With the idea of implementing a survey station or idea box in the lab and museum, visitors and guests are able to express which exhibits they enjoyed the most, least, or what they would like to experience during their next visit. The Art Lab is an all-round institution intended to be utilized as a community center, available for professional workshops, brainstorming retreats, business meetings or special events. Collecting the valuable opinions of those who fund, support, and encourage the longevity and productions of the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum from all different sectors is a way of ensuring loyalty to and from the establishment.

By providing the opportunity to partake in brief and digestible surveys to members and patrons on topics like quality, what they enjoy, what has room for improvement, and what they’d like to see, organizations are not only able to use the data to their advantage to improve the visitor experience and help with their own projections, they are also making their customer’s opinion and input count. In order for people to want to revisit, they need to feel like they are welcome and that if they were to want to make a change that their actions could help make those changes. Similar to anything we invest in, it’s fulfilling to see your own ideas or suggestions applied and even prospering.




    The Culture of Children’s Composition   


    Author:     Kylie LaBeau   


    Principle:     Creativity, Bringing Culture over the lines   



This program could be used in conjunction with the Empowering Elementary School Artists, but it is aimed at helping to teach a generation of citizens that can use their backgrounds and self to mold their interactions, in addition to their personal voice.

The main idea is to have children produce art, craft an “artist statement” describing what their art means to them, what influenced, and so on, and it can then be voted on throughout schools. The winners would then get their art and artist statements put up into the Broad Art Museum for a certain amount of time, and then another cycle of voting and art would start.


Broad art children vote art


    Chalk Walks Taking Steps Towards Involvement   


    Author:     Corrin Misak   


    Principle:     Community Involvement   



Community involvement is a key asset to constructing a functional city which establishes a sense of city pride, and the MSU Art Lab has an opportunity to create this. Currently, the Art Lab displays objects from the university art museum, as well as hosts various group workshops, retreats, and meetings. This creates a great community center for those who know about it, but how do they draw more people in to create new collaborative ideas and art? As a resident in Greater Lansing, it is clear that people love nothing more than connecting with each other at social events like sports. By hosting local art events, the Art Lab has the chance to express their purpose while bringing the community together.

Monthly festivals, such as chalk walks, will allow people to meet and connect over art while enjoying themselves. A chalk walk is a celebration of the community artistically expressing themselves by drawing on the pavement with chalk whatever they can imagine. Cities will often hold these festivals to celebrate local artists and give the community a chance to communicate by expressing itself. It can be as organized as they want it to be with assigned spaces to draw in and view, or randomly distributed people and designs. This would achieve the goal of increased engagement in the Greater Lansing community with art and culture. Some possible roadblocks could be the amount of city space allocated to these events and who would be responsible for scheduling them. If a small committee at the Art Lab commits to working with the city on reserving available space for festivals then the rest can be left to those who partake to bring necessities, such as chalk and friends. The sense of belonging is already strong in the Greater Lansing community, but by increased involvement, we become more connected and our culture is better expressed.




    Vacant Wall for Expression/Creative Ideas   


    Author:     Aliya Mckethern   


    Principle:     Citizen-centered Development   



Keeping citizens at the focal point of a city’s development is integral to providing a wholesome, connecting experience. The newly-arrived MSU Art Lab gives the area of downtown East Lansing the chance to present these citizen-centered values to the community. This lab currently displays the artifacts from the art museum located on campus, hosts workshops, and holds meetings. However, to make this resource truly citizen-centered, featuring a wall for incomers to place a note or sticky note, stating ideas they would like to be implemented at the lab, or perhaps just to express themselves or provide words of encouragement. I have seen this element on college campuses across the state; this small element could have the power to connect community members and generate novel ideas for the next theme of the lab. Another interesting intersection is that of the cross benefits for the mental health awareness projected through this art expression as well as the feature of making the lab even more aesthetically pleasing.

The co-collaborative nature of this vacant wall being occupied with citizen’s input may further improve East Lansing’s efforts to become more culturally inclusive. As a center for community involvement, the MSU Art Lab has an opportunity to serve the community in their interests and needs from a more microscopic level. Plans to implement this idea should include MSU Art Lab gaining approval for this feature, thus providing the utensils needed for the job. This new addition to the streets of Grand River could potentially save a student from their dark thoughts, or even simply lead them to more bonds and relationships with their fellow students or civilians.



    Community Art   


    Author:     Julia Lee   


    Principle:     Smart Growth   



An idea for the Art Lab is involving the community with art projects. The people at the Art Lab can collab with community members and citizens living in East Lansing to create group projects. Getting more interactive with the community will bring involve in making social messages through the arts. An example would be making a collage about social change through artwork that possibly presents positive, bright, colorful, messages. The Art Lab can promote their projects as a grand event, social media or their website.

This will bring power as it brings people from the community (and possibly out-of-towners) who come to the Art Lab. They will get to see their progress at a later date. Especially involving the youth in these projects, this will likely make a positive effect on their interpersonal skills.


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    A Sense of Belonging   


    Author:     Julia Lee   


    Principle:     Community Involvement   



An improvement for the Art Lab is hosting fundraising student exhibitions. The exhibition will be a general admissions party so the ticket sales and possibly other sponsorships can fund scholarships for MSU students who are focusing on the arts. Having showcases of MSU students would make an impact on the artists and the public. For these student exhibitions. The public will have the chance to buy students’ artwork. The proceeds from the art sales will go directly to the students.

This idea will create a fun event for art lovers and buyers as well as those who are interested in appreciating the arts, marketing, and MSU. Not only framed artwork be included in the exhibition but also students who are involved in Apparel Textile and Design, Art History, and other majors/minors from the College of Arts and Letters. This a step for art students getting involved in the community: displaying their art to the community.




    Constant Changing of Art   


    Author:     Aaron Litt   


    Principle:     Creativity, Vacant Wall for Expression   



The newly opened MSU Art Lab, conveniently located across the street from the iconic Eli And Edyth Broad Art Museum, is a new space that holds all kinds of events and meetings for people interested in art and the students in the art programs can collaborate on ideas and projects. One thing that I believe this building is lacking is a true identity. The building, while new and modern in design, lacks a true identity that the Art Museum across the street has. The art museum is known for the innovative design and is easily recognizable. The art lab across the street in my opinion doesn't possess something that makes it stand out.

An idea to help with this issue of creating an identity for the art lab is to have the walls outside of the building serve as the canvas for the students and other residents to express their creativity. Having paintings or graffiti designs on the walls outside would give the building a true image, and easily catch the eyes of citizens passing by in their cars or on the streets. There are many different routes you can go about this idea as well, for example, having the walls be ever-changing, each month or few months a new theme or idea is used to create a mural on the walls that represents an event or idea that is relevant at the time in either just the community, or the world as a whole. This would allow students and residents to express their creative ideas and come together as a community. It would also give the building a unique look that you currently do not see on any of the buildings in East Lansing, specifically along Grand River where the building resides.




    Indoor Forest   


    Author:     Veronica Albo   


    Principle:     Nature   



WIthin the East Lansing community, we are already lucky enough to be surrounded by a great natural atmosphere. The miles of walking trails follow the river and there are endless trees. However, crossing Grand River, the area becomes instantly more industrial and less environmental. The MSU Art Lab is the perfect place to incorporate different types of creativity into the atmosphere. Creating a living art exhibit with live plants would be a great way to emphasize the importance of plant life within the community. Different representations of plant life, as well as the importance of recycling and working with our environment, can bring recognition to the different problems being faced by our planet. The Art Lab has the opportunity to bring together the local community while being expressive of the importance of nature. Even differences in plant life are diverse, and this can be expressive of local diversity with the inclusion of plant life specific to East Lansing and the MSU campus. Within an industrial landscape, the composition and inclusion of nature would create a beautiful juxtaposition that leaves a lasting impact on those who visit, and at the same time, it could bring awareness to the changes of the environment and the necessity for change.


Nature albo


    Music Connectivity   


    Author:     Mai Vang   


    Principle:     Creativity / Community Place   



Art comes in many different forms. Art isn’t just drawing and painting, it’s creating. Music is also considered art, but many times it is not included in the category when people talk about art. A good idea to improve the MSU Art Lab would be to add in music or a place to create music. Not only will it bring more people together, but it creates an even bigger community for students. Connecting drawings, paintings, and sketches with music can create a safe environment for those who need it. A lot of people draw to release stress, but simply listening to music can also release stress. A good way to incorporate music into the MSU Art Lab would be to have the basic instruments placed at a corner, such as a piano, guitar, or drums. Anyone is welcomed to come in and perform any time they want.


Msu art lab


    art community   


    Author:     Isabella Davidson   


    Principle:     community involvement   



Art is something that brings people together. I came up with the idea of a mural that each student puts an idea into. This could be done online where each person picks a color that stands for ideas of what they represents what they feel Michigan State University stands for. There will be many options of sentences correlated to colors on what MSU means for them. There will be a large mural or wall where each student can be represented as a mini dot.

This can be implemented like how MSU goes about other types of grade holds. I think the importance, culture, and meaning of our school should be mandatory to discuss. It can be thought of as a respectful form of being a student here at MSU. It will be a simple thought provoking one thought question and then your answer will be submitted. I think it could also be a cool photo background for students to pose behind for what their school means to them.


Tiny dots


    Art and Nature   


    Author:     Michelle Ratchford   


    Principle:     Nature, Sustainability   



The MSU Art Lab is a productive way of promoting community involvement within the arts in East Lansing. The Art Lab could add plants and greenery throughout the establishment inside and out to add a comforting ambiance, while also helping to sustain the environment.

The Art Lab could add living roofs outside can become a long-lasting habitat is not only energy efficient but also improves air quality. Plants inside can also improve the air quality while keeping the space cool and visually appealing.




    Adding a welcoming feel   


    Author:     Theo Roberts   


    Principle:     Togetherness of community   



I believe that this art lab was a great idea for our campus. It gave students and more importantly the community, the opportunity to witness first hand this newly displayed art. However, it seems quite bare and is there something we can do about that? There most certainly is and all it takes is a little community involvement. This can be done by bringing students and the public together so that the art lab feels more welcoming and presentable for the future.

One way we can make it feel more artsy and welcoming, is if we are able to decorate the place more. It is very empty and feels like it needs to be filled. This would be a great opportunity for the students and the public to create and display their own pieces of art and present them at the art lab. Everyone that submits a piece of art would then have the chance of getting their artwork displayed at the art lab. This is a great way to get art/desgin students involved in this new lab.




    Art in the Classroom   


    Author:     Theo Roberts   


    Principle:     Incorporating class in the art lab   



With the sufficient amount of students we have at this college, it already amazes me how we are able to fit thousands of kids into the classrooms. However, I think this art lab is the perfect opportunity to add more classrooms. This brand new lab is perfect for the art/design major as it gives them a world of their own to study in. Not only would it feel like home to these kids, but that fact that it is off campus gives them a sense of comfort as they are excluded from the rest of campus.

I don't think it would only be a great success, but it might even attract more art majors to the college if we are able to provide another resource for these students. The space is big enough for small classrooms and it gives the students and professors head-on information about the study of art. Also the fact that it is just the other side of grand river means it is not that long of a commute for the student


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