Collaboration between arts and sciences essential for new perspectives, expressions

(Originally posted February 2nd, 2015 in the Independent Florida Alligator opinions section)

This Saturday, I attended the 2015 Creativity in the Arts and Sciences Event. Created by the UF Howard Hughes Medical Institute Science for Life program and the UF College of the Arts, CASE was a daylong exploration of projects created out of collaboration between UF’s best science geeks and artsy types. It was wonderful.

The event centered on topics the science, technology, engineering and math students were researching and translating them into an artistic outlet. Projects ranged from dance to architecture to pottery, with plenty of paintings and a few existentialist performance pieces sprinkled into the mix.

The event was a fascinating chance to hear about cutting-edge research in a way that was more interesting than a laminated poster full of scientific jargon. It was also an opportunity to see the creations that the UF College of the Arts students are capable of, and their talents blew me away.

However, what is even more interesting than the research and the art was the fact that the projects at CASE were created by a collaboration between the arts and the hard sciences. 

Too often, I’ve been told by people majoring in STEM fields that they are “totally not creative.” Personally, as someone majoring in a humanities field, I really don’t understand how anyone enjoys studying physics.

I’d argue that people in the STEM fields actually are creative, and science is all about creativity. Scientific research, for example, starts with thinking creatively in order to discover the solutions to the questions of our universe.

The arts and the humanities incorporate scientific elements into their work all the time, from the chemical blending of colors on a canvas to the precise angles of movement in dance.

But for some reason, instead of appreciating these two disciplines equally, people often seem to judge them against each other…

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