Chem Lab Art Projects

This year I have had the privilege of taking general chemistry. In my lab class this semester, I've been making a lot of art. It should be no surprise that the lab coordinator also teaches art chemistry. Every week of lab has produced a piece of "art," and I thought it would be kind of fun to share the products of my "experiments" as all we college students start hustling down for finals and high school seniors make that fated college choice. 

So here's the "collection" for Chem 136, Spring 2016!

Week 1: Synthesis & Purification: Alum Crystals. 
Art Project: Alum Crystal Snowflake
I actually opted not to make it so I don't have a pic. Awkward.

Week 2: Ion Exchange: Removing Heavy Metal Contaminants
Art Project: Patina pressed copper square

Week 3: Freezing Point Depression: Candle Wax
Art Project: Scented Candle

Week 4: Beers Law: Acid Dye on Silk
Art Project: Tie-Dye Silk Scarf

Week 5: Acid-Base: Soap
Art Project: Soap and Fizzy Foot Soaks

Week 6: Production and Conservation of Frescoes
Art Project: Plaster Tile

Week 7: Photochemistry: Cyanotypes & Diazotypes

Art Project: Printmaking with both processes

Week 8: Electrochemistry in the Arts: Anodizing Aluminum & Etching Brass
Art Project: Dyed aluminum-marble key chain and brass pendant

                                                                                        My favorite!
Week 9: Kinetics: Decolorization 
Art Project: Bleached Bag

I will be honest that some of this "art" is kitschy and is not stuff I plan to keep. A lot of it is also more of an attempt of art and would be more successful if I actually knew what I was doing when I started or had some more time to practice. But I think that it's fun that the Whitman gen chem program tries to make its labs interesting. It's especially helpful for the mostly science major people taking the class to get more exposure to the arts. It's the liberal arts way.

Also, I'm definitely proud of my inukshuk brass pendant. I finally learned the proper way to make string beads with head pins. Just look at these earring attempts to see how I've been doing it wrong all these years.

I'm off to go hibernate (err study my butt off) until I'm done with finals. For everyone else, happy spring! :P

Happy Crafting!!


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