A weekly, low-stress workshop series introducing the community at the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts to overlooked or under-known tools, resources, processes, and ideas. Fox Fridays is a platform for students to develop hybridized practices of creative output that transcend discipline, medium, and experience.
Sam Fox Fridays are made possible by the generous support of the Brabson Library & Educational Foundation.
Welcome to the 2020-21 academic year and the second year of Fox Fridays. We all know this school year is going to be different but we suspect most of us are optimistic about a future where we return to a normal academic environment. With that in mind we have been considering how Fox Fridays might fit into this current reality. It would be easy to just cancel the programming for the year, considering access to the facilities that typically house these workshops are limited. Yet we believe that Fox Fridays has the opportunity to provide ‘value-added’ experiences for our students, faculty, and staff and also create opportunities for the community both within and beyond the walls of the Sam Fox School. We also believe that Fox Fridays carves out space for us to share interdisciplinary skills as well as discuss ideas and issues that are plaguing our everyday realities from a rich variety of perspectives. The daily learning environment may be drastically different than before but the low-stakes, interdisciplinary, and social nature at the foundation of Fox Fridays provides an opportunity to maintain and even expand our rich community in these times.
The theme for this year's workshop series is ‘Nimbleness.’ This is a time we all need to be nimble and adaptable, in life and in creative practice. How can we do more with less? How can we make the work we aspire to in less than optimal situations and without unfettered access to the resources we have become accustomed to? How can we challenge ourselves and investigate new methods of making and thinking? How can we create alternative ways to gather, discuss, share, and learn?
This year Fox Fridays will largely reside online through two types of workshops. First, we will offer software-based investigations that help our community find alternative ways to make the work they formerly did in person. Additionally, we will offer physical and tactile workshops that could be administered remotely. Participants will receive a kit of materials that they can then use during a synchronous Zoom workshop.
In the coming days and weeks, we will begin rolling out a suite of workshops for the fall. If you have any thoughts or questions, please reach out to Fox Friday Faculty Director Jonathan Hanahan. Also if you have an idea for a workshop you would like to see or would like to lead, please fill out the Call for Proposals form here.
Again, we are excited and encouraged that Fox Fridays can be a glue that keeps us connected, learning, and sharing thought through these tough times and are excited to welcome everyone back for the 2020-21 year.
Jonathan Hanahan & Heather Woofter
Fox Fridays Co-Founders
What is Fox Fridays?Every Friday, one resource facility or tool space transforms into a classroom to encourage a new culture of play, experimentation, and cross-disciplinary making and dialogue across the Sam Fox and Washington University campus.
Fox Fridays are about exploring new mediums, tools, and ideas, refining skills, and diving deep into alternative processes. It gives students opportunities to learn from different types of makers and different perspectives in an environment free of the stress and anxiety of studio production. It encourages the development of communities and collaborations which bridge traditional disciplines and establishes relationships outside of defined studio practices. Most of all, Fox Fridays is about celebrating the immense resources available at the Sam Fox School, sharing knowledge, and encouraging collaborative experimentation. So pick a workshop, sign up, and forge a gateway to new possibilities.
Why Fridays?Fox Fridays are as much about culture as they are about tools. Everyone is stressed. Friday is (hopefully!) a less stressful day. Before the anxiety of Monday starts to creep up, Fox Fridays carve out a little space outside the anxiety of studio and classes. Take a few hours to try a new process, learn a new skill, experiment with a medium you have been interested in but couldn’t find time to enroll in a class. Maybe it helps augment your current studio work, maybe not. The point is to try, experiment and forge new pathways in your creative practice.
Who are the workshops for?Workshops are open to anyone in the WashU community interested in exploring new creative outputs. They are free and first-come.
What do the workshops cost?These workshops are generously funded by the Ralph J. Nagel Dean's Initiative Fund. Don't worry about materials, equipment, etc. Just sign up and show up.
Are these workshops for credit?No. While credit is not bestowed, knowledge and experience are. These workshops are intended to provide quick, effortless, and fun investigations into things that might not ordinarily find their way into your studio practice. By investing in workshops with new tools and resources, you may find alternative methods that might later influence your course selection and studio practice.
If I take a workshop do I earn access to the space?Yes and No. Workshops are not immediate keys to free access, but rather, gateways to form further contact points and creative pedagogies. Workshop take-aways include direct connection to classes offered in that particular medium/process as well as a way to establish contact points with experts in the workshop resource on campus. For many, the next best step might include enrolling in a future class, attending an additional workshop, or participating in classes offered through your curriculum. This 'first date' with on campus experts provides an experimental insight into processes you may be unfamiliar with. The workshop should put faces to spaces and make approaching about individual projects more fluid.
Can I take a workshop more than once?Absolutely! If space allows we highly encourage students of varying expertise to enroll. These are not just spaces for novices but also for those previously familiar to learn new things and also use equipment under the supervision of expert instructors.
What if I have class?Speak with your professor. Especially on the Sam Fox campus, many are aware and supportive of these offerings. If the workshop would benefit your studio practice many professors may be amenable to your attendance.
Have an idea for a workshop?If you are a student, faculty, staff, friend, etc. and you have an idea for a workshop that you believe fits into the mission of Fox Fridays, please submit here: Fox Fridays Call for Proposals
Spring 2021 "Nimbleness"View All Tools & Resources
Each Friday workshop focuses on a technique, tool or resource in Sam Fox. Choose a workshop!