Vicky Tahos, '19, places string on Fusion's String Theory exhibit on the front lawn. The art instillation was designed to highlight the similarities between students on campus. (Michelle Wolff/B&W Staff)

‘Knot so different’: student project highlights commonalities


Fusion, Lehigh’s student-run design agency, had a theory. It turns out, Lehigh students are “knot” so different after all.

From Nov. 2 to Nov. 4, Fusion held a student impact project called String Theory on the UC Front Lawn. It was a live art instillation where students used a piece of string to connect themselves to what they identify with. Fusion created the event as an interactive way to emphasize how interconnected students lives are.

Starting with a large circle in the middle of the art board representing Lehigh as the largest commonality, each participant took a different color string and wrapped it around a peg encompassing the circle they felt a connection toward. Through connecting physically with different, smaller bubbles on the board such as “music,” “careers,” “personality” and “ethnicity,” students were able to form this woven pattern with their strings.

At the beginning of the String Theory installation, the board was empty. As the event progressed with more overlapping strings and “crossing of paths,” an intricate piece of artwork was created.

Through the use of bright colors and shapes such as orange bubbles, Fusion drew a lot of attention to its event on the front lawn. Students stopped by the instillation to ask questions, participate in String Theory and sign their names on the back of the board.

“It’s a pretty awesome idea,” Jason Sadler, ’17, said. “Having the strings all be different colors really shows the overlap in how similar our lives are here at Lehigh.”

A simple idea to do something involving string quickly evolved into an student instillation and interactive event.

“We split up into two groups and brainstormed,” designer Natalie Wasserman, ’17, said. “We knew we wanted to do some sort of string art to emphasize Lehigh as a whole, but we honestly didn’t know that it would evolve into this until the very end.”

From the idea and brainstorming phases, to the completion of the actual instillation, all Fusion members played an integral role in the student-driven campaign.

Although all members contributed to the idea, it was designer Bonnie Kwon’s, ’18, layout design that was ultimately selected for the physical instillation.

“It’s funny, our original idea stemmed from what everyone dislikes about Lehigh,” Kwon said. “Students tend to fall into their little circles here on campus, hence the smaller bubbles in our layout choice. But our ultimate goal here is really to promote unity on a larger scale.”

Fusion hopes String Theory creates a lasting campaign effect on campus, bringing a greater awareness to Lehigh students and faculty.

“Even though everyone comes from different backgrounds, we’re all interconnected in some way,” designer Shayna Love, ’17, said.

Fusion’s String Theory’s goal was to bring students together and to show them they are more alike than they think, despite differences or separations of groups on campus.

“And to think, this all started with a simple idea and a piece of string,” Kwon said.

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