Jan 6th 2020

Student Artwork at Illinois Tech Gets a Print Platform with the Publication of 'Cumulus'

A group of students from Illinois Institute of Technology’s College of Architecture launched "Cumulus," a student-run zine serving as a platform for creative expression among the student body, in collaboration with the Art x Architecture on-campus student gallery. Leading the publication of "Cumulus" is Cecilia Charney (B.ARCH. 2nd Year), who realized the potential for an exhibition of student creativity while speaking with friends at Expo Chicago.

“It can be difficult to find the motivation to create outside of studio,” says Charney, referring to the College of Architecture’s intensive, hands-on design courses. “I think we can become so absorbed in class and campus that we neglect the need to explore, whether that be through making, writing something, or exploring Chicago. This seems extracurricular, but I have found that it is profoundly helpful in studying architecture. Architecture is about referencing. Creating a library of references by exploring what we can create will make us better architects.” 

The first issue of "Cumulus" is a 46-page collection of illustrations, painting, poetry, photography, and other artistic mediums, with more than 20 Illinois Tech students contributing. The issue features student artwork shown at the Art x Architecture gallery, located in 3410 South State Street. The issue debuted alongside an exhibit in December 2019.

“With the addition of the 'Cumulus' team to Art x Architecture, the platform to explore the bounds of our education was expanded further,” says Roland Knowlden (B.ARCH. 5th Year), director and founder of Art x Architecture. “Both exhibitions and publications have the power to tell stories, and we hope to unlock that potential.”

"Cumulus" will publish once per semester, with each issue planned around a different theme; according to Charney, the spring 2020 issue will center on climate change. Students interested in contributing can email submissions to cumuluszine@gmail.com or reach out to the "Cumulus" team via Instagram. All Illinois Tech students are encouraged to submit.

“'Cumulus' is a platform for student work, and it is the beginning of promoting exploration and connecting students,” says Charney. “We hope students see the zine and are inspired to make anything, alone or with other students at Illinois Tech.”

All images courtesy Helen Leach (B.ARCH. 1st Year).