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Creating a Monster (Habitat)

Creating a Monster (Habitat)

Thursday, October 24, 2019

By Hayley Naples '20

Over 50,000 attendees stepped into a whimsical world of play as they entered into the Creek Monster’s Habitat! 

Texas Applied Arts students were hard at work this semester designing and constructing a monster habitat for Waterloo Greenway Conservancy’s Creekshow.

The 2019 Annual Creek Show showcased interactive light-based art installations along Waller Creek through downtown Austin.

Lighting Designer Bill Rios and Scenic Designer Delena Bradley, test the UV effect on our Creek Monster Habitat ground cloth.  Photo by Karen Maness

Waterloo Greenway aims to teach Austinites to properly care for our green spaces. Austin residents live in a city that is on the edge of nature, but needs collective work to conserve it. Waterloo Greenway hopes to build parks that connect from Waterloo to Lady Bird Lake to encourage citizens to interact with our beautiful, diverse environment. Additionally, organizers hope to bring awareness to the importance of Waller Creek. 

With the support of the UT Green Fund Grant and the expertise of Texas Performing Arts staff and College of Fine Arts faculty, students designed and created their own immersive installation for the event. The Texas Applied Arts Special Projects class was supported by industry professionals from Santa Fe Opera, Meow Wolf, New York Public Theatre and Perdue University, both in person and remotely through SLACK, to complete their work on the Habitat in 10 short weeks. 

Students work on Creek Monster installation. Photo by Karen Maness.

Students from a variety of academic programs including Engineering, Arts and Entertainment Technology, Radio Television & Film, Architecture, as well as Theatre & Dance, used their diverse skill sets to bring this project to life. 

Creek Monster Habitat concept rendering by Delena Bradley

They also used problem solving skills alongside local professionals from organizations such as dwg landscape architects, sculptor Chris Levak, and UT Landscaping to take their projects from prototype to complete design. 

Through The Creek Monster Habitat project, students applied lessons from their interdisciplinary classes to a real-world installation with active deadlines for an Austin-based client. This incredible team of students, professional staff, and facilities staff from Texas Performing Arts brought this creature to life.  

Creek Monster Installation

Creek Monster Installation Photo by: Daniel Solano

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