Digital Arts and New Media: MFA: Collaboration, Innovation, Social Impact

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Digital Arts Research Center

The Digital Arts Research Center -- "the DARC" -- is a 25,000 square foot building overlooking the Monterey Bay.  It is the home of the MFA Program in Digital Arts and New Media, and parts of the departments of Art, Music, and Performance, Play & Design.  The building opened in April 2010.

The Digital Arts Research Center was designed by Bohlin Cywinski Jackson. Here is the architects' description of the building:

Dark Lab

The Dark Lab is a 50’ x 50’ performance space with 30’ ceilings. It is designed with numerous wire raceways under the floor and in the walls, containing wiring for lighting, sound, video and data.  All wiring is accessible at many points throughout the space, and runs to a theatrical control booth and other control points.

The lab has standard fixed theater lighting as well as robotic, programmable theater lighting. It is outfitted with audio including 8.1 Surround Sound, a long-throw theatrical projector, smaller projectors and work lights.

Top:  "Roda de Video," interactive video installation in the Dark Lab by Drew Detweiler (2010).

Grad Lab

The Grad Lab and adjoining spaces house an Epilog 36 EXT Laser Cutter, a Makerbot Z18 3D Printer, Matter and Form 3D Scanner, Vinyl Cutter and Plotter, Brother Embroidery Machine, Industrial Sewing Machine, Grizzly Manual Mill / Drill Press, Pottery Wheel and Kiln, various hand & power tools, electronics workbench, and a variety of other tools. Additionally, the Lab is equipped with computers, screens, software, and VR equipment, including Oculus and HTC Vive Headsets. Students use these tools for the creation of a variety of projects, including 3D and installation artworks.

Light Lab

The Light Lab is a projection-centric studio space with nearly 1,000 sq. feet of projection-ready surfaces. Like the Dark Lab, the Light Lab features a standard fixed theatrical grid with lighting and installation options. 


Lab Rentals

DANM labs in the Digital Arts Research Center (DARC) are used for research support and occasional special events. These labs are primarily designed to be used as research spaces in the practice of digital art and new media. We do not schedule classes in these labs. They may be booked for special events that support DANM’s mission of digital arts and new media graduate education via the DANM Lab Use Request Form.