Kings and Queens of East Chattanooga


Site: Mark Making Campus (Intersection of North Chamberlain Ave. and Glass St.)

Artists: 14 East Chattanooga teens in collaboration with professional artist Frances McDonald

Partners: Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga, Glass House Collective, Nova Copy, Co. Lab, Chattanooga Public Library

Description: Kings and Queens of East Chattanooga is a collection of fourteen painted 3D printed masks sourced in the scanning and 3D printing of the participating teens’ faces. Teens studied Egyptian and Benin art as inspiration for creating high relief sculptures from their mask, which now adorn the roof line of Mark Making’s campus. The idea, inspired by historical “grotesques”, represents the protection of a building from harm and are an act of ownership of the building and surrounding neighborhood. To our knowledge, this was the first application of 3D printing in an architectural context and definitely a first for teen self-portraits to be used as building décor.

As many schools are underfunded, particularly those in inner-city areas, opportunities to have experiences with advanced technology are rare, yet necessary for students’ future success in post-secondary education and the workforce. Kings and Queens of East Chattanooga was an effort to mitigate this gap, holding 3D printing workshops during a fall break camp for teens in East Chattanooga.

Kings and Queens of East Chattanooga was funded in part by Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga.