Students and teachers can explore the STEM concepts and skills found in the artists work. The STEM Concept tool provides a core idea from the Next Generation Science Standards and illustrates possible ways it has been applied in each artist's work. It also includes artist tips and views on STEM for a personal perspective on their unique STEM + Art connections.


Next Generation Science Standards

Core Idea PS4: Waves and Their Applications in Technologies for Information Transfer

PS4.A: Wave Properties
PS4.B: Electromagnetic Radiation
PS4.C: Information Technologies and Instrumentation.

Escape:  This art project illustrates modern digital communications that rely on electromagnetic waves to function.  The birds are made from still functioning but obsolete cell phones that can send and receive signals by pulsing electromagnetic waves.  Signals received by the phones are converted to voltages that the Arduino can process to make the wings or other parts of the birds move.

skills applied

  • Basic Electronics
  • Arduino programming


The birds are made out of pieces of junk mobile phones that have been brought hack to life. To do this, I used a piece of hardware called an Arduino. It is a tiny computer that allows you to interact with the physical world using electronics. The moving parts of the birds are controlled by small motors called servos. Go to the Instructables website  and have a search for Arduino projects, there are plenty of great ideas for projects along with detailed instructions on how to make them a reality.

Artists on STEM
Has working with science and technology improved your professional career or life and if so how?

People feel more comfortable coming to me with creative projects that are technically challenging knowing that I have the STEM experience and education to draw on if necessary. For example, recently I worked on a project where we hacked around 150 obsolete bits of computer equipment to make them into an orchestra for a viral video.

What was your experience with STEM in school? What would you change now if you could?

When I was at school we weren't shown imaginative uses of technology. It wasn't until after university that I started to realise the potential for using technology to make projects that sparked my imagination. If I could change one thing it would be to learn how to code for creative purposes much earlier.

Do you think there is a difference between artistic and scientific creativity?

“Artistic and scientific creativity are both about creating new ways of seeing or understanding the world. Scientific creativity is often concerned with very specific problems though, trying to think about them in ways that nobody has thought of before. Artistic creativity is more free and often approaches this interpretation of the world from an aesthetic angle.