Ify and a sculpture she made during her January term art course
Coming into UVa, studio arts was the furthest thing from my mind, let alone photography. I had come straight from a boarding school in Nigeria and I was interested in being a doctor. I had no idea that I could combine my second interest, art, in my college career.
My path in studio arts started this way: I was frantically trying to fill my schedule with courses during my first year and someone mentioned that "Introduction to Drawing" was a good class to take. I decided to go with it.
It was a great class and the professor was very informative and helpful. Based on my awesome experience, on a whim, I decided to take a photography class. Side note, for any concentration in a major in studio arts, you have to take a drawing class first (whether it’s a major in painting, sculpture, photography, and so on).
From one photography class, it became two then three. I decided in my third year that I would major in Studio Arts with a concentration in Photography.
Something great about UVa’s studio arts major, is that they require you to take classes in other artistic concentrations in order to complete the major. The department wants its’ students to be well rounded regardless of concentration. I myself have taken new media courses, cinematography courses and a sculpture course. All very interesting and worthwhile.
Another cool thing about the major, is what 4th years do for their “thesis”. A studio art major’s thesis is creating an exhibition based on their concentration. This would mean, that next Spring, I would have to create my own exhibition using photographs (since that is my concentration). I am given total reigns over my exhibition. This includes framing, location and so on.
All graduating studio art majors exhibit their theses in the art building, Ruffin Hall. These include sculptures, paintings, printmaking, anything and everything you can possibly think of.
Unfortunately, the Arts community (including Drama) at UVa is not only physically separate from central grounds, most people do not know much about the arts program at UVa and art throughout the Charlottesville community. Strides, however, have been taken to tighten this gap between art and the student body. The Arts Council (a subset of the Uva student council), run by UVa’s students, email events to the student body about artistic events and opportunities not only on Grounds, but in Charlottesville. There are also plenty of art clubs to get involved with at UVa.
Even if you choose not the major in Studio Arts, there are still plenty of ways to get involved with the Arts at Uva. I encourage everyone to take at least one art class. It is definitely worth it!
To find out more about the studio arts major, as well as the UVa arts in general, here are some great websites to check out:The Studio Arts Major
UVa Arts and Events