Strengthen leadership as significant growth continues in art school
Since the hiring of its first executive director just before the start of the COVID pandemic, the Art school at U of A has made tremendous progress, despite unusual times.
The school has seen significant growth in all areas, including growing from an average of 300 to 500 students, 36 to 55 full-time faculty members, and being able to offer an unprecedented 415 scholarships from a amount over $ 990,000. Incredible work is in progress, but there is still important work to be done.
“The milestones that the School of Art has already achieved are a testament to the extraordinary talent of the faculty and staff who work every day to create opportunity and change,” said Gerry Snyder, Executive Director of the School of Art. “Strengthening the leadership and capacity of the School of Art is essential to continue to build on this success and establish a sustainable future. We need experienced and innovative leadership to lead the way as we continue to grow, strive to become a model of inclusion and diversity, and promote equal access to the arts.
To achieve this, the School of Art recently put in place a new leadership structure, designed to strengthen the day-to-day operations of the school, improve academic and faculty governance, and foster a collaborative culture for long-term success.
At the center of this new structure is Marty Maxwell Street, recently appointed director of the School of Fine Arts. Maxwell Lane has served in a leadership capacity for the school since 2018 – more recently as deputy headmaster of the school. Snyder describes her as one of the most talented directors he has ever worked with.
“Marty brings compassionate leadership to this position and a commitment to making the School of Art a national and international destination for art and design education,” said Snyder.
Maxwell Lane is an associate professor of graphic design and designer, researcher and writer. His research focuses on design that facilitates learning and empowerment through investigations into design pedagogy, collaboration and participatory design. His book, Collaboration in design education: case studies and teaching methodologies was released in 2020.
“It is an honor to serve as principal of the School of Art and to have the opportunity to shape the school together with so many amazing faculty, staff and students,” said Maxwell Lane. “I am continually touched by our unique opportunity to intentionally and strategically build a place where we want to teach, research and learn. With our new leadership structure, we are creating the conditions for an exciting academic space that prioritizes access, transparency, empathy and meaningful new possibilities. ”
In addition to Maxwell Lane’s leadership role, the School of Art has created a new assistant principal position recently accepted by the Associate Professor of Arts Education. Christophe Schulte.
As Deputy Director, Schulte will focus on strengthening university and faculty governance and the policies and procedures of the School of Art. His experience with staffing responsibilities and opportunities will also help him provide support to the school’s faculty as strategic staffing planning is implemented and policies and procedures are improved.
Schulte is the founder and director of the Center for the Study of Childhood Art, which is an interdisciplinary center for research, teaching and community engagement focused on re-conceptualizing the study of childhood art. His scholarship, teaching and community involvement focus on the artistic, playful and aesthetic practices of young children.
“Christopher is an exceptional colleague, dedicated educator, collaborator, innovator and leader,” said Snyder. “His expertise and focus will greatly contribute to the mission of strengthening day-to-day operations and fostering a collaborative culture. “
As the leadership team continues to strengthen and grow, Snyder added that this structure will also allow him to dedicate his time to the Arkansas arts community and to developing strategic partnerships that will help build national reputation and International School of Art as a hub for the study of art.
While Snyder, Maxwell Lane and Schulte focus on the overall mission of the School of Art, they have also empowered individual program managers to manage the intricate details and plans of their fields. These leaders and their areas of expertise include:
Angela LaPorte is director of the arts education program and arts education teacher. She teaches arts education classes and oversees a group of talented teachers who shape a collaborative working environment. His research and teaching interests include diversity and inclusion across social, racial, generational and cultural boundaries, with a particular focus on understanding and reducing the implicit barriers that so often separate individuals and communities. .
John blakinger is director of the art history program and associate professor of contemporary art. He studies the history, theory and criticism of late modern and contemporary art, with a particular interest in the relations between aesthetics and politics. His research and teaching focus on the links between art, science and technology; protest and activism in the arts; and the theory and methodology of art history. He is working on a book exploring political controversies in contemporary art.
Alison place is the Director of the Graphic Design Program and Assistant Professor of Graphic Design. She is a design researcher, practitioner, and writer whose work examines the intersection of feminism and design as a space for critical fabrication, radical speculation, and the equitable redistribution of power. She teaches design at all levels, specializing in speculative social impact design and emerging technologies. His next book, Feminist designer: on the personal and the political in design, will be published by MIT Press in 2023.
Sam the king is the Director of the Studio Art Program and Assistant Studio Art Teacher. As director of the studio’s art program, King oversees six media areas with over 30 professors teaching half of the students enrolled in the School of Art. In addition to his leadership role, King teaches painting and drawing and, in his own studio, focuses on abstract painting, working at the intersection of the material thresholds of painting and the viewer’s interpretive instinct. .
Zora J. Murff is Director of Graduate Studies for the Master of Fine Arts Program in Art Studio and Assistant Art Professor in Photography. He specializes in teaching the social capacity of images and photography’s complicit entanglement in stories of racialization and darkness as spectacle and commodity. Murff’s work has been recognized and honored in academic spaces, art galleries, publications and independent arts organizations.
Donal O’Donoghue is Director of Graduate Studies in Arts Education. The Master of Arts program in Arts Education will launch in fall 2022, and a PhD. program is currently in development. In addition, O’Donoghue is an Arts Education Professor, Distinguished Fellow of the National Art Education Association, and Editor-in-Chief of Studies in Arts Education. He studies contemporary art, the practice of conservation and education, with a particular interest in the educational potential of contemporary art, its educational quality and its distinctive ability to function as a mode of inquiry and scientific research. .
Jennifer greenhill, Endowed Professor of American Art, is the Director of Graduate Studies and Museum Partnerships with the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Art History. She is working with colleagues at the university and the museum to create a new Master of Arts with a focus on the arts of the Americas. Greenhill brings a wealth of experience to the post, such as teaching American art overseas as a visiting professor at the Terra Foundation in Paris, France, and identifying key scholarly trends for the co-edited volume, A companion of American art. She is currently writing a book on visual techniques for suggestive advertising around 1900.
Bree mcmahon is the Director of Graduate Studies for the Masters of Design program, currently under review by the NASAD Accreditation Commission. McMahon is also an assistant professor of graphic design. His research explores methods to disrupt traditional approaches to design pedagogy. Alongside various collaborators, she develops and facilitates workshops for design students who examine complex topics through dialogical project prompts while incorporating opportunities for student conversations that encourage critical perspective and learning.
“This is an incredible group of leaders who continue to do so much for our students and improve the art school and our community beyond,” said Jeannie Hulen, Associate Dean of the U of A’s. Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences, which houses the School of Fine Arts. “We are excited to see what they create and accomplish next to support the growth and success of the School of Art.”
Todd Shields, Dean of Fulbright College, agrees, adding, “For art school, to train, grow and achieve those early successes in such a short period of time is truly amazing.”
“The leaders of the School of Art go out of their way to ensure this is a place where next generations of creative thinkers and problem solvers will emerge and spark innovation here and around the world through their art and design. “, did he declare.