Department of Visual Arts
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A child begins to draw before he or she can read. We can all find ourselves reflected in a work of art that expresses a mood, feeling or thoughts. Monuments in a cathedral, paint on a canvas or scribbles on a cave exist to visualize one's thoughts and ideas, and preserve the culture of our ancestors for decades or centuries. Before we could communicate via blogs or email, before letters and books, humanity expressed themselves visually.
The Visual Arts department at Eastern shares with its students, majors and non-majors alike, the power of visual communication. Students can learn the ancient art of Chinese calligraphy or render 3-D animations in the virtual world. Carving stone, making paper, painting a tree in a field, organizing an art exhibition, or traveling to the far corners of the world to see a work of art, are all integral parts of the program at Eastern. The Visual Arts Department requires all students to experience all aspects of the art making process before focusing on a single medium. They then can choose to work on illustrations, advertising, create a portrait or abstraction, put found materials together, draw from the model, create a new design for products packaging, or carve a woodblock print. In their Junior and Senior year our students often move on to other unique opportunities. They have interned at the Wadsworth Atheneum, the New Britain Museum, Disney and ESPN; created public service announcements for the Governor’s census committee, and a website for Windham No Freeze Zone, and have worked at the United Way as well as the Special Olympics of Connecticut.
The Visual Arts faculty are mentors and are exemplary of what an artist can do. Faculty have been in exhibitions throughout New England, NYC and Miami, they curate exhibitions at museums in Connecticut and Louisiana, have written blogs for Huffington Post, and scholarly articles for Art Journal. They have been reviewed in the Hartford Courant, New England Art Journal, Art in America, New York Times, Art Forum, and have participated at the College Art Association and Art Basel, as well as conferences in Buffalo, Chicago, Cuba and Barbados.
Students from our program go on to be art directors for advertising agencies and newspapers, perform Art Therapy, exhibit in galleries and museums, and become art educators and museum professionals. They use their creativity in all walks of life so that they can in turn help others to visualize their thoughts, ideas and feelings.
- Gail Gelburd, Chair of the Visual Arts Department