University of Calgary
With an assortment of artist-run centres, galleries and arts training
institutions based in one city, the department of art at the University of
Calgary (U of C), founded around 1962, plays a role in further
diversifying options for training in visual representation.
An individual aspiring to develop a comprehensive base
for launching a professional artist practice can benefit from the various
degree options offered by the department. Those seeking acceptance into
the department of art must comply with regular university application
procedures. Interestingly, unlike other training institutions, the U of C
has only recently begun to require a portfolio for entrance into its
Once enrolled as U of C art students, individuals can
attain a studio practice, developmental art, or honours bachelor of fine
arts. As other choices, they can opt to pursue a combined program leading
to BFA and bachelors of education degrees, or work towards a bachelor of
art in history of art.
Training is available in several established visual art
disciplines: drawing, painting, photography, printmaking and sculpture.
Once at the graduate level, an additional area of formalized training,
mixed media, is also offered.
The department of art expects to foster inquiry and
innovation in art practices. Though its formally available specializations
are limited in relation to other training institutions, the department's
advantage is its location within a larger academic environment where
various approaches are available to inform the process of creation.
Creating work that crosses disciplines is highly
encouraged and students are prompted to seek out learning opportunities in
other areas of study. They are expected to create their own fusion of
disciplines, which can allow for intense creativity and unexpected works.
Visiting artist lectures and access to some highly
regarded and unique facilities further enhance learning. The
Museum is an important educational tool used on a regular basis by the
department. Bi-weekly visits to the museum's permanent collection, and
access to the accompanying speaker series, serves to integrate art
history, theory and practice.
As a venue for showcasing student and faculty works,
the Little Gallery's weekly exhibitions make the application of learning
visible. Some special events, like the BFA Post Miniature Exhibition and
Silent Auction', happen within this space. The Mezzanine Gallery, serves
to display the work of local artists, as well as that of art students.
As a unique setting for arts training, the U of C's
department of art remains crucial for the balancing of an academic and