Mission and Goals:
The successful McMurry University student who studies art develops conceptual and technical skills of artistic expression, creative problem-solving, artistic appreciation and historical perspectives. In the department’s art production-oriented program, the student studies many different traditions of art making. The successful art student fully participates in classes, assignments, critiques and exhibitions resulting in a comprehensive knowledge of design, art media, expressive possibilities, creative solutions and professional practices.
A broad background of knowledge in the art forms of Western Civilization and non-European cultures as it relates to pluralistic contemporary world to enhance the education of art majors and other interested students. Students study art in the classroom and then examine it firsthand through fi eld trips to galleries and museums; they are also afforded opportunities to study abroad. The successful senior student develops a resume/portfolio for campus wide presentation and in preparation for post-graduation endeavors.
The Bachelors of Fine Arts (BFA) student concentrates in multimedia and graphic design, or studio art. The BFA studio art graduate who excels attends graduate school or pursues a career in graphic design, illustration, museum education, art galleries, art education or establish his or her own teaching or production studio.
The Bachelors of Art (BA) degree with a major in studio art is designed for students who wish to obtain a liberal arts degree with a major in studio art, multimedia and graphic design or all level art education; this degree requires a minor.
Special Programs and Opportunities:
Awards. Entering freshmen art students may apply for the Perry Bentley Art Scholarship in March. Transfer students and current art majors may apply for other art scholarships in the spring. Recognition awards are presented to outstanding art students annually. The spring juried annual student art competition acknowledges artistic achievement. Students may apply in the spring for the work apprentice programs and studio space. Faculty assigns apprentices and studios based on productivity, grades, reliability, and participation in the art department.
Galleries. McMurry University’s Amy Graves Ryan Fine Arts Gallery has an active exhibition schedule with area and national art shows, as well as student and faculty exhibits. BFA art majors have a senior exhibition of their work as part of their degree requirements. BA majors will have a group senior exhibition. Through the Brown Bag artists lecture series and artists workshops, students meet and study with exhibiting artists. The Gypsy Ted Gallery offers student exhibition and studio space; and offers shows to select area artists. This gallery is run by a student director.
Travel courses in Art. The Department of Art endeavors to offer one travel course annually. Classes travel to regionally, nationally and internationally signifi cant art exhibitions and archeological sites related to students’ course of study.
Art Honor Society. Art students who have completed 12 semester hours and have a 3.0 average or above in art are eligible to be nominated by faculty to the Epsilon Theta Chapter of Kappa Pi International Collegiate Art Honorary Fraternity. Kappa Pi sponsors Homecoming and Christmas art sales, service projects and art related, educational and social activities.
Internships in Art. Art internships for junior and senior art majors, which occur in ART 3390 and ART 4390, give students meaningful practical experience by working in a gallery, museum or commercial setting to see how the theoretical concepts of art are put into practice. Students have interned at the Abilene Reporter News, Center of Contemporary Art, Zachry Associates, Grace Museum, and National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature.
Departmental Honors. Please see the description of the Honors Program under the Special Program section earlier in the catalog.
Facilities. The Art Department has a superior ceramic facility. The Noel and Anita Chapin building built in 2000, houses 14 potters wheels, a slab roller, four electric kilns, three gas kilns (Raku and highfi re), clay mixing room, faculty studios, glaze mixing room, and large work spaces. The computer lab has 14 Macintosh computers. The painting, drawing and design rooms have northern lighting.