Arts Division

2014-15 General Catalog

Porter College, D Building,
(831) 459-4940

Program Description

The Arts Division offers both creative and critical studies of art and culture at the undergraduate and graduate level. The division is committed to building a sustainable model for excellence in the arts. Instruction in the arts inspires and develops the capacity for individual and collaborative creative thought, analysis, and action within and beyond the university. Our faculty consists of artists, historians, critics, and theorists working across the arts in a global context.

Undergraduate education in the arts includes bachelor of arts (B.A.) programs in art, film and digital media, history of art and visual culture, music, and theater arts, and a bachelor of music (B.M.) in music. There are also several minors offered in film and digital media, history of art and visual culture, electronic music, jazz, theater arts, and dance.

Established graduate programs include the interdisciplinary digital arts and new media master of fine arts (M.F.A.) program, the social documentation master of arts (M.A.), the music master of arts (M.A.), and the theater arts master of arts (M.A.). Doctoral programs include the music composition doctor of musical arts (D.M.A.), and Ph.D programs in music, visual studies, and film and digital media. A master of fine arts (M.F.A.) program in art (environmental art and social practice) is currently in review.

The Arts Division provides students with access to quality work spaces, including a new digital-arts research facility with two experimental media labs, along with a state-of-the-art music recital hall, practice rooms, electronic music studios, and recording facilities, four theaters for dramatic productions, filmmaking studios and editing suites, surround-sound screening theaters, drama and dance studios, painting and printmaking studios, a foundry, photography and computer laboratories, and specialized lecture and seminar classrooms. McHenry Library houses an extensive collection of books and periodicals on the arts, as well as an analog and digital slide collection, music scores and recordings, and one of the largest collections of films and DVDs in the University of California system. Exhibition space in the arts includes galleries for students and faculty shows. Celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2011-12, the Sesnon Gallery presents curated exhibitions to the university community and the general public. The Institute for the Arts and Sciences, a focus for interdisciplinary exhibitions, conferences, symposia, and seminars, is currently in development.

The Theater Arts Department offers a wide variety of performances in four venues, ranging from faculty-directed productions of classics and musicals on our Mainstage to intimate student created productions in our century-old converted barn. An annual Dean’s Lecture Series invites innovative leaders to present on selected topics of interest to the campus community. Student work is regularly broadcast on SCTV, and Eyecandy, a student-run magazine and blog, publishes student writing on film, television, and digital media. The Music Department hosts an annual festival of contemporary music, April in Santa Cruz, and an opera in the spring quarter of each year, and presents a variety of solo and ensemble concert programs throughout the year. The History of Art and Visual Culture Department hosts a series of speakers and seminars each year on rotating topics that are supported by the Patricia and Rowland Rebele Endowed Chair. The Art Department sponsors regularly scheduled public presentations as well as quarterly open studios and a print and photo sale in the spring. The Digital Arts and New Media M.F.A. program regularly sponsors digital arts events, such as festivals, symposia, visiting speakers, and exhibitions of student work, both on- and off-campus, culminating in an annual exhibition of graduate thesis research.

For more information about specific programs in the arts, please visit catalog listings and web sites for Art, Digital Arts and New Media, Film and Digital Media, History of Art and Visual Culture, Music, and Theater Arts.

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Revised: 09/01/14