Bringing Visiting Artists to Campus
Working alongside professional performers, painters, writers, and other artists enables a growing number of students to gain exposure to practices and networks beyond Stanford. Thanks in part to the Stanford Institute for Creativity and the Arts, more visiting artists live and work on campus, mentoring students and bringing diversity to the faculty. Some of these artists are world-renowned. Others are up-and-coming talents. Many are performers in the public Stanford Lively Arts series. Each helps integrate the arts into campus life and nourish the creative spirit of the university.
Work of Art: Internships
Eight to 10 Stanford undergraduates each year receive paid internships with institutions like the San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Ballet, and The Public Theater in New York City. It’s just one way the new Stanford Institute for Creativity and the Arts is partnering with off-campus organizations to create new opportunities for students.
More Stanford undergraduates can explore the arts, thanks to the Arts Intensive. Launched in 2009, these three-week courses take place in September, before the start of the regular term, and are open to students from all majors. Options include ballet, documentary filmmaking, sound art, and “design thinking.” The program has enjoyed support from The Stanford Fund, the vice provost for undergraduate education, the Stanford Institute for Creativity and the Arts, and the Hume Endowment for the Arts in Undergraduate Education.
Supporting Advanced Students
In her film Fresh Peas, Rebekah Meredith, MFA ’11, tells the story of a struggling black farmer in Fresno, California. As a recent graduate of Stanford’s Documentary Film Program, she hopes to harness the collective powers of storytelling to inspire and influence a large audience. New funding is providing graduate fellowships for more MFA and PhD students in the arts.
Any Stanford student can apply for a “Spark!” grant to support an artistic project in visual art, drama, music, dance, film, or literature. The competitive grants, administered by the Stanford Institute for Creativity and the Arts, range from $200 to $1,500 and are open to advanced art students and non-arts majors alike. The first rounds of grants supported 41 student projects, each spanning two academic quarters. Students display or perform completed works for the entire campus community.
- Bringing Visiting Artists to CampusVisiting artists nourish the creative spirit of the university.
- Arts District on CampusA new Arts District will better integrate the arts into Stanford.
- Work of Art: InternshipsOff-campus organizations create new opportunities for students.
- Arts IntensiveThree-week courses bring the arts to undergraduates from all majors.
- Supporting Advanced StudentsMore graduate fellowships are now available to MFA and PhD students in the arts.
- SPARK! GrantsNew funding supports individual projects for art students and non-arts majors alike.
ABOUT THE INITIATIVE
The goal of the Arts Initiative was, in the words of Stanford President Emeritus Gerhard Casper, to make the arts “inescapable” at Stanford, helping students in every field of study to understand complexity, find creative solutions to problems, and navigate the richness of human culture. During The Stanford Challenge, the initiative was led by Jonathan Berger, the Denning Family Provostial Professor and Kimball University Fellow in Undergraduate Education, and Bryan Wolf, the Hayden Jones Professor in American Art and Culture in the Department of Art and Art History. Professor Casper served as chair of the President’s Executive Committee for the Arts Initiative.
With the establishment of the Stanford Institute for Creativity and the Arts (SiCa) in 2006, professors Berger and Wolf became the Denning Family Co-Directors of the institute. SiCa now acts as a hub for the arts, leading the development of new undergraduate programs, hosting artists in residence, administering multidisciplinary graduate degree programs, awarding grants for multidisciplinary arts research and teaching, and incubating collaborative performances and exhibitions with campus partners and other institutions.
At the same time, the initiative has strengthened the core arts departments and programs in the School of Humanities and Sciences, including art and art history, drama and dance, music, creative writing, and the Cantor Arts Center. Around the Cantor Arts Center, an Arts District is unfolding, and new possibilities await with the construction of Bing Concert Hall and the planning of the McMurtry Building to house the Department of Art and Art History, as well as a new building for the Anderson Collection at Stanford University.
Stephen Hinton, the Avalon Foundation Professor in the Humanities, who served during The Stanford Challenge as senior associate dean for humanities and arts, now serves as the Denning Family Director of the Arts Initiative and SiCa as the university continues its unprecedented investment in the power of the arts.