A Message from Dean Andrew Schulz

Dear Arizona Arts colleagues and friends:

We all know that maintaining routines can be an important way of coping with anxiety and stress, particularly in times of uncertainty.  I would argue that this principle is as true for organizations as it is for individuals.  In that spirit, I am pleased to share with you this latest edition of our Arizona Arts Monthly Update.

Although we face significant challenges of all kinds, both individually and collectively, I have been heartened to hear about the imaginative strategies our students, staff and faculty have used to continue our work, and to deepen its impact during this time of social distancing. Here are just a few examples:

  • The TURN UP Multimedia Festival, organized by Assistant Professor of Composition Kay He, was transformed into a distributed concert that went live March 27. Watch the performance here.
  • MFA costume design students in the School of Theatre, Film & Television (TFTV) launched a medical mask-making project that garnered bilingual media coverage. UArizona News helped spread the word with this story.
  • The School of Art launched the 2020 BFA Exhibition in a digital format on March 31 with over 80 student artists participating in this annual juried exhibition with video statements by some of the participating artists.
  • Later this month UA Presents will host watch parties on for comedian Hasan Minhaj, who was on their 2020 spring calendar, as well as launching Virtual Photowalks in conjunction with CCP and others.
  • Hank Stratton, artistic director of the Arizona Repertory Theatre,has arranged Q&A and clinics with casting directors: Daniel Swee from Lincoln Center Theatre (Broadway, West End, feature films) and the casting department from The Roundabout Theatre Company (commercial productions include Harry Potter, Moulin Rouge, etc.).
  • Assistant Professor Joe Klug has arranged for prop masters and artistic directors to speak to his theatre students from the Orlando Repertory Theatre, Paramount Theatre in Chicago, Glow Lyric Theatre in Atlanta and more.
  • Tammy Dyke-Compton, assistant professor in the School of Dance, has been teaching her movement classes from her living room, with 50 students following her lead online dancing in their living rooms.
  • Professor Ellen McMahon sent her art students outside with an assignment to take a series of solitary walks and find examples of six ecological principles and make drawings and notes in their sketchbooks.
  • Similarly, MFA candidate Trent Pechon asked his art students to create a piece of land art, and as they think about their earthwork “to contemplate our current state of isolation as mother nature goes on her natural path.”
  • UAMA is offering gallery video tours and virtual presentation series (launching soon), which will feature curator Olivia Miller, Arizona faculty, and other special guests.
  • Andrew Tegarden, a PhD candidate in Art and Visual Culture Education at the School of Art, is leading the effort to establish a program that adds art activities to the Tucson Unified School District’s “Grab-and-Go Mobilized Meal” packages that provides free meals to area students.
  • Finally, Arizona Arts in Schools has launched at-home learning content in all disciplines for K-12 students with online learning modules that will cumulate in national virtual showcases; plus, a Lead Guitar concert featuring guest artists, like legendary Brazilian classical guitarist, Sergio Assad, and students from Tucson, Phoenix, Chicago, Los Angeles, Colorado and Oklahoma on April 25.

And one very significant bright spot is the recent U.S. News and World Report rankings for programs in the visual arts, which place our the School of Art’s MFA in Photography as THIRD in the NATION.

I look forward to seeing you in person when the time is right, and we are able to gather once again to experience and celebrate the transformative power of live arts and the interpersonal connections they engender.

In the meantime, please don’t hesitate to reach out about any matter; I would love to hear how you are.  And remember take care of yourselves, each other, and your loved ones.

Warm regards,
Andrew Schulz Signature
Andy Schulz
Dean, College of Fine Arts
Vice President for the Arts

Chad Herzog: Investing in the Arts

Chad Herzog, executive director of UA Presents, contemplates investing in the arts for a talk with CreativeMornings. “The arts invite us to look at our fellow humans with generosity and curiosity. If we’ve ever needed that capacity in history, we need it now. We need it today. Investing in the arts empowers people.”

>> World of Infinite Possibilities

Student costume designers are making masks for health care workers

Master of Fine Arts theatre students Rachel WilkinsElizabeth Eaton and Ryan B. Moore are working on the initiative alongside Maryan Trombino-Arthur, manager of the school’s Costume Shop, to address the shortage of masks for health care workers in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

>> Making masks at home

Meet the new Chair of Applied Intercultural Research

As the need for solutions to global challenges grows, interdisciplinary graduate degrees are increasingly important. Applied Intercultural Arts Research (AIAR) is the newest GIDP and the first to focus on collaborations with the College of Fine Arts. The program is chaired by PhD ethnomusicologist, violinist, and visual ethnographer, Dr. Jennie Gubner.

>> Intercultural Art Research


The School of Art’s photography graduate program was ranked No. 3 in the nation by the U.S. News and World Report. The program moved up six spots in the publication’s peer assessment survey, taken every four years. The school’s MFA program overall jumped from No. 55 to No. 32. In a separate ranking, the School of Art’s Illustration + Design program ranked No. 9 nationally for public universities.

>> School of Art rankings


Professor/artist Sama Alshaibi brings elements from “Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves” together to comment on current sociopolitical realities in her sculptural installation “The Cessation” for the State of the Art 2020 exhibition at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas.

>> Hyperallergic on the exhibition

Rebecca Senf, chief curator at the Center for Creative Photography, pitched and wrote the first Arizona Arts’ article for the media outlet, The Conversation, “The surprising source of Ansel Adams’ signature style,” which was republished on, the San Francisco Chronicle website.

>> Insight on Ansel

This year marks the 20th anniversary of The Laramie Project, the groundbreaking play examining reactions to the murder of Matthew Shepard. The play has been seen onstage by 10 million people in 20 countries, and a further 20 million people have watched the HBO film adaptation. American Theatre Magazine honored the anniversary and those who conducted the interviews, including TFTV Assistant Professor Greg Pierotti.

>> The Laramie Project

  • Multimedia festival goes virtual, challenges art limitations, Daily Wildcat | 03.27.20
  • Arizona theater groups are sewing mask for health-care workers, Arizona Republic | 03.27.20
  • Artists adapting to closures, Daily Wildcat | 03.26.20
  • Artists defend human dignity in the face of institutional dehumanization, Hyperallergic | 03.23.20
  • Student costume designers sew masks for healthcare workers, KOLD-13 | 03.22.20
  • Tucson theater community stands to lose millions, Arizona Daily Star | 03.21.20
  • “Hollywood on Location,” by TFTV’s Josh Gleich reviewed, Times Literary Supplement | 02.21.20
  • AstroTurf & American exceptionalism: “The Wolves” staged at ART, Tucson Sentinel | 02.19.20
  • Papay Solomon: Africa Elsewhere, Java Magazine | 01.07.20


2020 BFA Exhibition

The artworks from over 80 students are featured in the 2020 Bachelor of Fine Arts Exhibition, displayed online. Students submitted a fully-realized student statement along with six works. Faculty selected the works for the exhibition, which includes Illustration + Design, 2D, Photo, 3D Extended Media and art and Visual Culture Education students.

>> View the Art Here

TURN UP Festival

The TURN UP Distributed Concert 2020 is available to view on the TURN UP website. Launched on March 27, music professor Kay He and organizers hope the concert will be a special and hopeful substitute in the given situation, to celebrate art and technology.

“This sense of belonging and connection is where the mission of TURN UP Multimedia Festival came from,” He wrote. “Art has no boundaries, as artists we all belong to the same art community. Let’s go beyond the ‘border’ of a computer screen, free our creativity, and bring true equality to art and technology, and ALL feel connected by art.”

>> #ArtHasNoLimits

Tucson Cine Mexico

Tucson Cine Mexico film festival, the signature program of the Hanson FilmTV Institute, has been postponed until the fall. New dates to be announced.

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MFA Thesis Gallery
School of Art
Quintetto Profano
Fred Fox School of Music
I Dream in Widescreen
School of Theatre, Film & Television
Virtual Showcase with Zach Filkins of OneRepublic
Arizona Arts in Schools
Freedom Must Be Lived: Marion Palfi’s America
Center for Creative Photography
Southern Arizona artists in concert at The Tucson Studio
UA Presents

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