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Old 08-06-2016, 12:43 PM
Tatianapaints Tatianapaints is offline
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 96
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Thumbs up A little love for our art schools! Tell about yours!

I still have very fond memories of my years in art school in Russia, then the Soviet Union.

My school was then known as the Mukhina Higher Institute of Art and Design. Now it has been renamed once again after Baron A.L. Stieglitz, the original founder and benefactor of the school in pre-communism days.

I studied in the Monumental Faculty, which was unusual for women at the time. Out of about 10 students accepted per year, there would be maybe one or two women.

In my first two years there were six of us from the U.S.S.R., me the only girl! Each year there were also a small number of foreign students. In my class there were two boys from Mongolia and one from the Azores. They would all have to come several months early in order to be able to speak enough Russian to get by.

It was an exciting time, studying art in downtown St. Petersburg during the time of "perestroika". Access to art museums like the Hermitage and the beauty and architecture of the city itself created an amazing atmosphere to learn in! I could go on and on... maybe someone else has something to tell about their art school?
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Old 10-16-2016, 08:14 PM
gildedbarrel gildedbarrel is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 1
Re: A little love for our art schools! Tell about yours!


Two of the dudes from Team Macho, Aoki and Lauchie, teach painting in the illustration department (BDES side of things). Unfortunately Stephen Appleby-Barr who tried hard to be very cryptic, but ended up being very open about ideas and techniques, left for better things in Berlin. The other two give you information in class; yet, don't like engaging with the students outside of class too often, so questions about techniques are seldom answered. Kevin Bae is also a quite good Painting prof, able to give excellent demos, but his techniques for teaching, although interesting, do not express the theory well enough.

We also have profs that are classically trained in the drawing and painting department (BFA side of things); however, they do not teach what they know as they prefer to push people to abstraction in the drawing and painting program, even when taking an intermediate figurative painting class.

In Illustration, Materials and Methods are glossed over in favour of digital techniques, even though most of the profs prefer traditional work; yet, in the drawing and painting department, you are given more time to acquaint yourself with traditional mediums. But, unlike ateliers, your learning is left up to you and your own research. This is sad, because in order to paint better digitally, you need to truly understand traditional techniques and theories, and be exposed to the possible use of textures via traditional sources, so you can emulate them digitally.

Everyone here in the illustration department seems to prefer flat art and comic styles to academic painting. In truth graphic forms are preferred here in general.

In the illustration program, despite the poor instruction for traditional work, and the now weak drawing instruction as the more open and skilled profs and TAs have left, there are some great students here. But we are learning how to improve on our own, and if we are successful, it is because of the time we are putting into having "conversations with the paint" in parallel to the work required by the school.

I've learned a lot, but I feel I'm still in need of a good mentor to help guide me in improving my drawing and painting skills; as those I felt were great mentors moved on to pursue opportunities elsewhere. It's not the same talking to someone via txt, as it is in person.

Last edited by gildedbarrel : 10-16-2016 at 08:18 PM.
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