by Ann Talbott Brown
Director of Arts Education
Tennessee Arts Commission
The Tennessee Arts biennial statewide arts and arts education conference is planned for June 20 and 21 on the campus of Austin Peay State University (APSU) in partnership with the Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts (CECA, or “seek-ah”). Conference activities will utilize several of the buildings on campus, including the new Art + Design Building.
The Art + Design Building is a $21.3 million, 46,000-square-foot building that features faculty office space, general purpose classrooms, a multifunction room, art studios, a photographic studio, a lecture hall, a general art gallery, and a student gallery. Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design, APSU’s Art + Design program offers studies in drawing, digital media, graphic design, illustration, painting, photography, ceramics, printmaking, sculpture, and art education. The Department of Art + Design also houses the Goldsmith Press and Rare Type Collection, an exceptionally large collection of wood letterforms.
Since 1985, CECA has been providing students, the Clarksville community, and the Middle Tennessee region with engaging experiences through the Art + Design, Music, Theatre & Dance, and Creative Writing programs at APSU. CECA brings both emerging and prominent artists from around the nation to Clarksville each year to present concerts and lectures, work directly with students in master classes and workshops, and introduce innovative ways of making or exploring art. CECA also provides undergraduate students with graduate-level experiences and internships that prepare them for the workplace or graduate school. In addition, CECA provides the talented faculty of the arts departments at APSU with research opportunities to enhance their professional growth.
“Both the Tennessee Arts Commission and the Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts at APSU have a long history of elevating the arts in our state, so it’s thrilling for both organizations to collaborate in hosting this conference. I’m especially excited for attendees to visit APSU’s state-of-the-art facilities, meet some of our outstanding faculty, and learn more about CECA’s significance as the only state-designated Center of Excellence in the area of the creative arts,” said Dr. Janice Crews, CECA’s Director.
As in the past, the conference will bring together arts administrators, educators, and artists for a full two days of learning and sharing around the theme of Design Thinking, an approach that can be used in all industries to consider and resolve a variety of issues.
Additional professional development opportunities will include best practices, strategies in arts management and education, lesson demonstrations, collaborative work, networking, and more.
Special Opportunity Grants will be offered beginning March 1, 2018, to those who want to attend the conference. The grant will be applied to conference costs and is offered on a first-come first-served basis. The commuter rate for the conference is $150, and the non-commuter rate is $200, which includes campus accommodations. Registration will open March 15.
My co-chairs Suzanne Lynch and Nieya Wallace Murray and I hope you will mark your calendars and plan to join us in Clarksville.
For more information, please visit our website at www.tnartscommission.org.