The Department of Contemporary Art and Theater and the Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF) are proud of their current joint initiative: The Center for Contemporary Art and Theater. Shepherd University and the Contemporary American Theater Festival are building a series of new facilities to house both the Department of Contemporary Art /Theater and CATF. This new facility will provide shared academic, performance, and production spaces and increase the opportunities for creative interaction between faculty, students, artist, actors, directors, designers, photographers, and playwrights. At this time the first phase of construction on the Center for Contemporary Art has been completed. This facility provides expansive spaces for printmaking, painting and drawing, a computer lab, darkroom, classrooms for art education and photography/computer imagery, along with offices for the faculty and CATF.
Photograph by Jeremy Blaine
The Frank Center for Creative Art houses the graphic design labs, sculpture and art history classrooms. Once all phases of the new Center of Contemporary Art are complete classrooms, studios and offices for CATF and the department of Contemporary Art and Theater will be linked together through connecting patios designed for exhibiting, lounging and working out doors (weather permitting).
Many of the Introduction to Visual Arts classes are held in Reynolds Hall. Students are expected to work in the facility as much as possible during open hours to foster a free exchange of creative energy among peers, faculty and visitors. The Center for Contemporary Art and the Frank Creative Art Center are open from:
- Monday – Thursday // 7 am – midnight
- Friday // 7 am – 6 pm
- Saturday // closed
- Sunday // 5 pm – midnight
The graphic design computer lab is located in the Frank Creative Art Center and houses an array of equipment essential for the professional production work of graphic design. The lab consists of 20 Macintosh workstations, black &white laser printers, two color laser printers, scanners, and a large-format color inkjet plotter. Each computer contains a complete Adobe Font Library, Adobe Design Premium Suite (InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, Dreamweaver, QuarkXPress, Audacity, among many other state-of-the-art applications. The equipment in the lab is updated every three years with the latest hardware. Software updates occur more frequently.
Each computer contains a complete Adobe Font Library, Adobe CS, Macromedia Studio MX, and QuarkXPress, among many other state-of-the-art applications. The equipment in the lab is updated every three years with the latest hardware. Software updates occur more frequently.
Photography/Computer Imagery is housed in the Center for Contemporary Arts and includes a group darkroom, professional studio, and a computer lab.
The group darkroom is equipped with 15 Omega enlargers that can be used to print 35mm, medium, and large format negatives; there is an archival print washer and a print dryer for RC paper. The professional studio consists of medium and large format cameras, state-of-the-art lighting equipment, seamless backgrounds, and a 44-inch large-format color inkjet printer.
The computer lab contains 18 Macintosh iMacs, multiple scanners, a color laser printer, and a 24-inch large-format color inkjet printer. Each computer is equipped with the Adobe Creative Suite (Design Premium), Adobe Lightroom, Final Cut Express, Roxio Toast, and other state-of-the-art applications. The equipment in the lab is updated every three years with the latest hardware; software updates occur more frequently.
Three main studio areas, Painting/Drawing, Printmaking and Sculpture comprise the studio areas.
Painting/Drawing occupies approximately 2 thousand square feet in the Center for Contemporary Art. The space is illuminated with North facing clerestory windows, a large glass garage doors and windows. The concrete floor reassures students that working aggressively and generating a mess are all part of the creative process. There are several white tackable walls for critique and display of finished works.
Because the space is large enough to accommodate more than one activity at a time, faculty embrace the idea of students working along side other classes. In this way students may learn from other faculty and students as they make progress on works for a variety of classes and assignments.
Printmaking is a non-toxic studio housed in the Center for Cotemporary Art. Printmaking in this studio is focused on the use of techniques that are safe and less hazardous to the artist and the environment. Many traditional printmaking techniques have been converted to non-toxic methods and new innovative approaches to non-toxic printmaking are encouraged. The print studio has intaglio presses and lithography presses and the equipment necessary for hand printing within a wide range of processes.
Sculpture is currently housed in the Frank Center for Creative Arts but once phase II of the Center for Contemporary Art is completed sculpture will join the other studios and share a patio for outdoor creation of large scale works. The Frank Center studio is currently utilized primarily for the instruction of clay modeling and plaster casting processes. The scene shop of the Frank Creative Arts Center (CAC) Theater is the shared instructional space for welding and set construction classes.
The Art Education Programs enjoys its own permanent space in the Center for Contemporary Art. Program students are expected to think of themselves as both artists and intellects. Placement within the Center for Contemporary Art grants them access to both realms. The classroom houses a library of useful textbooks and contemporary reference materials and is flanked by studio art classrooms. It is fully stocked with K-12 art supplies and presentation equipment.