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Announcements

Dr. Christine Renaudin Dept. Chair, Dr. Christine Renaudin Retires: after 32 years of outstanding service to the School of Arts & Humanities!  Click for more info.
Art History major selected as Arts & Humanities commencement speaker Congratulations Evelynn! : Art History major and McNair scholar Evelynn Harra has been selected as the 2022 commencement speaker for the Arts & Humanities ceremony! Click for article.
Class of 2022, Art Dept. Congratulations Art and Art History Graduates!: We proudly celebrate the Class of 2022! Click here for information on Commencement 2022!
Visiting Artists Lecture Series Spring 2022 Announcement Spring 2022 Visiting Artist Lecture Series Announced: Visit our Lecture Series page for more information!  Lectures are free, open to all, and take place Wednesdays 12 - 12:50 PM on Zoom.  Zoom Meeting ID: 820 8544 3152
Dr. Jennifer Bethke Photo Dr. Jennifer Bethke, Interim Art Gallery Director, Interviewed by the Press Democrat: The full interview with the Press Democrat about the University Art Gallery exhibition A Beautiful Mess: Weavers & Knotters of the Vanguard and more info here. 
Dr. Letha Ch'ien  Image Dr. Letha Ch'ien's Interview Featured on Artsy.net: Assistant Professor of Art History Dr. Letha Ch'ien interviewed London-based artist Natalia González Martin, who explores the connection between past and present by using medieval and Renaissance iconography in her paintings that blur the line between past and present. 
Zachary Schomp Image Zachary Schomp's Solo Exhibition Opens Saturday, March 12th!: Zack's exhibitionValentine Avenue, opens at Burb Contemporary in Sacramento this weekend, March 12, 2022!

Welcome!

Welcome to the Sonoma State University Department of Art and Art History. We’re happy you decided to join our inclusive and supportive community of students, staff, and faculty. Together, we work to create opportunities for experimentation, expression, and personal growth.

Our department offers an interdisciplinary arts education with strong foundations in Art Theory, Art History, technical skills, and professional development. After a Covid-19 hiatus, access to our facilities– gallery, foundry, metal shop, wood shop, dark room, lithography studio, individual studio spaces and community garden– has been restored. However, we work to create a balance of remote and face-to-face instruction to best support our students and their specific needs.

Many Art History and Studio Art classes are back in person, including Ceramics, Drawing, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, and Sculpture. Some studio classes, like Media Arts, and a few Art History classes are still currently being offered online by faculty expertly trained in online instruction to make sure you get the education you deserve.

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Statement on Diversity and Social Justice

The art department at Sonoma State University welcomes students of all backgrounds, religious identification, sexual identity, race, and ethnicity. We are working actively to create a diverse, equitable, and inclusive community for learning and creation to which each individual can bring their whole self. We recognize that diversity, equity, and inclusion are not only morally necessary, but benefit everyone. Intellectual and creative work fully flourishes in healthy environments with a range of perspectives and experiences. The faculty also recognize that this happens not through the absence of overt racism and discrimination, but through proactive efforts to create, maintain, and expand diversity, equity, and inclusion.  

The fields of art and art history have not lived up to these ideals historically and presently. Art has served many purposes, some of them less than just. Access to galleries, museums, and art commissions have not been equally distributed. Art history as a discipline has its origins in nineteenth-century nationalism in Europe. Museums grew in and through colonialism. But we are not beholden to the past. We study it because we must do better. 

What are we doing specifically? 

  • We're changing the curriculum. Because representation of diverse artists and cultures isn't enough, art department courses explicitly address issues of gender, race and racism, LGTBQ issues, nationalism, disability, and eco art history in visual culture, art production, and art history. 
  • We commit to hiring an ever more diverse faculty 
  • We promise to address racism, sexism, homophobia, and other forms of discrimination in our community directly and promptly. Violations of the Seawolf Commitment and Code of Conduct including microaggressions will be handled seriously. 

We know that completely disinvesting from white supremacy to embrace the full capaciousness of art and visual culture will take time and require continuous reassessment and action. We are committed to the project.