Langara’s fine arts department reaches out to students with new public art class

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Heather Burgess, a Langara business student and fine arts graduate, is fulfilling her co-op requirement by working with the fine arts department’s new public art class. Photo: Jacquie Richardson.

The Langara fine arts department is expanding their programs to reach out to high school and college arts students, who are ready to move on to the next stage of their careers, but are unsure of what direction to take.

“There are so many different avenues in Vancouver that you could go after [school] that may not seem glamorous or obvious at first,” said Heather Burgess, project facilitator for the upcoming arts lectures and field trips for the 2012 fall semester.

Arts department decides to expand its programs and connect with high school students

After a successful first year of the new public art class, introduced to Langara in fall 2011, the arts department continues to expand with interactive field trips and lectures for high school and college students.

“The idea is to connect with high school students in and around Vancouver and expose them to public art …taught by current fine arts students,” said Burgess, a current Langara business student and fine arts graduate who is working with the public art class to fulfill her co-op requirements.

The field trip is open to high schools in Vancouver with arts programs. The field trip will tour various Canada Line stations where Langara art projects are displayed, such as the Tread Lightly piece, displayed in February of this year, at the Langara 49th Canada Line station. Arts students will be posted at stations where art is displayed to explain what the pieces mean. Burgess said that many of the pieces were inspired by the environment around the station they are featured at.

Project aims to expose students to public art

“I could be wrong, but I don’t think typically high school students are exposed to public art – they’re doing more fine art,” said Burgess.

As well as the field trip for high school students, the arts department plans on hosting entrepreneurs from Vancouver who’ve had success creating a career out of their art, to inspire and help Langara arts students grow ideas of where their careers could go.

“There are some really interesting entrepreneurial people in this city that are doing some cool things. We’re trying to find four or five people to come and talk about different ways to get in the art world that might not seem obvious,” said Burgess.

Reported by Jacquie Richardson

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