SDSU plans virtual visual arts showcase

A new online repository will allow students to display their visual art pieces and discuss the challenges of moving their projects online.
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San Diego State University announced Friday that students and faculty are creating an online repository to document how visual artwork projects are being adapted to fit the new reality of distance learning during the pandemic.

While SDSU migrated all courses in March to virtual platforms for the remainder of the school year, many classes that traditionally relied on physical collaboration or access to specialized spaces or equipment — such as art exhibits, performances, plays and recitals — are being reimagined to be delivered remotely, using tools like videos and virtual discussion boards to showcase students’ work.

The audiovisual repository will serve as a platform for students to share their art projects as well as document and discuss the challenges of presenting the work virtually, according to the university.

“Everyone has been challenged to present their art independently in a virtual environment, which is radically different than collaborating with others in a theater, studio, recital hall, or gallery space,” Eric Smigel, chair of SDSU’s fine arts program Arts Alive, said in a press release. “We’d like to provide a platform for the students’ work, but we’re especially interested in how they adapted to this unusual situation.”


The university will also release a short documentary to showcase the creativity and ingenuity of students and faculty during the pandemic.

With COVID-19 putting a stop to in-person classes, collaboration and events, art students across the country have been faced with many the same challenges to move their work online. At the University of Cincinnati College, acting classes that were unable to host in-person performances have produced a video series to showcase students’ work. And at Dartmouth College, professors are working one-on-one with students in their studio-art and music departments to adjust work to an online format.

Betsy Foresman

Written by Betsy Foresman

Betsy Foresman was an education reporter for EdScoop from 2018 through early 2021, where she wrote about the virtues and challenges of innovative technology solutions used in higher education and K-12 spaces. Foresman also covered local government IT for StateScoop, on occasion. Foresman graduated from Texas Christian University in 2018 — go Frogs! — with a BA in journalism and psychology. During her senior year, she worked as an intern at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., and moved back to the capital after completing her degree because, like Shrek, she feels most at home in the swamp. Foresman previously worked at Scoop News Group as an editorial fellow.

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