Greetings from the Director

The 2016 BFA Exhibition and Catalog displays a broad range of practices by artists, designers, educators and historians—illustrating new and established technologies in material and virtual realms. This exhibition demonstrates the School’s commitment to excellence and innovation in the practice, study, and teaching of the arts and confirms the advantages of professional studio programs taught in conjunction with the interdisciplinary resources of a Research One university. This exhibition confirms that the students and faculty in the School of Art + Design are committed to elevating and sustaining the arts as both a distinct and necessary approach to understanding, as well as a vibrant expression of diverse human experiences. We celebrate our 2016 graduates and the development of their intellectual and artistic goals as they embark on their careers in the arts.

Alan Mette

Professor and Director
School of Art + Design

Class of 2016

Designers' Statement

The arts celebrate different perspectives. As students, we began at the University of Illinois with each of our individual perspectives shaped by different experiences, different interests, and different skills. However, the one thing we all shared was our ability to see the world in a way no one else can.

Over the course of our time here, we have worked to expand our perspectives even further, while simultaneously narrowing our niche areas of practice. We have discovered that, for as much as we tend to internalize our individual identities, we are also very much a product of our immediate environment and the society in which we live. Mirroring this reality, the design of this catalog employs a modular theme, visualizing the fact that while our individual selves are wholes formed of parts, we are also parts of an even greater whole.

The relationships between all of these wholes and parts are continually changing; we are constantly making new realizations, stumbling upon new sources of inspiration, questioning the media to which we are exposed, and challenging the normalcies surrounding our everyday lives. With that in mind, this catalog represents a snapshot of our work at a single point in time. For as much as our work has evolved over the past several years, it will certainly continue to evolve even more over the years to come.