The department of art and design is showcasing student photography and journals in Stevens Art Gallery from the department’s summer international trip across Europe. The reception is Wednesday Sept. 21 from 4-6 p.m.
From Sept. 13-Oct. 6, Amy Cox, assistant professor of art, led 21 students through Italy, Spain, France and England. Students were required to complete two weeks of intersession before spending four weeks in Europe experiencing what they previously studied. This was a new format for the international art trip.
“The trip was incredibly successful,” Cox said. “It was fun for me to go to class with my students and then travel with them knowing what they learned, talking things through, and have a better experience with them, too.”
The students visited places like the Roman Forum, Pantheon and Cinque Terre in addition to several museums to study and admire the art.
Because the program was shifted to focus more on academics before travel, the group was able to spend more time experiencing culture than studying in a classroom. Cox said she would plan the next trip in a similar fashion in order for students to visit more places.
Justin Manchester attended the trip and said viewing the art overseas after studying it in the classroom helped him understand the pieces better.
“The significance of works are more evident when I see the original in person,” Manchester said. “The size, technical genius and ornate finishes of spaces are lost when viewed on slides in a dark classroom. The brush strokes, colors and detail of paintings can only be truly appreciated when seen in person.”
The art department has consistently conducted overseas programs approximately every four years with students since the early 2000s. According to Cox, Spain was a new addition to the trip because it consisted of unique architecture and museums.
Manchester said traveling to Spain helped him connect with Spanish artists by experiencing its culture and history that contrasted with the other European countries.
“Traveling to Spain opened a door,”’ Manchester said. “While my other travels helped me understand what I have learned, Spain helped me realize what I still have to learn.”
Cox said the department would like to plan international trips for art and design students every two to three years instead of four in order for students to have more opportunities to participate.
“Art and design students go with what they want to do and see specifically,” Cox said. “When you travel with art and design students who are like-minded, they appreciate things, and they photograph things that bring more depth and more meaning to the experience.”