Major Spotlight – Art Department

Wittenberg is all about providing students with the opportunity to experience and learn as many different lessons as possible. The art department wants to contribute to that by getting all Wittenberg students involved within the department.

“Artists are innovators,” Alejandra Gimenez-Berger, the department chair, said. She loves working with art students and seeing them succeed.

Gimenez-Berger said that as an art teacher, you have to “walk a fine line.” She never wants to cut the students’ creativity, but wants them to grow and learn from critiques.

Elizabeth Wetterstroem, a junior double major in studio art and art history, said she loves the art department because a student gets to know their professors on a new level — there’s a lot of hands-on learning and creativity that is put forth in the art department.

The art department offers a Bachelor’s degree in art history or studio art, where a student can concentrate on painting, drawing, ceramics, silver jewelry, photography, digital imagining or graphic design. Once a sophomore or junior determines his/her concentration, the student can decide if he/she wants a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts degree — which is about 20 credits more.

The faculty of the department hopes to develop the bond between fine arts and technology by expanding offerings to art students in hopes to engulf students into a more modern art useful in today’s society with other majors and minors.

Each faculty member in the art department focuses on a specific area of study, but they all pull together as a whole community, so students are well-rounded in art — the Wittenberg way.

“I love the faculty — everyone brings forth a different talent, and there is not one person I do not consider a friend,” Crispin Prebys, the 2D Foundations and Graphic Design professor, said.
Gimenez-Berger said the worst part of the art department is the location.

“People forget we’re here,” she said.

Gimenez-Berger doesn’t wish for the art department to move, but hopes all students realize they are welcomed into the building anytime, and encourages them to come see shows in the Thompson Gallery and Ann Miller Gallery.

“I wish more students could experience an art class,” Prebys said.

Wetterstroem wants to see more students from other departments get involved as well by taking a fun class in the art department, where they can learn something they never would have thought of trying or participating in the Wittenberg Art League (W.A.L.).

Wetterstroem is the president of W.A.L., and said they will be art journaling and do some projects working with clay-tiles, jewelry, zentangle, painting and other workshop events for students. Contact the art department or email Wetterstroem at wetterstroeme@wittenberg.edu for information, if interested.

There will also be an artist talk with Ryan Ramirez, a student from Springfield High School, on Oct. 26 at 4 p.m. in Kissell Auditorium. He will be talking about his various works throughout Springfield, as well as one coming to the Thompson gallery. All of the Wittenberg community is encouraged to come to the event and experience his artwork.

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