The MFA exhibitions, held each spring, are the culmination of student's academic experience. The thesis show, together with its supoorting documentation (slides, statement, etc.) forms the basis upon which the MFA degree is awarded. The fact that a student has passed all courses and maintained the requisite grade point average does not guarantee the awarding of the degree.
Specific dates and the number of shows per year are determined by the Gallery Director in consultation with the degree candidates and the Graduate Coordinator. Each student's Graduate Review Committee must approve the work submitted for exhibition by signing a Thesis Approval Form, which is then forwarded to the Graduate College.
The exhibition must reflect current accepted professional practices in terms of hanging, presentation, and installation. The student's Thesis Review Committee acts as jury for all works, exhibition materials, (announcements, brochures, etc.) and plans. Decisions of the Review Committee are final.
The exhibition is composed of work based upon concepts and issues generated through consultation with the Graduate Review Committees. While it is impossible to specify an exact amount of work required for the show, it is understood that the work will represent a substantial effort. The Graduate Review Committee will judge whether or not a student meets the criteria.
In addition to the work produced for the exhibition, a student's thesis project also includes an exhibition brochure, documentation of work, and an artist's statement (formerly known as the "in lieu of thesis statement"), and a resume. All items must be turned in to the Graduate Coordinator by May 1st. Diplomas will not be awarded to students failing to turn in thesis support materials.
The brochure is either a bi-fold or tri-fold document, printed on high quality card stock. Minimum size is 4"x6". The brochure consists of:
- a condensed (150 word minimum) version of the artist's statement.
- a list of each item in the exhibition indicating title, dimension, and media. This list may be presented as a separate insert.
- one or more full color reproductions of a work from the exhibition.
Documentation of Work
All work included in the MFA exhibition must be documented in the form of slides, or other appropriate means such as CD-ROM, DVD, or videotape. Slides should be labeled (no hand written labels are allowed) with student's name and title at the top, and medium, dimensions, and date at the bottom. A red dot sticker must be placed at the upper right of the image. Any other format must include the same information.
Slides must be presented in a plastic, archival quality sleeve and should have a left hand margin to allow for binding.
The final artist's statement must be at least 1500 words in length, and no longer than 2000 words. A draft should be given to the Graduate Committee Chair for editing prior to handing in the final version. The statement should include a title page with name, MFA and area of specialization, and date. Any footnotes and bibliography should be placed at the end of the document. The statement must be on 25% rag paper and printed on a laser quality printer.
Leave at least a 1.5" left margin, 1" right margin, and 1" top and bottom margins on standard 8.5"x11" pages.
The resume should be current and updated supporting your education, work, and exhibitions.