Skip to main content

This is your Donation message.

Home » News » Third Year MFAs Experience the Big Apple

Third Year MFAs Experience the Big Apple

Published November 20, 2015

This October, Holly Hanessian’s 3rd Year Seminar class traveled to New York City to meet and interact with artists living and working there. While the students and Professor Hanessian organized and arranged all of the details for the actual trip, this trip was partially funded by the generous donations from the community through their Spark FSU campaign. In addition to this generous support, Ben Bivens and Elece Harrison and Joe and Cindy Johnson granted funding for this trip. Without this support, this trip could never have taken place!


In this weeklong adventure, students were able to visit a city overflowing with artists and galleries and have the unique opportunity of interacting with them. As Nick Schilz explains, “One contemporary museum in particular was a highlight. The MOMA/PS1 was one of the most interesting and current selections of contemporary artists. Aside from the artwork the building itself had an aged and considered aesthetic that really caught my eye. I think I can speak on behalf of everyone that went on the trip that this experience has been rewarding and eye opening.”


MFA ’16 Justine Bumpers agrees that the trip was beneficial in many ways: “The range of different artists, curators and galleries we got to interact with was huge. It was really interesting being able to hear artists from varying backgrounds and ages tell us about their experiences in the art world and passing down some of their knowledge; this was so valuable for all of us to hear.”

And finally one of the MFA class of 2016’s Irene Matthew Parker also left New York with a better sense of the art world and how she may fit within it: “one of my favorite experiences from the trip was visiting the galleries in the Lower East Side. It is more of an up and coming art scene where I saw a wide range of artists and mediums. Because of this trip, we, as artists, now have a greater understanding of our place in the contemporary art world.”


The MFA trip was a complete success, an experience to remember and an opportunity to learn for these students. As an overall assessment of the experience, Nick relays, “As third year MFA graduate students approaching our thesis semester, we were fortunate enough in our fundraising aspirations to meet our goal for a week-long trip to NYC. There were countless moments I could share: from experiencing a large city overflowing with artists, various cultures, and galleries, to the constant movement and flow of a people within an urban metropolis like New York.”


Justine agrees “Aside from the people we met, the galleries and museums were just as important and thrilling for me. These places are meccas for art that I have learned and heard about for years but was never able access. Seeing Eleven Color Photographs by Bruce Nauman was one of those things I have always wanted to do and being able to see them in the Whitney Museum will certainly stay with me forever. I am endlessly thankful to all of our donors and to the department for making this happen!”


Finally, in summation, Irene shared, “We were fortunate enough to meet with artists and curators, as well as visit museums and numerous galleries throughout the city. While it is hard to pick a highlight because we saw an incredible amount while we were there.”