The San Antonio College Student Art Guild has been an official campus club, serving art students for over 30 years. Our goal is to create an environment outside the classroom, for students to pursue creative projects, engage in art critical discourse, and build peer relationships that will nurture their creativity and strengthen the transition from student to professional artist.
As a club, the students meet with an advisor to discuss goals and plan activities for the year. Students are encouraged to bring new ideas to the table. Over recent years, students have participated in Chalk It Up, hosted a booth at the King William Fair, curated exhibits for local galleries like High Wire Arts and Second Saturday/ South Flores galleries. They assisted artist Charles POMPA Harrison at his installation for Luminaria, and juried artworks for Alamo Heights middle school students.
Each spring the students take a trip to visit galleries or museums, actively fundraising throughout the year, and voting on their destination. This spring the students raised enough money to visit New York City, touring the Metropolitan Museum, MOMA, The Whitney Museum of American Art and the Museum of Natural History. This was made possible through hours of fundraising, of which the King William Fair played a big part.
As the club advisor, I have observed the deep value these trips and local events have on the characters of the students. Hosting a booth at the King William Fair gave the students real experience as professional artists, selling artworks on commission, with a percentage going to the artist, and another percentage going to the NYC trip fund. They curated their work and work of their peers with new eyes, attaching real financial value to the works, considering time and supplies invested against market salability. Working together to set up tent, tables and art at dawn, they grew with confidence, insight and inspiration.
This experience creates a bonding among the students and an openness to new cultures, giving them the courage and experience to travel or move to new cities later on, and to stay in touch with peers. Several of our students are deciding on Chicago or NYC to complete their BFA/MFA education. Participation in the club transforms dreams into active goals.
- Rebecca Dietz