Facilities for the study of art include well-lighted studios, individual workspaces and excellent equipment to support all media in the curriculum, as well as individual experimentation. Facilities span both new and traditional approaches to studio art, including a woodshop, foundry, ceramic studio, painting and drawing rooms, darkroom and digital photography processes and printers, video and computer-generated imaging labs, digital fabrication tools, virtual and augmented reality, and physical computing. Art students work as broadly and as experimentally as they wish within an environment of open artistic exchange, surrounded by artists in dance, music, theatre, film and communications.
The SMU Reality Lab is a VR/AR and physical computing lab for students and faculty to explore, experiment, and create new media art works. The lab maintains innovative technology made possible by SMU’s Faculty Development Grants and Center for Teaching Excellence, including but not limited to: HTC Vive running on Alienware Aurora, Structure Sensor and Bridge Headset, Merge VR/AR headsets, digital fabrication tools, soldering irons, microcontrollers, sensors and other physical computing components.
The Division of Art has a comprehensive woodshop (B610) for students and faculty to use, outfitted with a table saw, miter saw, band saw, planer, drill press, belt/disk sanders and many handheld power tools. The facilities also have a 4’x8’ CNC for carving shapes and 3d reliefs from a variety of materials including wood, plastics, foam and metals.
The SMU Metal Shop (B611) has 2 MIG welders, 1 TIG welder, an oxyacetylene welding/cutting torch, plasma cutter, chop saw and cold saw. There are 2 sandblasters, metal bending rollers, a 4’ pneumatic metal shear, a large metal grinding wheel and a drill press, as well as many hand tools for preparing and finishing metal.
The SMU Foundry (B613) is comprised of a burnout furnace, a preheating furnace and a main furnace for melting metal. There is also a dedicated wax room (B651) for creating the initial model and dipping room (B670) for creating the ceramic mold used to pour into. We have the capability of working in both bronze and aluminum. The department regularly performs pours outside of classes that students are invited to participate in.
The Division of Art ceramics facilities are available to Art majors, minors and other students enrolled in ceramics courses. They are located on the lower level of Owen Arts Center and include a fabrication studio (OAC B640), a glaze room (OAC B660), and a kiln room (OAC B615), plus shared use with sculpture classes of a kiln yard (B613), decal printing and 3D printing studio (B620), and plaster room (B670) for earthenware, stoneware, and porcelain production. Large equipment for students includes: a Soldner clay mixer (200lb), Peter Pugger (40lb), Brent SR20 slab roller, Bailey slab roller, 3 Brent model El kick wheels, Amaco kick wheel, 11 Brent model B or C electric wheels, 2 Soldner P200 electric wheels, Laguna Pro-X Spray Booth, Enduring Images digital laser printer, 2 Geil downdraft kilns (DLB-40S & DLB-27S), 2 electric test kilns (AIM and Olympic), 4 L&L computerized electric kilns, and a Paragon Dragon24 computerized electric kiln, plus a host of smaller equipment & tools.
Two separate studios (three large intaglio presses) offer a wide variety of creative situations. The primary basement studio houses two large intaglio printing presses, vented hot plate, oversized water tray, vented ink and acid resist removal areas. Specific areas within the studio are dedicated for printing. The studio also utilizes an enclosed acid tray, Platemaker, a number of large work tables, and inking/drying areas, as well as a large array of print/paper storage files. A small separate room across the hallway contains a large aquatinting box and adjacent hotplate needed in the plate preparation process.
The second floor print studio was created to encourage and support editioning projects and prolonged serious endeavors. The studio has natural light and contains a large American French Tool intaglio press and all the typical support equipment/facilities found in print studios.
Additionally, there is a large prep/work room adjacent to the professor’s office that is made available to all classes.
Intaglio etching, drypoint, woodcut, monotype, silkscreen and numerous hybrid combinations are supported. Digital printmaking is also available in separate studios. Invention is encouraged.
The Division of Art photography facilities are located on the second floor of Owen Arts Center and include a Digital Lab (OAC 2731), Chemical Darkroom (OAC 2635), and Lighting Studio (OAC 2730). In our digital lab, students have access to Mac computers loaded with photography, video and new media software including Adobe Creative Cloud (Lightroom, Photoshop, Premiere), Unity, Processing and Arduino. Additionally, students have access to two large-format printers, an Epson SureColor P20000 (64”) and Epson SureColor P10000 (44”), as well as an Epson SureColor P600 (13”) and a flatbed scanner. Our chemical darkroom facilities include a B&W darkroom outfitted with 10 enlargers for creating prints from 35mm, 120, or 4x5 film negatives and an alternative processes room. The lighting studio is equipped with a copy stand, paper backdrops, and lighting equipment suitable for diverse applications and student projects.
SMU Reality Lab
Located in the basement of Owen Arts Center (OAC B651), the SMU Reality Lab is open to all faculty, students and staff taking classes in the Division of Art, and is open to other SMU faculty and students on a case-by-case basis. For more information, please see the full lab policies here. Come visit us!
Exhibition facilities comprise a variety of spaces for the installation of artwork, including the following:
The Pollock Gallery is a logical extension of the studio classroom, and as such, it provides a place for the thoughtful and scholarly presentation and consideration of present and past artists and art forms. The Pollock Gallery provides students, faculty, staff and the surrounding community with opportunities to experience a wide and thought-provoking array of exhibitions representing diverse artists, time periods and cultures, as well as the B.F.A. and M.F.A. qualifying exhibitions.
Additionally, the C.E. and Mary Kathryn Doolin Gallery provides space for the exhibition of student work. Faculty and students can reserve the Doolin Gallery for presentations, reviews and events. Learn more about the Doolin Gallery.
Owen Arts Center
Public art and performance spaces within the Owen Arts Center include Caruth Auditorium, the Bob Hope Theatre, Greer Garson Theatre, Margo Jones Theatre, O’Donnell Lecture-Recital Hall, Sharp Studio, Taubman Atrium and the Doolin Gallery. Students participate in lectures, film screenings, set construction and music lessons and take advantage of opportunities to form relationships and collaborations across many art forms. Learn more about the Owen Arts Center.
The Meadows School and SMU offer excellent library and technological resources, including the Hamon Arts Library, as well as specific facilities within the Division of Art.