Art Academy of Cincinnati

Sara Relojo, Senior, Illustration Major. Q: What are the best and worst parts about your campus? A: The best part is definitely how accessible it is. Our six-floor building is totally secure and open 24 hours a day, and most upper-classmen get huge, acco

Sara Relojo
Senior, Illustration Major

Q: What are the best and worst parts about your campus?
The best part is definitely how accessible it is. Our six-floor building is totally secure and open 24 hours a day, and most upper-classmen get huge, accommodating studios with windows. Our print facilities are always open, and our student-run gallery gives us all a chance to participate and get exposure. We also have close relationships with our teachers. In a lot of ways, our faculty treat us more like peers than like students. We call them by their first names, and it’s all pretty casual. Being in an intimate community of 200 students and faculty can be a double-edged sword. We just don’t get the depth of experiences here that you would on a campus where social activities are more associated with the school.

Bob Million
Senior, Drawing Major

Q: Where are the best places to unwind around campus?
We have the luxury of our massive downtown area, which is a great way to escape school stress. Older students often go to Kaldi’s for a drink before or after class. Tucker’s and Coffee Emporium are our favorite restaurants for lunch off-campus. Since we all have student studios, we congregate in one studio between classes or late at night before a big project is due. The ping-pong table in our commons is a huge source of entertainment, and doubles matches usually get pretty intense. Faculty games are always great. But Final Fridays are the social activity that really unites us. We have openings in our school galleries and also go to shows at the galleries on Main Street or our off-campus student-run galleries.

Q: What do students know about your school that outsiders don’t?
Lots of outsiders think going to school in Over-the-Rhine is dangerous. But our building is pretty secure, and we have really tried to integrate ourselves into this neighborhood. We’ve already seen a huge improvement in the three years since we’ve moved from Mount Adams. We hope our presence can improve the whole neighborhood without changing the character of OTR.

Q: Describe the cyber culture on your campus.
We use Facebook and MySpace to get the word out about gallery shows. Other than that, we don’t really use online social networks because we’re all in the same building, usually in the same computer lab right next to one another. We have a visual resource center where we have access to cameras, projectors and other technology. Cyber culture usually comes second, with art being our first priority here. We usually just use computers or cyber culture as a means of informing our art.

Cori Ogleton
Junior, Art History Major

Q: Is diversity respected on your campus?
Diversity is improving. I don’t think anyone is treated differently because of their gender and race. Racism is definitely not an issue here. That has a lot to do with the embodiment of the artist, how liberal most of the students and faculty are. As a community, we appreciate individuality and encourage it. Narrowness of mind as far as race, religion, sexual orientation translates into narrowness of mind in a person’s artwork and that’s not what we’re about at the Academy. (The faculty) make a point to expose us to other races, religions, and cultures.

Q: How healthy is your school?
The faculty is pretty adamant about using equipment and media properly and safely. Safety hazards are probably the biggest issue we discuss here, as far as health goes. Working with toxic paints and chemicals is something we don’t take lightly. We use respirators, spray booths and take every precaution we can. The administration tries to be informative about how to be healthy as far as substances and diet goes, but since we are in a working environment, not a living environment, we tend to take our health into our own hands as individuals.”

Scroll to read more News Feature articles


Join CityBeat Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.