Summer Visual Arts Intensive

The May 20th deadline is approaching to apply to the Summer Visual Arts Intensive through the New York Arts Program. The four-week program promises immersion into the NYC art world through interactions with artists, curators, and educators and the explorations of studios, museums, and galleries. To learn more about the program, click here.

To get an insider perspective to what the Sumer Visual Arts Intensive can offer, I interviewed Nikki Grona and Thuy Nguyen, current students in the NY Arts program and participants of the 2013 Summer Visual Arts Intensive.

Taylor Zartman: Give a short description of yourself and your artistic goals.

Nikki Grona: I am a Studio Art major with a focus in Painting from Southwestern University. I will be graduating as soon as I return home at the end of this semester. I’ve always had an interest in textile and fashion design, which was the focus of my paintings for my senior capstone exhibition, and am now working for a fashion designer in Tribeca as her design assistant.

Nikki Grona, NYAP participant.
Nikki Grona, NYAP participant.

Thuy Nguyen: I’m a DePauw University student with a double major in Writing and Studio Art (concentration of fine art photography). I want to continue developing my photography practice while expanding my knowledge to graphic design and illustration. Right now, I’m preparing for a photo exhibition and I’m in the application process for an art/design internship at multiple art and literary publications in the city.

TZ: What was the most important thing you gained from your Visual Arts Summer Intensive experience?

NG: The most important thing I gained from my experience was learning about how to be and live as an artist from the perspectives of artist living in New York. We went on many studio visits and got to see how established artists work and create. I also got the opportunity to work with a jewelry designer for a long, one day internship while I was here and that experience made me want to continue my passion for fashion design.

TN: 1. The knowledge of contemporary art in NYC. By visiting multiple museums and galleries in the five boroughs, the way I view art was constantly shaped and challenged. My visual bank was expanded tremendously from the course. I get a lot of inspiration from the trip for my own work.

2. It cleared the myth about an art career. By attending artists’ talks and getting to know some of them personally, I realized that there are multiple ways to succeed in the art world and I grew more certain about my decision to pursue an art profession.

3. Got to know the amazing city and its people.

TZ: What should applicants to the program be prepared for?

NG: They should prepare for an experience of a lifetime, an unforgettable one. This program will bridge the gap between college and a career for art majors and will help give you insight into career options in your field. It will also allow you to make great friends and connections with many different people. So applicants should prepare for a program that helps students plan for their future careers in the visual arts.

TN: Passion for art and having an open-minded attitude – This is important.

TZ: How do you recommend applicants take advantage of their short time in the city?

NG: I recommend that applicants get out and do as much as they can outside of the program. Visit museums and galleries, attend gallery openings, and experience different areas of the city. The city has a lot to offer and can be very influential, like it was for me.

TN: Be out and about most of the time. However, don’t let the phrase “short time” pressure you. The course can get intense because of the amount of information and art you receive every day, so don’t forget to have sometimes for yourself. Go out alone, sit in a nice café, reflect upon what you saw, and record the experience through drawing, writing, or poetry.

TZ: How did that taste of NYC affect your relationship with the city?

NG: It made me want to come back as soon as possible, and I did. I am currently interning with a couture fashion designer in Tribeca and without the summer program I wouldn’t have been sure about applying for the semester-long program.

TN: Well, I’m here this entire spring semester, this summer, and I will move back after graduation. So I guess my affair with NYC all started from the Visual Art Summer Intensive. Even though everyone’s experience is arbitrary, don’t hesitate to give New York this “first date.” Whether it’s good or bad, I’m can assure you it’s never going to be a forgettable one.

Article and Q & A by Taylor Zartman, NYAP participant and blogger.


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