The Fine Arts Society: People, Places, and Events, 2014-15

23 Feb
Fine Arts Society members at the DUMBO Arts Festival, October 2014

Fine Arts Society members at the DUMBO Arts Festival, October 2014


This has been a banner academic year thus far for the Fine Arts Society, the Department of Art History’s CAS student club. The goal of the Society is the creation of a community of NYU students interested in art, art history, and visual culture. Through visits to museums and galleries both within and without New York City as well as walking tours, lectures, symposia, and film screenings, the Fine Arts Society brings art history majors and non-majors together, with lively discussions. Kudos and great thanks to all of the club’s officers and board members for their energy, leadership, commitment, and hard work. This year’s officers are co-presidents Nora Gorman (Art History ’15; a board member last year) and Valerie Itteilag (Art History ‘15), treasurer Alexandra Guglielminetti (Art History/Journalism ’16), secretary Maria Khimulya (Art History ’15), and marketing chair Daria Zlobina (Art History ’15). Board members this year are Sarah Bigler (Art History ’16), Ozana Plemenitash (Art History ’16), Oriana Mansur (Politics ’17), and Elizabeth Fazzare (Art History/Journalism ’15). Great thanks go to Professor Meredith Martin, who guided the club so ably last spring and who is the Society’s faculty adviser this year.

The Society’s Fall 2014 semester got off to a flying start on September 18th with a Meet & Greet that attracted forty students. On September 27th, club members walked fifteen students through open artist studios and galleries at the outdoor DUMBO Arts Festival. The club returned to Brooklyn on October 4th for Brooklyn Arts Museum Free Saturday, when about twenty-five members and students spent the day at the Brooklyn Museum, enjoying live music as they explored the galleries and participated in a variety of free activities.

The club closed October with a timely event, the How to Apply for Internships Panel & Presentation, which was held on the 28th and attracted about twenty students. Five FAS members discussed their varied internship experiences, which included positions at museums and galleries and opportunities in arts journalism and communication, as well as offering advice on applying to different types of institutions in the art world. November 5th brought Meet the Professors: Khera, Geronimus, and Martin. In an informal setting, these three Department of Art History professors discussed their career paths and current research with about twenty undergraduates.

The Society purchased timed tickets so that twenty lucky students could view the sensational exhibition Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs at MoMA on November 7th and 8th. Students concluded the trip with a discussion of the exhibition over lunch. On November 19th, twenty students and faculty enjoyed a lecture by Professor Edward Sullivan, Caribbean Desire in the Era of Impressionism, which was co-sponsored with the Department of Art History’s undergraduate research journal, Ink & Image. And, although finals were just around the corner, six cinephile-art lovers took a break from papers and studying for exams to attend Movie Night on December 6th, when the Society screened La Ville Louvre (1990), an inside look at the museum’s reserves and aspects of its workings after the completion of I.M. Pei’s Pyramide du Louvre.

The Spring 2015 semester promises to be as rich and busy as was fall. On February 12th, the Society kicked off the new semester with Club Fest, an event held for the first time in four years. Plenty of pizza and good conversation were to be had at the Society’s spring Meet & Greet, held on February 18th and attended by ten new members as well as five board members.

Among the events planned for spring include a visit to the recently reopened Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum (March 1st). The Young Career Symposium will follow on March 25th. At this informative event, recent NYU alums will discuss their experiences after graduation, from applying to graduate schools to choosing a career path.

The club is also looking forward to the Judd Foundation Guided Tour, to take place on April 4th. The Judd Foundation in Soho, once the artist’s home, displays a range of his Minimalist art as well as his personal art collection. On April 12th, participants will take in the JR at Ellis Island Exhibition, a 90-minute tour of the exhibition on the south (non-renovated) side of Ellis Island, where the “photograffeur”/artist JR is installing on several interior walls life-size historic photographs of immigrants who passed through Ellis Island, as the Save Ellis Island website explains.

April 15th will bring the popular Professional Career Symposium. A panel of professionals from diverse fields in the art world will discuss their career paths and current positions and responsibilities. As of this writing, one of the confirmed speakers is Renee Vara of Vara Art. On April 25th, the club will reprise last year’s visit to Dia:Beacon, the Dia Art Foundation’s spectacular collection of art from the 1960s to the present located in Beacon, NY, in the beautiful Hudson Valley.

Other events being considered or in the planning stages include a trip to the National Gallery in Washington, D.C., probably at the end of April, to see the acclaimed exhibition Piero di Cosimo: The Poetry of Painting in Renaissance Florence, co-curated by Professor Dennis Geronimus. While in Washington, the students hope to visit other museums and exhibitions on the National Mall. Another event in the planning stages is a tour of a conservation lab.

Students interested in membership in the Fine Arts Society or desiring further information about the club’s activities should contact co-presidents Nora Gorman ( or Valerie Itteilag ( or the Society’s general address ( Please visit the Society’s Facebook page, too.


Kathryn A. Smith


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