A future for art at Hamline

Hamline arts departments look to the future as Digital Media and Studio Arts begin to merge.

Lydia Meier, Senior Reporter

After the recent faculty vote to accept the proposed new undergraduate curriculum framework at Hamline, many departments find themselves in a new place. Two of these departments are Digital Media Arts (DMA) and Studio Arts, who are beginning the process of merging to become  one. The department will be known as “Digital and Studio Arts,” Professor Allison Baker, the current chair of the Studio Arts department, reports.

Over J-term, faculty from both departments met multiple times to create proposed merged curriculum, departmental learning outcomes and concentrations. DMA Professor Curt Lund stated in an email that at the moment, their proposals are moving through faculty committees.

This semester, they piloted a joint Senior Seminar, which will culminate with a joint Senior Exhibition on May 6, titled “Collective.” Lund says the departments will be integrating feedback from the 2022 graduating class into their new framework.

Over the next few years, the departments will be merging to one department chair and making decisions about shared administrative responsibilities.

“A merger is a big deal, especially putting out new requirements for majors, and we’ll be in a transition period for the next few years as we blend new pathways with folks who are completing the old pathways,” Lund said.

The departments have collaborated on several projects and curricular experiments over the past several years, and Lund says that all the faculty feel positively about the merger.

“The faculty in both departments are all practicing artists, so though we all work in different mediums we have a lot in common in our methodologies and the value that art plays in our lives,” he said.

Baker feels very excited about the merger. 

“I am thrilled that [it] is happening, that’s something that I have been asking for since truly the day that I interviewed at Hamline,” she said. 

Lund says the departments plan to work with students as the merger progresses, but believes that everyone sees the merger as a beneficial decision.


If you are a Hamline student or faculty member seeing changes to your department and would like to share your perspective, reach out to Oracle reporter Lydia Meier at lmeier05@hamline.edu.