Alberta University of the Arts

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Coordinates: 51°03′43″N 114°05′29″W / 51.06205°N 114.09143°W / 51.06205; -114.09143 (Alberta University of the Arts)

Alberta University of the Arts
Alberta College of Art and Design 3.jpg
Alberta University of the Arts
Typepublic degree-granting, university [1]
PresidentDr. Daniel Doz[2]
Academic staff
Administrative staff
Students1,323[3] as of fall 2012
UndergraduatesBachelor of Design and Bachelor of Fine Arts
PostgraduatesMasters of Fine Arts in Craft Media
1407 14th Avenue NW
, ,
T2N 4R3
Public transitSAIT/ACAD/Jubilee (C-Train)
ColoursRed      White     
AffiliationsACCC, CCAA, Alberta Colleges Athletics Conference, Alberta Association of Colleges & Technical Institutes, CBIE, NASAD

The Alberta University of the Arts (AUArts), formerly known as Alberta College of Art + Design (ACAD) (before January 2019) and as the Alberta College of Art, is a publicly funded Canadian degree-granting art and design university [1] located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The university's beginnings date back to the founding of the Provincial Institute of Technology and Art (PITA) in 1916. Beginning with evening and Saturday classes, day classes were offered starting in 1926 with Lars Haukaness appointed as the first Head of the Art Department.[4] In 1960, PITA was renamed the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) and the Art Department was renamed the Alberta College of Art (ACA).

In 1973, after eight years of planning and construction, the Alberta College of Art moved into a brand new purpose-built building designed by architectural firm Cohos, Delesalle and Evamy, on the edge of Calgary's North Hill, next to the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium.[5][6]

The Alberta College of Art gained autonomy from SAIT in 1985, and in 1995 amended its name to become the Alberta College of Art and Design.[7]

On February 1, 2019, ACAD officially became the Alberta University of the Arts.[8]

AUArts' degree programs are housed within four administrative schools:

  • The School of Craft + Emerging Media (ceramics, fibre, glass, jewellery + metals, and media arts)
  • The School of Visual Arts (drawing, painting, print media, photography, and sculpture)
  • The School of Communication Design
  • The School of Critical + Creative Studies (non-studio academic courses)[9]

Academic status[edit]

As a college, the institution had the authority to grant certificates and diplomas. In 1995 the Alberta Government authorized granting the degree of Bachelor of Fine Arts[7] and in 2000 gave authority to grant the Bachelor of Design degree.[7] The Master of Fine Arts in Craft Media was launched in 2015 with the inaugural class receiving their degrees in May 2017.

In March 2018, ACAD was named a university by the Minister of Advanced Education.[10] It is the only institution in the province to offer and confer university-level undergraduate and now, graduate degree programs in art, craft, and design.[10] On January 17, 2019, the Government of Alberta announced that ACAD was to become the Alberta University of the Arts (abbreviated as AUArts). The transition began on the same day while the name and university status became effective formally on February 1, 2019.[11]

Library and galleries[edit]

AUArts' Luke Lindoe Library is named after alumnus, instructor, and founder of the Ceramics Department Luke Lindoe, and maintains a collection of over 25,000 art and design-related titles.[12] The university is also home to two professional galleries, the Illingworth Kerr Gallery (IKG) and the Marion Nicoll Gallery (MNG), and nine student-run gallery and pop-up spaces.[13]

The Alberta College or Art Gallery was renamed after artist and teacher Illingworth Kerr when ACA moved into its new home (current location) in 1973, expanding into a 9,500 square-foot facility.[14]

The MNG, named after artist and teacher Marion Nicoll, is based on a not-for-profit model and run by the AUArts Students' Association.[15] MNG manages three locations (in AUArts' Main Mall, the ACAD/Jubilee LRT station hallway, and in downtown Calgary's Arts Commons +15 walkway), and focuses on exhibiting student work.[13] AUArtSA also manages nine student exhibition spaces on campus.[16]

Lodgepole Center[edit]

Given its name by AUArts' Elder Council to reflect the supportive nature of the lodgepole, traditionally placed at the centre of the tipi to carry the weight of the covering, AUArts' indigenous resource centre, the Lodgepole Center, officially opened on campus in September 2016.[17] An all-inclusive space, the Lodgepole Center facilitates Elder advising and support, traditional ceremonies, and workshops, and is a quiet study, smudge, and gathering space.[17]

Notable alumni[edit]

Notable professors[edit]



See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "ACAD University Status". Retrieved 2018-03-11.
  2. ^ President, Dr. Daniel Doz Archived 2013-07-08 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ "ACAD Annual Report 2011-2012" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-02-16.
  4. ^ Greenfield, Val (1985). "Introduction" in A Measure of Success: Graduates of the Alberta College of Art 1963-1984. Calgary: Art College of Art Gallery. p. 6.
  5. ^ Laviolette, Mary-Beth (2006). An Alberta Art Chronicle: adventures in recent and contemporary art. Canmore: Altitude Publishing. pp. 275. ISBN 9781551539409.
  6. ^ Laviolette, Mary-Beth (2001). 75 Years of Art: Alberta College of Art + Design 1926-2001. Calgary: Alberta College of Art + Design. p. 32. ISBN 1895086094.
  7. ^ a b c ACAD History Archived 2015-06-13 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "After 92 years, Alberta College of Arts and Design gets new name". January 17, 2019. Retrieved February 5, 2019.
  9. ^ "ACAD's Four Schools".
  10. ^ a b "The Alberta College of Art + Design is Now a University - Alberta University of the Arts". Retrieved 1 April 2019.
  11. ^ Government of Alberta (2019-01-17). "Announcing Alberta's newest university". Archived from the original on 2019-01-21. Retrieved 2019-01-23.
  12. ^ Laviolette, Mary-Beth (2006). Alberta Art Chronicle: adventures in recent and contemporary art. Canmore: Altitude Publishing. pp. 55. ISBN 9781551539409.
  13. ^ a b "Galleries on campus | Alberta College of Art and Design". Retrieved 2017-11-06.
  14. ^ Laviolette, Mary-Beth (2006). Alberta Art Chronicle: adventures in recent and contemporary art. Canmore: Altitude Publishing. pp. 275. ISBN 9781551539409.
  15. ^ "Marion Nicoll Gallery".
  16. ^ "Student-Run Galleries".
  17. ^ a b "Lodgepole Center".
  18. ^ "ACAD Faculty". Alberta College of Art and Design. Retrieved March 10, 2018.

External links[edit]