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finding the right crucible (mfa)... qs for vince, donn

updated wed 4 sep 02


Joy Hought on tue 3 sep 02

I've recently resolved to get an MFA, and your recent comments helped
confirm that I'd made the right decision, for reasons that are right for
me. I still feel pretty naive about what to look for in a program
though. I'll be visiting a few schools, but I don't have unlimited
finances, and I'm wondering what would be the most useful questions to
ask. I can read descriptions of space and lists of equipment as well as
the next plebeian. I know whose work I respect, and I am familiar with
the bigger names at the 'better' schools. But I've met enough
spectacular artists who are crummy, spiteful teachers (and visa versa,
as has been said here already), that I'm hesitant to trust the next
three years of my life to someone/place I've only met/seen once....
Ultimately this a personal problem, but do you have any suggestions for
narrowing the field?

A friend asked, "well, are you interested in making art or craft?" At
this point in my creative development I'm moderately focused (finally!),
but I don't want to have to pigeonhole my work (however it may evolve)
in order to look for a program that I will fit into.

btw, I've heard it said many times that the only reason to get an MFA
is to teach. This was one of the biggest mental obstacles for me,
because I like teaching but I already have enough careers in the fire. I
want to do it not for the (elusive) teaching job, not for the
credentials, but to BE there, in it, see what I'm capable of.

pretending to be working...

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