School of Visual & Performing Arts

Department of Art

Thanksgiving Platters & Plates Sale

WCSU ceramics sale Nov. 21 features Thanksgiving plates & platters  

Open house event at WCSU Ceramics Studio to offer ceramic works by student artists       


Hand-crafted platters and plates specially designed to grace Thanksgiving dinner tables will be offered by student artists at Western Connecticut State University during a WCSU Art Department Ceramics Studio open house and sale from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 21.

The department’s Thanksgiving Ceramics Sale, featuring functional plate and platter ware created by WCSU students during ceramics classes this fall, will be at the ceramics studio in Room 017 of White Hall on the university’s Midtown campus, 181 White Street in Danbury. Funds raised from sale of items from the 2019 Thanksgiving Series will support the Art Department ceramics program. A tour of the Ceramics Studio and information about the ceramics process will be available to visitors during the sale.


For more information, contact the Department of Art at (203) 837-8403


Friday, November 15, 2019

Enjoy a creative and entertaining evening combining clay hand building techniques and a live model, with music, wine, and light refreshments. Guided by an experienced artist, this event is open to participants of all levels and backgrounds, from the seasoned to the beginner, to participate in a shared art experience in a fun and relaxed studio environment. Located in the Sculpture Studio, room 248 of the Visual & Performing Arts Center, 43 Lake Ave Extension Danbury, CT 06810. All materials are provided. Ages 21-plus, please.

For more information, contact the WCSU Department of Art at (203) 837-8403.

This program is funded in part by the Danbury Cultural Commission,
Caraluzzi's and Stew Leonard's

Get tickets HERE.

Art Faculty Talk


Tuesday, Nov 12, 2019, 6:00 pm 

Visual & Performing Arts Center, room 108
WCSU, Westside Campus 

Free & Open to the Public, Limited Seating Available

Francis T. Patnaude attended Southern CT State University earning a B.S. in Art Education in 1975. He earned a B.F.A. in Studio Arts from Northern Kentucky University in 1978 and a MFA in Sculpture from Syracuse University in 1982. Fran also earned a certificate in Welding, completing a full Welder Certification program at Northern Kentucky Vocational/ Technical School in Covington, KY. He served as a studio assistant at Studio 70 under the direction of Michael Skop, sculptor, and studied photography under John Daido Loori. After working for five years as an art/welder /fabricator for various artists, Fran began teaching art at Rumsey Hall School in Washington, CT, in 1988, where he is currently the Department Head. In addition to teaching color and design at Western CT State University, he is also developing training methodologies and workshops in the area of creativity. Fran’s artwork consists of fabricated and cast metal sculpture, collage, video, and spatial/environmental music compositions.

RSVP to the Talk HERE

Ellen Harvey

Visiting Artist Lecture

Monday, November 18, 2019, 11:00 am 

Visual & Performing Arts Center, room 144
WCSU, Westside Campus

Free & Open to the Public
Limited Seating Available

Ellen Harvey is a British-born artist living and working in Brooklyn. She is a recipient of numerous awards, among them a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2016.
A graduate of the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program, she also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard College and a J.D. degree from Yale Law School.

Ellen has completed numerous public commissions for New York Percent for Art, New York Arts in Transit, Chicago Transit Authority, the Philadelphia International Airport, San Francisco Airport, and the Federal Art in Architecture program. She recently completed “Atlantis”, a permanent installation commissioned for the Miami Beach Convention Center. Her work is in many collections, including the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Ellen’s work has also been shown extensively in galleries and museums worldwide. Solo museum exhibitions include: The Barnes Foundation, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Bass Museum, the Whitney Museum at Altria in NY, the Groeninge Museum in Belgium, and the Center for Contemporary Art in Poland. Her work will be included in the exhibition “Weather Report”, opening this fall at the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum; and a retrospective of her work will be at the Turner Contemporary in the UK in summer of 2020.

Beverly McIver

Visiting Artist Lecture

Monday, November 4, 2019, 11:00 am 

Visual & Performing Arts Center, room 144
WCSU, Westside Campus

Free & Open to the Public
Limited Seating Available

RSVP to the Lecture HERE

Beverly McIver is the Esbenshade Professor of the Practice of Art, Art History, and Visual Studies at Duke University since 2014. She is also a workshop leader for Creative Capital, a national non-profit that provides awards and advisory services to artists for professional development.

In 2002, Beverly received a Creative Capital Award and is the recipient of many other awards, including in 2017: a Rome Prize Fellowship, the Lifetime Achievement Award from Anyone Can Fly Foundation, and a Purchase Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Previous grants and awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship, Anonymous was a Woman Grant, a Radcliffe Fellowship from Harvard University, and a Louis Comfort Tiffany Award.

Beverly’s works are in corporate, private and museum collections, including the High Museum, Baltimore Museum of Art, and the National Portrait Gallery. She has been reviewed in The New York Times and Huffington Post, and was named one of the “Top Ten in Painting” in Art in America. She is the subject of a feature-film documentary, “Raising Renee”, which played on HBO, was nominated for an Emmy Award, and is now streaming on Amazon Prime. Renee is Beverly’s older sister who is mentally disabled and for whom Beverly is legal guardian. Renee is a frequent subject in her paintings that examine racial, gender, social and occupational identities.


Rudy Gutierrez

Visiting Artist Lecture

Tuesday, October 22, 2019, 11:00 am 

Visual & Performing Arts Center, room 144
WCSU, Westside Campus

Free & Open to the Public
Limited Seating Available

Rudy Gutierrez is an American illustrator and educator born in the Bronx, NY, of Puerto Rican heritage, and raised in Teaneck, NJ. He received his BFA from Pratt Institute, where he is a tenured professor, having taught there since 1990.

His many awards include the Dean Cornwell Recognition Hall of Fame Award, Distinguised Educator in the Arts Award, and a Gold Medal – all from the Society of Illustrators, NY. His children’s books have earned him a Pura Belpre Award, Americas Book Award, Children’s Africana Book Awards - Africa Access Award, Shining Willow Award, and a New York Book Award. His work has been featured and honored by Communication Arts, Step by Step Graphics, Society of Illustrators (NY and LA), Art News, American Illustration, American Artist and Art Direction Magazine.

Rudy’s works have appeared in films, performances, U.S. Postage stamps (Musical Icon Series of Jimi Hendrix), posters, and LP / CD covers. His artwork for Santana’s “Shaman” was used as a set design at the 2002 Super Bowl half-time show and for various products. More recently, his paintings were commissioned for the film “Chasing Trane: The John Coltrane Documentary. Rudy’s works hang in public and private collections, including those of musical icons Carlos Santana, Clive Davis, and Wayne Shorter, among others.

Angela Dufresne

Visiting Artist Lecture

Monday, October 7, 2019, 11:00 am 

Visual & Performing Arts Center, room 144
WCSU, Westside Campus

Free & Open to the Public
Limited Seating Available

Angela Dufresne is a painter originally from Connecticut, raised in Kansas, and now based in Brooklyn. She is currently Associate Professor of Painting at Rhode Island School of Design. She received the first college degree in her lineage, a BFA from Kansas City Art Institute, and earned her MFA from Tyler School of Art.

Since 1995, Angela’s work has been shown throughout the US and in Europe, including exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, Poland, Kemper Museum in Kansas City, Hammer Museum in LA, P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center in NY, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Cleveland Institute of Art, and the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, among many others. She is represented by Yossi Milo Gallery in NYC. Awards and honors include a Guggenheim Fellowship, a National Academy of Arts and Letters Purchase Award, a residency at Yaddo, and two fellowships at Fine Arts Work Center, Provincetown.

Angela’s work has been reviewed extensively in publications including The New York Times, New York Magazine, Art in America, Huffington Post, The Village Voice, The Boston Globe, Hyperallergic, LA Weekly, and The Paris Review.

David Brinley

Visiting Artist Lecture

Tuesday, September 17, 2019, 11:00 am 

Visual & Performing Arts Center, room 144
WCSU, Westside Campus

Free & Open to the Public
Limited Seating Available

David Brinley is an award winning artist and illustrator whose clients include Time magazine, Rolling stone, Newsweek, Sports Illustrated, GQ, the Washington Post, and the Los Angeles and New York Times magazines. As an artist member of the Society of Illustrators NYC since 2004, he has participated as exhibitor and juror for annual exhibitions. His personal works have been shown in galleries in California, including Gallery Nucleus, Creative Arts Center in Burbank, and Robert Berman Gallery.

David’s work has also appeared regularly in industry annuals. These include American Illustration, Communication Arts, Society of Illustrators (NY and LA), Creative Quarterly, and 3 x 3. Recent illustrations were also juried and published in Creative Quarterly 100 Best Annual, Communication Art Photography Annual, and Phillustration, among many others.

A graduate of the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, David received his MFA from the Hartford Art School. He is an Associate Professor of Art and Design at the University of Delaware.

2019 MFA Graduates to Exhibit in NYC

Master of Fine Arts
Thesis Exhibition 2019

Blue Mountain Gallery

Opening Reception:
Thursday, June 20, 5–8 pm

On view: June 18–July 6
Gallery Hours: Tues–Sat, 11 am–6 pm

530 West 25 Street, 4th Floor
New York, New York


The MFA Thesis Exhibition is the capstone experience of the graduate program, demonstrating a personal direction and mastery in the work of the artists. Eight graduate students will present their work this year at Blue Mountain Gallery: 


Dee Rose Barba          Brett M. Colon

Brian Ferreira              Greg Mursko

Mildred Paulino          Dee Dee Perrone

Rima J. Rahal              Andréa Rios


View their work in the Exhibition Catalog

Sip & Sketch

Friday, May 3, 7–9pm

Enjoy a fun and creative evening of drawing from a live model in a relaxed environment while you sip wine and sample assorted snacks in our Drawing Studio (VPA 241) on the 2nd floor of the Visual & Performing Arts Center. Materials are provided but you may bring your own supplies too. All skill levels are welcome. Must be 21+ to attend. $25.00 per person (includes all materials & refreshments). WCSU Alumni get $5 discount (email for discount code)

Sponsored by the Department of Art and the WCSU Alumni Association

Get tickets HERE.

NYC Museum Bus Trip

The Metropolitan Museum of Art &
the Brooklyn Museum

Thursday, April 26, 2017

$10.00 / round trip
Open to all SVPA students (and guests), faculty and staff.
All ART Classes are cancelled for that day. 
Purchase tickets at the VPAC Box Office or online here.
Ticket sales end when the bus is full so be sure to reserve your seat today!
Due to charter reservation and limited seating, refunds will not be available.

Depart from VPAC:
North Arts Entrance Westside Campus
9:00 am sharp

Bus will drop off at:
1) The MET and then continue on to
2) The Brooklyn Museum
(the bus will stay at the Brooklyn Museum until a 4:00 pm when it will go back to The MET to pick everyone up to return back to WCSU.)

Return to WCSU:
From the MET at
5:00 pm sharp

Sponsored by The Department of Art. 
For more information contact the Dept. of Art at 203-837-8403 or the VPAC Box office at 203-837-8732.

Kenny Rivero

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, April 24, 2019, 11:00 am

Kenny Rivero was born and raised in Washington Heights, New York City. He earned a BFA from the School of Visual Arts in 2006 and an MFA from Yale School of Art in 2012. Through painting, drawing, sculpture, and installation, he states, “My work addresses themes of Dominican-American identity, socio-geographic solidarity, cultural and familial expectations, race, and masculinity.” “I produce work that offers viewers a chance to reflect on hope, loss, and memory.”

Kenny’s work has been exhibited in numerous galleries and museums in the US and abroad, including: Pera Museum, Turkey; Stedelijk Museum, Netherlands; The Contemporary Art Museum St Louis; Pérez Art Museum, Miami; Sugar Hill Children’s Museum of Art & Storytelling, New York; El Museo del Barrio, New York; The Delaware Contemporary, Wilmington; and MASS MoCA, North Adams. He has been a guest lecturer and visiting artist at El Museo del Barrio, Bennington College, Middlebury College, NYU, Williams College, and Cooper Union.

A recipient of many awards, Kenny received a Rema Hort Mann Foundation Emerging Artist Grant and a Visiting Scholar position at NYU. He has been awarded residencies at the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Workspace Program, the Roswell Artist in Residence Program, The Fountainhead Residency, The Skowhegan School for Painting and Sculpture, and The Macedonia Institute. Kenny is currently a Lecturer at Yale School of Art and a Teaching Artist at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.