The Maine College of Art is situated in the city of Portland in Maine. It is one of Maine’s oldest institutes for arts education. The Maine College of Art is an independent institution, unassociated with any larger academic or arts institutions.
Origin and development of Maine College of Art:
The Maine College of Art was founded in 1882 as a part of the Portland Society of Art. The first organized curriculum at the college was begun in 1911. In 1972 the name of the institution was changed to Portland School of Art. It received accreditation from the NASAD and NEASC in 1973. The school was separated from the Portland Society of Art in 1982. In 1992 the name of the institute was changed to Maine College of Art. The establishment of the Maine College of Art has been of great advantage to the city of Portland. The college has aided the city through a series of renovations of historic buildings. The main amenities of the college are located in an old department store which had become one of the most daunting empty storefronts of the city. The city’s old public library, the Baxter Building has been converted to a collection of photography and computer labs by the Maine College of Art. The Maine College of Art is also the largest employer of visual artists in the state.
Academic Programs at Maine College of Art:
Maine College of Art offers undergraduate as well as graduate programs. The undergraduate program is well known for its foundation in drawing and design. The first two years are spent by students in acquiring a broad grounding of their respective fields. The students are provided with valuable feedback, helped to understand their strengths and areas of growth as well as encouraged to develop their own opinions and viewpoints. The four year BFA degree is awarded in eleven subjects: Ceramics, Graphic Design, Illustration, Metalsmithing & Jewelry, New Media, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture, Woodworking & Furniture Design and self Design. Minors are available in Art History, Drawing and Illustration.
Graduate Programs are for two years. The program is for Studio Arts and meant for emerging artists. The graduate program is based on an interdisciplinary approach to enable students to think beyond boundaries and combine studio practice with conceptual and interdisciplinary theory.