The distinctive education offered by the Meadows School of the Arts comes from our belief in a rich mixture of tradition, innovation, and care for the human spirit. The Meadows School exists to provide an education that centers on the study, creation, and analysis of the communication, performing, and visual arts at the undergraduate and graduate levels within a liberal arts environment.
The Meadows School seeks to embed the arts, with their insights into human values and imagination, in the thought processes of those we educate. We work to develop in people the ability to maintain the arts and communication professions at a high level of skill and critical imagination, whether as audiences, performers, practitioners, or scholars. We promote the sheer enjoyment of provocative, feisty, and finely crafted expression, and we cultivate a respect for the legacy by which peoples before us have crystallized their experiences. We develop analytical abilities and a critical consciousness of the power of images in our lives. Meadows feels strongly the duty to illuminate and to be a center of standards, ideals, diversity, and risk-taking in our University and the larger community.
The Meadows School of the Arts, founded through the generosity of Algur H. Meadows, his family, and the Meadows Foundation, is recognized as one of the nation's premier arts schools. It offers intense specialized education in the communication, performing, and visual arts to arts majors, and provides a rich variety of course work for students from other disciplines exploring the arts as part of their liberal arts education.
In addition to working closely with a nationally renowned faculty, Meadows students have access to many eminent visiting professors, artists, and scholars, as well as the annual winners of the Algur H. Meadows Award for Excellence in the Arts. Recipients of the award spend several days in residence at Meadows in personal interaction with students. They have included playwright Edward Albee; filmmaker Ingmar Bergman; dancer and choreographer Martha Graham; television producer and journalist Don Hewitt; actress Angela Lansbury; artist Jacob Lawrence; musician and composer Wynton Marsalis; playwright Arthur Miller; soprano Leontyne Price; cellist and conductor Mstislav Rostropovich; composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim; and dancer and choreographer Paul Taylor. The Meadows School also offers one of the nation's finest university complexes for instruction, performance, and exhibition in art, art history, arts administration, communications, dance, music, and theatre.
The Owen Arts Center houses the Greer Garson Theatre (a classical thrust stage), the Bob Hope Theatre (a proscenium theatre), the Margo Jones Theatre (a black box theatre), Caruth Auditorium (which includes a 51-stop, 3681-pipe Fisk organ), the Charles S. Sharp Performing Arts Studio, the O'Donnell Lecture/Recital Hall, and several smaller performance spaces, as well as classrooms, studios, and rehearsal areas. The Doolin Gallery in the Owen Arts Center and the Pollock Gallery, housed in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center, are the art exhibition spaces of the Division of Art. Student work is exhibited and critiqued in the Doolin Gallery; exhibitions organized in the Pollock Gallery provide students, faculty, staff, and the community with opportunities to experience a thoughtful and wide array of exhibitions representing diverse artists, time periods, and cultures.
The Meadows Museum exhibits one of the finest and most comprehensive collections of Spanish art outside of Spain, including works of such masters as El Greco, Velázquez, Ribera, Montañes, Murillo, Goya, Sorolla, Picasso, Gris, Miró, and Tápies. The Elizabeth Meadows Sculpture Collection includes important works by such modern sculptors as Rodin, Maillol, Lipschitz, Henry Moore, Marini, Giacometti, Noguchi, David Smith, and Claes Oldenburg.
The Umphrey Lee Center serves as home to several of the communication arts areas. A new journalism complex, including a television studio, computer labs, and editing suites, opened in 2002.
The four-story Jake and Nancy Hamon Arts Library is adjacent to the Owen Arts Center and houses all arts library collections, a slide library, an audio/visual center, and the Center for Instructional Technology in the Arts. The G. William Jones Film and Video Collection, a part of the library's holdings, is housed in the Greer Garson Theatre's 3,800-square-foot refrigerated storage vault, with screening rooms also in the building.
All first-year undergraduates spend at least one year in Dedman College before transferring officially to Meadows. Students are assigned an academic adviser in Dedman College based on their intended majors. Arts and communications students have advisers who specialize in those disciplines. In the first year, students combine liberal arts courses with the introductory course requirements of their intended major. After transferring into Meadows, normally in the sophomore year, students continue to combine courses in the major with general education requirements. Meadows considers the General Education Curriculum to be an important part of the education of its students.