UW dedicates new Visual Arts Building

Jan 20, 2012

By Sara Hossaini

The University of Wyoming dedicated its new Visual Arts building today.

Art student Beth Cochran loves the new art building, and points out a feature she’s particularly excited about while leading a tour.

“The lockers are brand new and we’re really, really excited. They’re really, really  nice,” Cochran says.

The Visual Arts building is huge, bright and energy efficient. The 79,000 square foot facility includes studios for faculty and staff, a gallery and brand new equipment.

Art Department Chair Ricki Klages also led a tour of the building, highlighting a new light room and advanced safety features, like dedicated rooms for spraying paint.  She says the new building has been a long time coming.

“Wyoming has incredible talent,” Klages says. “I mean, the students that we have in this department who are coming from very, very small towns are going on and doing amazing things with their work. So, Wyoming should never sell itself short in terms of the talented students that we have in art and performing art.”

University President Tom Buchanan says that although millions of dollars have gone toward sciences and energy research, the new art building is an important step towards preparing a well-rounded workforce.

“I think it’s healthy and very positive that we see this kind of investment as a counterbalance. That we remember that education isn’t just about the sciences, it’s also about the arts,” Buchanan says.

The Visual Arts building cost about $33 million dollars to construct.