Members of the Earlham College student body, faculty and staff joined President David Dawson and Board of Trustees Chair Deborah Hull '67 for a short ceremonial groundbreaking ceremony at noon on Fri., Feb. 8, 2013 for Earlham's Visual and Performing Arts Center.
The center, which will be located south of Runyan Center, will provide studio and classroom space for drawing and painting, ceramics, photography, metalwork and weaving; practice rooms and an intimate recital hall for vocal and orchestral music, and a black box theatre. In addition, the center will have a dedicated space for the College’s Javanese gamelan ensemble. Runyan Center's Wilkinson Theatre will continue to be used for mainstage theatrical productions.
“Art enacts unexpected possibilities,” said President Dawson in his remarks at the ceremony, shortly after thanking the Earlham trustees for voting to move the project forward. “This building wasn’t expected and it wasn’t thought possible. We should never believe that the past proscribes the future.”
The Visual and Performing Arts Center, which was announced to a shocked — and jubilant — campus at Dawson’s inauguration in Oct. 2011, is the latest construction project in an ambitious $62.3 million investment in the Earlham campus.
“Our decision is to do whatever is required to offer arts and science facilities that enable the forms of pedagogy and scholarship demanded by those disciplines in the 21st century,” said Dawson in an address to the campus last fall. “This is a sign of the seriousness with which we regard the quality and integrity of our academic program and the level of our commitment to innovating as the movement of knowledge requires.”
Actual construction on the project begins in March 2013 and Earlham expects that the center will be completed in mid-2014.
Learn more about the Fine Arts Center.
Read the full article about the ground-breaking.