The state of Wisconsin is home to at least 10 dozen public and private Universities, two-year Institutions/for profit Institutions, specialty, and aesthetics schools. Just about three of these are fine art degree offering Universities and Colleges; namely, the University of Wisconsin-Madison Art Department, the Lawrence University Department of Art, in Appleton, and the Madison Area Technical College Art Department, in Madison. The typical courses offered within the fine arts include painting, sculpture, dance, theatre, architecture, photography and printmaking.
Though coming behind several state capitals as per the number of Institutions offering fine arts, Madison fine art schools are not the least of fine art schools in USA. Moreover, for various reasons, these schools are incubators of great minds in the field of the fine arts both in USA and the world at large. Firstly, Madison city’s natural, physical, infrastructural and architectural beauty seems to be an unconscious fine art teacher to Madison city-dwellers and University students. As they walk or drive through the city’s attractive pavements/roads and visit its museums (including the University of Wisconsin’s Chazen Museum) and galleries, they seem to be infused with an unusual ability to appreciate good art work.
Secondly, both the city of Madison and Madison fine arts schools have been very proactive in organizing art festivals and events. The University of Wisconsin’s Arts Department organizes more than 1500 performing art events each year. This affords students the opportunity to gain useful hands-on-the-job experience to meet the future challenges of professional life.
Madison art and fine art schools graduates are known to be great achievers. The alumni of these schools have distinguished themselves in fields like creative writing, painting and drawing, printing and imaging, photography, sculpture, theatre, architecture, academics etc. Some outstanding alumni of Madison art and fine art schools include Lynne Cheney, Dale Chihuly and Joan Cusack.
Lynne Cheney, the distinguished novelist, scholar and former talk show host did her Ph.D at the University of Wisconsin. As at 2008, she had authored or co-authored 13 books. She served as the 6th Chair of the National Endowment for the Humanities from 1986-1993 and as Lockheed Corporation’s board of directors from 1994 to 2001. As former second lady her influence was felt as she regularly denounced the use of violent and sexually explicit lyrics in popular music.
Dale Chihuly did a Master’s of science in sculpture. In spite of all odds (blinded left eye and dislocated shoulder after accidents) he has nevertheless distinguished himself in glass art. He founded the Pilchuck Glass School near Stanwood, Washington and maintains two retail stores in partnership with MGM Mirage.
Joan Cusack has twice been nominated for Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. She has featured in at least 43 films and 4 other films are under production.
There are many fine Art schools in the United States but Madison fine Art Schools have their own pecularities. Going by the natural landscape, current student enrolment, the quality of staff and the achievements of the alumni, Madison fine art schools are the places to be.