At the beginning of Maryville College’s 2014 fall semester, a new club was formed on campus. D’Arte, named after the Italian word for art, is the only art club on campus.
However, d’Arte is not just a club for MC students majoring in art or design. The club seeks to show works of art created by all MC students and to encourage an appreciation for art in all its forms.
“We want it to be a place for anybody who loves and appreciates art to come,” said d’Arte treasurer and MC junior Helena Hofmeyer-Calais,“We want there to be a community where all student interested in art can go regardless of their major.”
“It’s good for people who don’t have time in their majors to take art classes but are still interested in art,” agreed d’Arte cofounder and MC junior Ariana Hansen.
The idea for d’Arte came at the beginning of the year when co-founder Minh Hoàng, a junior, approached Hansen with a single question.
“He took my hand and said, ‘Do you want to start an art club?’” laughed Hansen. “We thought, ‘this is going to be awesome, it’s a great idea.’ So the inception really started with Minh. He reached out to me, we reached out to Helena, and then d’Arte was born.” The creation of d’Arte may have been easy, but turning it into a fully functioning club has been difficult. As a new club, d’Arte was unable to apply for a budget last semester with SGA. D’Arte has no budget to work with, which can make planning events difficult. According to Hofmeyer-Calais, d’Arte initially suffered from a lack of meetings and spotty attendance among those interested in the group. However, the club members are currently working on moving meeting days to a new time in hopes of improving attendance and accommodating to busy students.
Despite these setbacks, d’Arte has managed to make its presence known on the MC campus and strives to become an even more prominent player in the MC community.
“We’d like to be a bridge group and work with other organizations,” said Hofmeyer- Calais. “We want to use art to work with other groups, like art that supports the efforts of GSA or art that ties into the Latino Student Alliance.”
D’Arte has already made efforts to work with other members of the MC community.
During Halloween week, when a number of clubs and organizations worked together to put on an entire week of Halloween activities, d’Arte found ways to get involved with the festivities.
“We did some of the makeup for the BSA Haunted House, and we were at the Day of the Dead Dance,” said Hansen. “We’ve also done face-painting at some of the football games.”
D’Arte’s biggest achievement of the year, however, will be its January student exhibition with a possible silent auction. During J-Term of 2015, d’Arte will be hosting an exhibition featuring artwork made by MC students in the Clayton Center’s Denso Gallery. The event will give MC students a chance to show off works of art ranging from paintings to doodles to any piece of art that they are physically able to house in the gallery. It will also give other MC students an opportunity to see and appreciate what their classmates have created throughout the year.
“Our classmates can do some pretty amazing things,” Hansen said, “I didn’t really realize that until we started this.