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Boston University approaches sustainability through the interconnection and interdependence of environmental, social, and economic factors, and the College of Fine Arts supports BU’s efforts and initiatives to live, work, and create sustainably.

Learn more about some of the ways CFA students, faculty, and alumni are bringing sustainable practices into their work and thoughtfully endeavoring to ensure a healthy and balanced future.

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Booth Theatre

Joan & Edgar Booth Theatre and CFA Production Center Earns LEED Silver Certification

Joan & Edgar Booth Theatre and College of Fine Arts Production Center has been awarded the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Silver Certification for sustainability. The certification validates the facility’s green features, including operations and maintenance of a resource-efficient, healthy, and cost-effective space. 

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Sustainability Seed Grants Will Fund Ideas Ranging from Textbook Lending to Eliminating Dental Supply Waste

A graduate student in the College of Fine Arts’ graphic design program, Nina Gozzi (CFA’23), noticed the large amount of wasted paper from the building’s printing and graphic design studios. This problem inspired her to start Plant Me After Reading, workshops designed to educate people on how to repurpose waste. 

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Aquaponics, Art, and Indigenous Food Sovereignty

In collaboration with BU Sustainability and the Office of Research, the BU Institute for Global Sustainability provides strategic oversight of Campus Climate Lab, where teams are invited to submit research proposals that use the BU campus as a testbed for innovative and equitable sustainability solutions.

One of Spring 2023’s newly funded projects is led by an interdisciplinary team from CFA and BU College of Arts & Sciences. The team displayed multi-media paintings on recycled materials of Wampanoag peoples and their traditional food sources mounted on two tanks. The tanks came from a study aiming to extract data from the potential of algae growth. The team worked with the Wampanoag nation utilizing an interview with interdisciplinary artist and activist Siobhan Growing Elm Brown to investigate methods of combating environmental racism through the affirmation of indigenous sovereignty and food sovereignty.

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Interning with BU Sustainability

Teamwork, collaboration, and the importance of spreading awareness of sustainability efforts are some of the most valuable experiences graphic design major and business administration and management minor Crystal Sealey (CFA’23) has gained from her internship with BU Sustainability. As the point-person for design projects, Crystal’s impact can be seen across campus. The Bronx, New York native created a visual system for the Residential Composting Program, ensuring that her designs clearly shared the necessary information needed to encourage participation and promote non-contamination amongst the BU student body.

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Using Our Junk, Artist Creates Dynamic Sculptures

The former park ranger collects the junk tossed into wildlife reserves, city streets, and points in between, piling the waste into his 2011 Ford pickup so he can transform it into art. Bard says his creations are about more than repurposing trash. As a former park ranger for the US Fish & Wildlife Service, he was fascinated with the way the ocean could give an orange jug of Tide laundry detergent a different, weathered patina. Colors and compositions animate and uplift his work, he says, noting that the world’s trash problem is “already heavy enough in itself.”

“My work is a unique, visual language that speaks directly to the complexities of the American landscape,” he says. “Like the reflection of treetops on the surface of still water, my work captures a variation of reality, altered by perception.”

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Mural, Mural on the Wall

Two student-led art projects installed on campus
both examine sustainability and environmental justice.

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