As artists, researchers, and educators,
we at Boston University School of Visual Arts (SVA) value honesty, brave conversation, committed engagement, and informed intellectual and artistic freedom. Curiosity, rigor, and the practice of questioning assumptions are vital to our work. We echo Boston University’s commitment to “welcome and engage the wisdom, creativity, and aspirations of all peoples.” The SVA community is attentive to the importance of showing, discussing, and including artists, educators, and thinkers who represent people and cultures whose contributions may have been minimized or excluded.
We strive, in our classes, to be inclusive of all community members, with an intentional regard for differences of race, ethnicity, national origin, immigration status, gender and gender identity, sexuality, class, ability, and religion and other beliefs. Rather than assume any individual represents a larger group, we recognize that each student has their own experiences. We seek to provide the highest quality education for all students, along with strong support systems so that all can do their best work and contribute to robust and diverse pedagogical environments, inside and outside our program. These principles – in action – are essential to educating contemporary artists and designers.
Diversity • Inclusivity • Equity
In our courses, lecture series, exhibitions, and library, SVA values and is attentive to the importance of showing, discussing, and including artists, designers, and writers who represent people, cultures, and aesthetics historically excluded from Eurocentric or dominant narratives about art and design.
Questioning assumptions is vital to our work as educators, artists and designers. In our teaching and conversations, we will not assume any individual represents a larger group. We seek ways to connect our work with the Center for Antiracist Research at BU. We recognize that structural, systemic forms of oppression have impacted particular students more than others. We strive to be responsive and action-oriented when evaluating the impact of our own policies. We also acknowledge the time, work, and commitment of resources it takes to make well-constructed plans that provide equitable benefit to students, faculty, staff, and alumni in the longer term. We seek to provide the highest quality education for incoming and current students along with strong support systems so that all are able to do their best work.
Brave spaces for critical dialogue
We foster inclusive critique, critical work and critical thinking. We emphasize a critical disposition toward our current cultural situation. We question assumptions. We are a place where relationships are built, and space is made for creative ideas. Teaching and learning are nurtured and thrive. Our artists engage with differences and build empathy through their work and this process of dialogue with each other and the world.