University General Course Catalog 2022-2023 
    Feb 23, 2024  

Visual Art (Interdisciplinary Arts -Low Residency), M.F.A

The Master of Fine Arts in Interdisciplinary Arts is a focus for creative art making, fostered by critical thinking, with an emphasis on community. The experience and exploration of embodied place is a central element of this distinctive program, encouraging students’ multi-dimensional relationship with their environment both here in the Tahoe Basin and within their own communities. Through a multidisciplinary approach to art making, the program encourages participants to consider how we engage the material and social worlds of our respective environments from personal, to political, to planetary. This low residency program takes advantage of emerging technologies in education to combine two intensive 10-days residency periods each year in beautiful Lake Tahoe, full-time work in the student’s local studio, and a dynamic group of faculty, renowned visiting artists, professional mentors and peers. Residencies bring students, faculty and visiting artists together in a collaborative community to engage, critique, and explore unfamiliar ideas and cross-disciplinary questions. Personalized mentorship and extensive studio time will help students develop the expressive and professional skills to realize their personal visions. The interdisciplinary approach addresses the challenges and responsibilities faced by contemporary artists in an evolving global environment by focusing on the skill development, experimentation, and collaborative dialogue that fosters creative solutions and the practice of art.

Contact Information

Russell Dudley
(775) 831-1314 x7525

Admissions Requirements


15 – 20 images submitted via a single URL in the application (e.g., webpage, Google Drive, Dropbox). If media is password-protected, please include password for viewing.

  • Images must be saved as .jpg, .png or .gif, under 2MB each. The optimal image size for good image quality is a maximum of 1280 x 1280 pixels @ 72 dpi.
  • Images must be correctly rotated for viewing.
  • Name each image with your name and a number, with the numbers corresponding to your inventory list.




  • If your work is best shown via video, you may submit up to 20 minutes of video files by including them in your single URL portfolio link, which can include linking to them directly on the web (Vimeo, YouTube, etc.).
  • If you are working with sound, you may submit up to 10 minutes of audio files by by including them in your single URL portfolio link, which can include linking to them directly on the web (Soundcloud, etc.).
  • With all time-based media, please make sure to indicate Title, Medium, Duration and Date in the inventory list.
  • If media is password-protected, please include password for viewing.

Inventory List

Please create a numbered inventory of the contents of your images or media, including title (in italics), medium, dimensions (height first), date completed, and a thumbnail image of the work in the right-hand margin. The numbers used in the inventory list should correspond to the numbering of your image files. You will upload this through the application as a PDF file, under 2MB.


  1. Title, oil on canvas, 50” x 40”, 2013
  2. Title, wood, aluminum, and plastic, 16” x 20” x 5”, 2014

Artist’s Statement

In 1-2 pages, contextualize your current studio activity and describe how your participation in the low-residency MFA Interdisciplinary Arts will activate your work’s ability to intersect the world in a significant way. Please spend some time talking about why you feel the low-residency program at UNR would be a good fit for your practice. You will upload this through the application as a PDF file, under 500KB.


1–3 pages listing current and recent employment, artistic involvement, and related skills/experience. Can be in resume or paragraph form. You will upload this through the application as a PDF file, under 500KB.

Two Confidential Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation should come from a college-level instructor, or professional mentor or colleague, who can speak to your artistic goals and academic competencies. These letters should attest to your qualifications as an artist for independent study in a graduate context, as well as how successfully you would interact with others in an intense and collaborative learning environment. You will input the names and emails for your recommendations into the application, recommendation requests are automatically generated.


  • For the review process, please submit unofficial transcripts of all previously attended institutions.

Program Objectives/Student Learning Outcomes

Students who graduate with a Master of Fine Arts in Interdisciplinary Arts will:

  • have manifested an articulate and creative idiosyncratic voice, demonstrated in their midway and final exhibition portfolios and defenses, and be aware of the complexities of contest in which their voice participates;
  • be able to design and execute artworks and projects of vision that come from a sustainable practice. Sustainability is understood to be the ability to live a creative and ethical life capable of cultural participation. For example, students will be able to place their practice both in and beyond traditional art venues.
  • have integrated entrepreneurial spirit into their practice and be capable of imaging diverse and creative responses to a variety of opportunities.
  • have a deep understanding of how their individual practices embody a sense of place, and are part of a complex system of intersecting life forms and a multiplicity of community interests.
  • have experienced collaborative art-making, and will be capable of synthesizing a wide variety of perspectives and of working toward a common goal with participants from different disciplines.
  • be able to speak and write about their work and others’ work informed by a fluid set of critical and historical contexts.

I. Program Requirements

B. Studio (15 units)

C. Critical Thinking (15 units)

Select from the following:

F. Electives (for substitution at discretion of Program Director)

II. Total Units

60 units required