Replacement of UC gallery disappointing

Credit: Jessica Thurston/Art Editor Credit: Jessica Thurston/Art Editor

As upperclassmen may notice now that they have returned to campus, the University Center has gone through a number of changes over the summer. New food vendors mean new kiosks in the second- floor dining area, and the touchscreen information screens that were mounted on the wall next to the Information Desk have been removed. But the change that disappoints us is the changing of the UC Art Gallery into a conference room.

While we understand that conference rooms are a necessity on any university’s campus, especially a growing one like Carnegie Mellon’s, we are upset that the addition of a conference room had to come at the expense of one of the few art galleries on campus.

Space for students to display their work on campus is always limited, especially for non-senior art students as well as those students who are not majoring in art. In addition, the UC Gallery was located in a common area for all of the campus community, allowing students to have their work seen by a diverse group of people who may never make it to the more out-of-the-way and less student work-focused Regina Gouger Miller Gallery in Purnell.

A number of rooms already exist in the UC that could be used for meetings, in addition to numerous conference rooms already scattered in other academic buildings on campus. But creative spaces for students to show their work are not available in many locations over the campus, and by getting rid of the gallery in the UC, the university is limiting the available spaces for art even more.

The removal of the UC Art Gallery is also strengthening the already-existing divisions between students of different majors by sectioning off any creative displays in Purnell and not allowing the rest of the campus to be easily exposed to them.

We hope that the university will help students continue to find places on campus to display their work, and that it will not get rid of any more creative spaces on campus, no matter how important the university may think its need for conference rooms is.