This week, justArts&Culture spoke with Rita Scheer ’20, who was one of the showcased artists at the “New Arts from Home & Abroad” Awarded Student Art Show.


JustArts&Culture: Tell me a bit about yourself and your role in the “New Work from Home and Abroad event”.

Rita Scheer: I’m a senior studying Fine Arts and Business, I currently work in collections at the Rose Art Museum and want to get my Master of Fine Arts after undergrad! This summer, I received a Remis grant and departmental support to be part of the Tyler School of Art and Architecture’s painting intensive program, which was a pivotal experience and really allowed me to build my studio practice and experiment with new materials I hadn’t considered before.

JAC: How did you get involved with this showcase?

RS: The showcase takes place every year, and the department asks that thesis and grant recipients participate — but aside from falling into these categories, it’s a chance for me and others to show work we’ve made over the  years to the professors, and our peers. It’s always exciting to come back to school and to see what new works everyone has created!

JAC: Tell us a bit about your creative process? 

RS: I started using a new material this summer called Yupo paper —  it feels like a very thin plastic sheet — and I use acrylic paint on it, sometimes cutting out areas. This allows me to paint more intuitively than I can with oils, and paper is less rigid than the wooden structure of canvas.

JAC: Do you think you get enough support from the Fine Art department?

RS: The Fine Arts department has always supported me and many of my fellow Studio friends! Professors are always there to help with various proposals, talk about plans for the future, and work through any insecurities about making art. Additionally, the department definitely supports students who want to keep creating over the summer, whether they are enrolling in a program or just need access to the Brandeis studios. Rebecca (studio tech) and Christine (FA admin) are so supportive and are willing to teach new skills,  help students start campus-wide arts activities or work with students on getting departmental or school funding. 

JAC:  Anything else you want to let the students know?

RS: The department is so welcoming; students and professors just want others to get excited about trying new mediums and materials — I’m in senior studio now, doing my thesis, and I’m finding that the space that Brandeis offers is really unique and important, because it’s open to whatever a person can think of creating, and I find that very integral to a program.

                                                                                                                                                 —  Luke Liu