The Department of Fine Arts has its own facility in East Campus Hall, with studios and lecture theatres where almost all of the Fine Arts courses are conducted. Although the University of Waterloo is a big campus, students in Fine Arts get to experience a very personal sense of community with their fellow students and the faculty. There are two gallery spaces within East Campus Hall, one for student exhibitions and one that features exhibitions by professional artists from across the country. The department regularly brings in visiting artists and scholars to talk to students and share their expertise.
The department encourages a free exchange of views in its classes and schedules regular critiques (both formal and informal), by faculty, visiting artists and critics, and by the students themselves. Faculty members make it a point to assign projects that will help students to understand different approaches to art-making. The great diversity in the individual directions taken by graduating students in their final projects is a common source of pride for this department’s teaching staff.
The Department of Fine Arts regularly organizes trips to visit galleries in Chicago, New York, Montreal and Toronto and has conducted off-campus courses in locations such as Italy, France, England and Mexico.