BYUtv’s new documentary series, “Art.Work,” which premiered last semester, takes viewers behind the scenes of some of the most creative minds in the College of Fine Arts.
Steve Olpin, director of the film series, explained how he wanted to show viewers the emotion and dedication behind the students’ art work.
“It’s all about passion,” he said. “It’s the spirit of art; this is not just extra credit and fun stuff. The arts are so important to how we find out about each other. Art is really important for your soul.”
Olpin described what it was like filming Camila Nagata, who received a master’s degree in sculpture at BYU and used art as a way to find out about herself.
“She’s using art as a way to try to figure out who she is and trying to give back to the world,” he said.
Olpin added that art professors were there to guide students through the creative process.
“These professors are not just showing up and teaching their classes, but they’re giving their heart and soul and extra time, working on weekends, late nights, just to help mentor these students,” he said.
One episode of the documentary captures the unique atmosphere of BYU’s art studio B66 on campus, where many ceramics students go to put their hands to work and learn.
Von Allen, a ceramics professor at BYU, explained in the documentary how she approached teaching ceramics at the art studio on campus.
“One aspect of ceramics that I wanted to make come alive here was the comradery and the cooperation and the sense that the studio belongs to you, rather than setting up a lot of rules,” she said.
Jared Shores, supervising producer for the project, explained more about BYUtv’s motives behind doing this show.
“The real mission of the program is to show what it’s like to go to art school,” he said. “How is that dynamic different, and how does the passion of an individual drive them in their creative landscape?”
Shores added that for the art students in the documentary, their art is not just work, but also an exploration of their own talents and abilities.
“To these students, this artwork is more of who they are and what they have to do in a passion that is within them,” Shores said. “It’s watching this passion grow and mature in an individual as they’re really just starting this path in their life of finding themselves and finding what their creative talent is.”