S  P  A  C  E

Visual Arts Department Collaborative 9th Grade Exhibition

“Drawing Space” celebrates the Visual Art Department’s freshman year foundation learning by integrating
the design, craft, and skill experienced in 2D Visual Fundamentals, 3D Visual Fundamentals, and Drawing courses at NMSA.  


The Visual Arts Department and this exhibition are supported in part by the generosity of the Hayes Foundation, the Stranahan Foundation,
the National Endowment for the Arts, and New Mexico Arts, a Division of the Department of Cultural Affairs.
(note:  this virtual exhibition is best viewed on and formatted for computer screen)

Drawing Space affords each ninth grade cohort with an opportunity to understand their work in sculpture and drawing as fluid and integrated.  In solo and collaborative projects, NMSA’s ninth grade Visual Arts students develop technique with new materials while gaining awareness of how to utilize the visual elements and principles of design in intentional compositions.  This year’s freshman Visual Artists are exhibiting a kaleidoscopic collaborative visual collage reflecting experiments with line, light, and space through sculpture, photography and drawing.  Through the use of flexible rudimentary materials, including string, yarn, wire, thread, graphite, charcoal, paper, and chalk, these young artists explored line in sculpture and drawing to construct intriguing forms and planes uniting 2D and 3D space.  

Giving and receiving feedback is how we learn in the visual arts.  Yet, daily connections and honest critiques require and offer chances to build trust.  Drawing Space is meant to provide a working opportunity for our freshman Visual Artists to come to know one another as individuals and to begin to form a sense of their group identity and awareness of what they can create together as they develop this trust.  We hope these students will be there for one another for years to come as part of one another’s creative network. 

Collaboration is a fundamental skill integral to twenty-first century creative arts practice and careers.  We collaborate to arrive at something we could not have manifested on our own.  Collaboration is also something that can be taught, guided, and structured so that our young artists are able to improve this crucial skillset as they grow and learn through the arts.  For this reason, the 4-year Visual Arts curriculum at NMSA embeds collaborative learning into the sequence of each year’s objectives and into each studio course taken.  Students gain insight into why working with others is beneficial and also how to navigate challenges that naturally arise within the context of a structured and instructor supported process. While on this journey, students learn to self-express, listen, compromise, and connect on outcomes that are beyond themselves and often learn to negotiate the discomfort that might accompany working with others on a shared goal. 

Collaboration takes us to new unexpected places!  This year’s “Drawing Space” specifically involves collaboration in the virtual world for a virtual exhibition.  After completing their own works, students curated compositions composed from their collective class pool of digital imagery.  Through the process of collaborative curation, these once physical works have been configured into dynamic pairings that challenge the relationship between line and space. 

Student Gallery