The major philosophical hallmark of the CSULB College of the Arts (COTA) is an unshakable commitment to teaching theory and skills together - we treat them as an inseparable pair. We teach and create at CSULB under the belief that theory without skills or skills without theory both lead to weak art. Our students are challenged to hone their academic, analytical and observational minds while stretching and flexing their skills and talent in the studios and rehearsal rooms, on our stages, at the draft boards, on set, or in front of the computer. I hope you'll find the information and images you are looking for on our College and Department websites, but if not please give us a call or send us an e-mail. There's nothing we enjoy more than talking with students, parents, alumni, patrons and friends about what we do here.
The College of the Arts (COTA) at CSULB is California's largest and most comprehensive publicly funded school for the arts, with approximately 3,500 undergraduate and graduate majors. It includes the School of Art, the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music, the departments of Dance, Design, Film and Electronic Arts, and Theatre Arts, as well as the University Art Museum (UAM), and the Carpenter Performing Arts Center (CPAC).
The college features seven different performance venues seating 2,500 patrons, and multiple exhibition spaces offering more than 9,600 sq ft of designated areas for art and design installations and shows. These facilities annually house approximately 500 arts and arts-focused events, welcoming more than 150,000 audience members and exhibit visitors to the CSULB campus.
Within the College of the Arts
The School of Art is the largest department on the CSULB campus, and one of the largest visual arts programs in the country. More people study art and design at CSULB than at any other public university in the nation. Its faculty and alumni enjoy national and international recognition and reputations. The CSULB Ceramics program was recently featured prominently in a December 2012 article in Art in America. Many works by our studio professors and program heads have been acquired by prestigious museums and purchased by prominent art collectors. Illustration Alumnus Jennifer Yuh directed Kung Fu Panda 2, and alumnus Adonna Khare recently received $200,000 as the winner of the 2012ArtPrize competition.
The Bob Cole Conservatory of Music prides itself on the combination of practical and theoretical experience that its students receive in all areas of Music Performance, Music Education and Music Composition and Theory. The excellence of Cole Conservatory students and ensembles is regularly showcased on a national and international level: the CSULB Chamber Choir was recently invited to perform in Yale and Mexico City, the Wind Symphony regularly earns prestigious invitations to regional conferences and both the vocal and instrumental jazz ensembles earned the top prizes at the Next Generation Jazz Competition for colleges and universities, earning performance spots at the legendary Monterey Jazz Festival.
CSULB's Department of Dance is regularly ranked among the top ten educational programs in the nation. Its impressive dance facilities include 93,000 sq. ft of studios and a 250-seat theatre. Because of the professional and personal ties of its highly experienced faculty, CSULB has been granted permission to restage works by Martha Graham and Twyla Tharp, a highly unusual honor for a university dance program. In fall 2012, the Department of Dance hosted legendary choreographer Bill T. Jones, who staged one of his pieces on CSULB dancers. Recent graduate Chris Phan was selected by Mr. Jones for a prestigious New York apprenticeship with his company.
The Design Department at Cal State Long Beach is recognized as one of the top design schools in the nation, with practical-hands on programs offered in Interior Architectural Design and Industrial Design. In 2010, three of our Interior Architectural students were among the five finalists in the F3 Student Furniture Design Competion. In 2008 Avery Holleman earned $20,000 and the Chairman's Award, selected by Bill Gates, in Microsoft's Next-Gen PC Design Competition. This past semester, a team of design students were tasked with the complete interior redesign of a major campus corridor and study area. The new space will be unveiled in Fall 2013.
The CSULB Film and Electronic Arts department is one of the strongest undergraduate training programs for undergraduate filmmakers in the nation. It is a regular top contributor to the annual CSU Media Festival. In the 2012 CSU Media Festival, CSULB senior Seth Craven received first place wins in the narrative film category and in the Audience Choice Award and was the co-winner of Best in Show. Alumni include directors David Twohy and Mark Steven Johnson, producer Guy Bee and filmmaking legend Steven Spielberg.
The Department of Theatre Arts at Cal State Long Beach is large, diverse and extremely active. Each year, 10 mainstage productions are presented, along with more than 20 student-produced one act "showcases." It is one of two programs in the nation that offers a joint MFA/MBA in Theatre Management. The other is Yale. California Repertory Company, the professional production arm of the graduate program, performs in the Royal Theatre aboard the Queen Mary, and has been repeatedly honored by local critics for the strength of its dramaturgy and ensembles. In Fall 2012 California Repertory Company was given permission by Stephen Sondheim and by the estate of the late Charles Bukowski to present an original workshop production entitled B.S.: Bukowski/Sondheim.
The University Art Museum enjoyed unprecedented success and recognition recently when the American chapter of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA) named its 2010 exhibit “Perpetual Motion: Michael Goldberg” as the “Best Show in a University Gallery.” This national honor is one of the most prestigious awards offered for museums. The University Art Museum was one of only 3 California museums or galleries recognized for achievement by AICA during its 2011 awards. The UAM is one of the leaders in presenting exhibitions and projects that both push the boundaries of the definition of art and document important trends of the visual arts in the 20th century. Ranking among the top ten-percent of the nation’s 16,000 plus museums, the UAM maintains a permanent collection of works on paper and site specific outdoor sculpture that has brought recognition to the university and the city of Long Beach.The Carpenter Center is an elegant 1100-seat performance hall, with a 15-year tradition of outstanding arts and entertainment events presented by the University, guest artists, resident companies and the community at large. The eclectic roster of world-class artists who have performed at the Carpenter Center include Arturo Sandoval, Seth McFarlane, Garrison Keilor, Pilobolus, LA Opera, Musical Theatre West, The Vienna Boys Choir, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, John Cleese, Harry Shearer, Jane Fonda, Hal Holbrook and - of course - Richard Carpenter.