May 3-9, 2002
Back Issues
Casteen discusses employee issues, academic mission
Gift to provide $5M for Arts Grounds
Elwood, key figure in U.Va.’s desegregation, dies
Center promotes value of politics and importance of civic-mindedness

Pedalin’ professor weaned himself from his wheels

Letters -- letter from Eugenio Schettini
Hot Links -- Office of the Architect
Graduate assistants receive teaching awards
Summer camps to keep kids busy
Politics 101: Gov. Warner addresses students
Gift to provide $5M for Arts Grounds

By Bill Sublette

The University has received a $5 million challenge gift from an anonymous donor to encourage support for the Arts Grounds, a proposed complex of new and expanded facilities for U.Va.’s arts programs.

Aimed at spurring completion of individual projects in the proposed arts district, the gift will create the Arts Grounds Challenge Fund. The fund will match contributions of up to $1 million from other donors for any facility envisioned for the Arts Grounds, including theaters, recital halls, galleries and teaching studios within the new and renovated buildings.

Centered on Carr’s Hill, the Arts Grounds will encompass new buildings for the University’s Art Museum, the McIntire Department of Music and the studio art program, as well as a new comprehensive arts library and a new performing arts center.

Major additions and renovations are planned for Campbell Hall, which houses the School of Architecture, and for the Drama building. Fayerweather Hall, a 19th-century gymnasium that now houses the McIntire Department of Art, will be restored and reconfigured to accommodate the art history program. At the center of the complex will be the Arts Common, an open space that includes an outdoor theater on the north slope of Carr’s Hill.

“This gift represents an extraordinary commitment to our vision for the future of the arts,” said President John T. Casteen III. “The Arts Grounds Challenge Fund will provide a powerful incentive for other benefactors to take part in this effort. It represents a significant step toward establishing a new center of creative and intellectual activity that can be shared by all who love the arts.”

Developing the Arts Grounds is one of the goals outlined in U.Va.’s Virginia 2020 long-range planning process. This gift will advance a major fund-raising effort for the complex, which will be financed with a combination of state support, private contributions and institutional resources. With the addition of the Arts Grounds Challenge, the University has received more than $19 million for the Arts Grounds, which is expected to cost $200 million.

By improving and enlarging the facilities now available for the University’s arts programs, the Arts Grounds will enable more students to take courses in the arts and to make the arts an integral part of their experience here, Casteen added. The new complex also will promote creative collaborations among artists in different fields by bringing all of the University’s fine and performing arts programs to the same area.

It is expected to become a major hub of University and community life. In addition to performance spaces for music and theater and galleries for exhibiting works of art, the Arts Grounds will include a café and other public areas where students, faculty and arts patrons can gather before and between arts events. The complex also will encompass a 500-space parking garage and will be within walking distance of other parking facilities.

“As part of our Virginia 2020 long-range planning process, we intend to elevate our arts programs to world-class status,” Casteen said. “At present, we have exceptionally talented students and faculty who are constrained by the limitations of their facilities. Completion of the Arts Grounds will provide an environment that inspires creative and collaborative work and that will make this work accessible to wider audiences.”

By encouraging support for projects in all areas of the arts, the Arts Grounds Challenge Fund will be “a catalyst for achieving great things,” Casteen continued. “We are grateful for the leadership and imagination demonstrated through this generous gift.”


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