The objective of the Sculpture Program is to offer students a complete and well-rounded curriculum in the three dimensional art forms. Creative problem-solving in three-dimensional space and the history of the medium are the primary goals. It is important for the artist/student to be proficient in a wide range of materials and techniques. Concurrently, the student must endeavor to invent and build an effective visual language as an expressive tool for art-making. They will be well versed in contemporary issues and theory related to art making as well as the historical contributions of other artists and institutions and have the skills, knowledge, and confidence to enter into creative careers, and/or successful entry into graduate school.
The sculpture facilities at Southern Miss are continuously improving. A generous Foundation grant allows for the area to purchase new equipment annually and provides for the upkeep of current facilities. In the fall of 2003, the program held a grand opening celebration for its new addition, the Structural Steel Services 3D Arts Building. This space compliments the already existing ceramics lab, metal shop, and foundry with a state of the art wood shop, a plaster/mold making room, dedicated 3D foundations studio, small machine shop, kiln shed, and the Price sculpture studio. Also located within the new expansion is a window-lined critique/exhibition space with a large concrete outdoor patio. Some of the tools students have at their disposal; mig and tig welders, oxy-acetylene torches, several plasma cutters, power roller (48”), box pan break, Beverly sheer, Hossfeld bender, vertical and horizontal band saws (for wood and metal), chop saws (for wood and metal), table saws, power planer, radial arm saw, various pedestal sanders- belt, drum and disc (for both wood and metal), drill presses (for both wood and metal) joiner, milling machine, Speedy melt, low temp melt out kiln, 18”, 24”, and 32” ID blast furnaces, sand casting facilities, English wheel, two electric kilns, salt/wood kiln, gas kilns, raku kiln, Soldner clay mixer, pug mill, extruder, electric wheels, and a slab roller. There are also numerous hand and power tools necessary for the production of almost of any type of sculpture.
Our graduates go on to top notch graduate schools and MFA programs around the country. In additional we have many who open up professional studios in both ceramics and sculpture and enjoy a lifelong commitment to making art objects and supporting artist endeavors. The Department of Art and Design and the College of Arts and Letters also supports a biennial outdoor sculpture competition. The area also hosts the USM Sculpture Guild, the only active arts club in the department.