Other Joint Statements

Undergraduate Art History Association Statement

Statement on the Fine Arts Library:

Dear Members and Alumni of the Undergraduate Art History Association,

We, the undersigned officers of the Undergraduate Art History Association, are writing to express our ardent opposition to the further removal of materials from the Fine Arts Library.

As current undergraduate students at the University of Texas at Austin and representatives of one of the few student organizations within Fine Arts, we feel an obligation to speak out on behalf of our members and classmates where other student leaders have been silent.

The purpose of our organization is to foster appreciation and engagement with the arts, an end we feel is hampered by the removal of physical space and materials that contribute to education and discovery. From writing labels for our annual student-curated art exhibition to organizing lectures and roundtable discussions, we have personally used library resources for a wide range of activities. In addition to the academic research we are conducting in our courses, libraries are truly our laboratories even beyond the classroom.

Furthermore, we hear, echo, and magnify the overwhelming opposition to the reduction of the FAL by undergraduates both in the College of Fine Arts and across campus. A decision of this magnitude should take our voices into consideration, especially as our tuition dollars finance changes we fundamentally disagree with. Although we recognize the need for new departments in CoFA, we ask that these changes do not endanger our library, the beating heart of our scholarship.

Having already witnessed the removal of the majority of the Fine Arts Library collection—over 75,000 books, music scores, and more—we have asked the administration to preserve our remaining books, for the sake of our education and enrichment.

Respectfully,

Keya Patel, President (B.A. Plan II, Art History, 2019)
Nick Purgett, Vice President (B.A. Art History, 2018)
Mackenzie Nissen, Vice President (B.A. Art History, 2018)
Minsu Kwon, Officer (B.A. Art History, 2019)

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