Event Cancellations and Updates

 

May 1, 2020

In an effort to keep our community as safe as possible, and to reduce potential for exposure to COVID-19, SAIC has suspended all campus-sponsored events, including the Spring Undergraduate Exhibition, until further notice in accordance with the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). A dedicated group of faculty and staff, in consultation with departments and deans, are hard at work reimagining ways to showcase end-of-programs virtually, which includes the MFA and Design shows and other end-of-program events. 

Faculty are working with the Dean’s Office to identify appropriate alternative formats for the following programs:
 
ArtBash
Design Show
Fashion Show
Film, Video, New Media, Animation, and Sound Festival
IMPACT Performance Festival
MA in Visual and Critical Studies Exhibition at Co-Prosperity Sphere
MakeWork Showcase
MFA Thesis Exhibition
Senior Expo Exhibition
All BFAW, MFAW, BA, MA, and MS readings and symposia

Programs that are canceled for spring 2020 include:
 
Art Sale
Conversations at the Edge
SITE Galleries Exhibitions
Visiting Artists Program Lectures

All public events beyond May 10 will be evaluated on a three-week rolling basis. Regular updates on any future cancellations will be shared via SAIC’s COVID-19 Event Cancellations and Updates webpage and community emails.

The following shows have been announced:

Visual and Critical Studies Graduate Thesis Symposium
Through May 2
View presentations now
Live Panel Discussions and Q&A:
Saturday, May 2, 1:00–4:00 p.m. CT

Visual and Critical Studies Undergraduate Thesis Symposium
May 7–10
Live Panel Discussions and Q&A:
Friday, May 8, 5:00–6:30 p.m. CT
Saturday, May 9, 5:00–7:00 p.m. CT

ARTBASH
Online Exhibition Launch: Friday, May 8

BFA Writing Program Reading
Saturday, May 9
5:00–8:00 p.m. CT

New Arts Journalism MA Symposium
Saturday, May 9
3:00–7:00 p.m. CT

Art History Senior Thesis Symposium
May 11–12
Monday, May 11, 12:30–2:00 p.m. CT
Tuesday, May 12, 12:30–4:00 p.m. CT

Senior Expo
Online Exhibition Launch: Wednesday, May 13

BFA Show
Online Exhibition Launch: Friday, May 15

Links and more information on how to join these events will be added to saic.edu/shows.

April 6, 2020
Options for Commencement Ceremony

Dear Class of 2020,

I’m writing today to tell you something I wish could be different. The global health crisis has asked so much of you already, and now it demands more.

To ensure the health and safety of you, your classmates and faculty, and your families and friends, we are unable to host the Commencement ceremony in-person as scheduled on Monday, May 11. With Governor Pritzker’s extension of Illinois’s stay-at-home order until at least April 30, and the grim reminder from McCormick Place’s conversion into a field hospital just one-half mile from the Wintrust Arena, our Commencement venue, continuing to plan for an in-person ceremony is no longer feasible. However, we have devised several ways to celebrate the completion of your course of study. Recognizing your achievement remains important; moreover, during this horrible pandemic, rites of passage are perhaps more important than ever.

If you are graduating this spring, you will have three options to celebrate your monumental accomplishment. Soon you will receive additional communication about how to participate, but today, I want to let you know what your options are:

  1. You can attend the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s virtual 2020 Commencement ceremony online.
    The virtual Commencement ceremony will be held on Saturday, May 16, at 8:00 p.m. CST and will include special video remarks and the names of each graduate announced. As a graduating student, you will also have the opportunity to send in a photo of yourself or your work, which will be broadcast with your name and degree during the ceremony. This can be shared with family and friends, and if you and your guests are unable to join us on this date, you will still be able to access the Commencement remarks and this moment of recognition for you and your classmates after the ceremony is complete.
  2. You can attend the in-person 2021 Commencement ceremony in May of next year.
  3. You can attend both the 2020 Commencement ceremony online and the 2021 Commencement ceremony in-person.

I know that the loss of our planned ceremony this year is disappointing to you and your families. It is disappointing to me as well. Having worked in higher education for over 40 years, I know how hard you have worked in your studies, and I know how important it is to recognize your achievement as a community. That is why deans in Students Affairs and Academic Affairs are hard at work to bring you a virtual ceremony this year, and next year, they will work equally hard to celebrate you at the in-person 2021 Commencement ceremony. I hope you will choose to participate in either or both of these important rites of passage.

That is what commencement ceremonies are: rites of passage. As you move from student to alum, the ceremony isn’t your achievement. You are achieving your education already. The rite of passage is your community—classmates and faculty, families and friends—telling you that we recognize your achievement. We applaud you. We celebrate you.

And so we will. This year online; next year in person. Please join us for your celebration.

Elissa Tenny
President

March 23, 2020
SAIC Public Programming Suspended

Dear Friends of SAIC,

We’ve made the difficult decision to suspend all School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) public programs, including those taking place at the Gene Siskel Film Center and Sullivan Galleries, and lectures, screenings, and other events taking place on- or off-campus. We are also closing our campus buildings.

Supporting the health of our students, faculty, staff, and guests has been at the heart of our decision making, and we believe this step is essential to ensuring the well-being of our community, both within and outside of the School, during this unprecedented time.

Thank you for being part of our community. We look forward to welcoming you back on our campus for a talk, exhibition, film screening, or art sale in the near future.

Until then, we wish you a safe and healthy spring.

Significant Changes to Spring 2020 Events

Dear SAIC Community,

As the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) continues to closely monitor the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), we are taking proactive measures to ensure the well-being of our students, faculty, and staff.

In an effort to keep our community as safe as possible, and to reduce potential for exposure to COVID-19, SAIC has suspended all campus-sponsored events, including the Spring Undergraduate Exhibition, until further notice in accordance with the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

We understand that this is disappointing and represents a substantial change to the many ways we usually celebrate the work of SAIC’s talented artists, designers, and scholars.

Be assured that faculty are working with the Dean’s Office to identify appropriate alternative formats for end-of-year and thesis-related events and will provide more information in the coming weeks. This includes the following programs:
 
ArtBash
Design Show
Fashion Show
Film, Video, New Media, Animation, and Sound Festival
IMPACT Performance Festival
MA in Visual and Critical Studies Exhibition at Co-Prosperity Sphere
MakeWork Showcase
MFA Thesis Exhibition
Senior Expo Exhibition
All BFAW, MFAW, BA, MA, and MS readings and symposia

Programs that are canceled for spring 2020 include:
 
Art Sale
Conversations at the Edge
SITE Galleries Exhibitions
Visiting Artists Program Lectures

On or before Monday, April 6, SAIC will provide an update about Commencement. All public events beyond May 10 will be evaluated on a three-week rolling basis. Regular updates on any future cancellations will be shared via SAIC’s COVID-19 Event Cancellations and Updates webpage and community emails.

The health and safety of the SAIC community is our primary concern, and we sincerely appreciate your understanding. Please do not hesitate to reach out to saicinfo@saic.edu with any questions.

Sincerely,
Martin Berger
Provost and Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs