Art School Considerations

Art School Considerations (ASC) is designed to help students realize projects that may present health, safety, legal, or other challenges to the artist and/or members of the SAIC community. ASC provides an avenue for students to make and present potentially challenging work on campus and at SAIC sponsored events.

SAIC is committed to fostering interdisciplinary art practices and pushing creative and intellectual boundaries. Understanding that risks to students and the greater SAIC community can arise, ASC establishes a process to review student projects that may present potential health, safety, legal, or other concerns to the student or the SAIC community. The primary objectives of ASC are to:

  • Provide timely guidance regarding the realization of proposed student art in a variety of settings, including the classroom, SAIC gallery spaces, and other SAIC public spaces, as well as off-campus;
  • Engage students in a professional dialogue about aspects of a particular project and how the work can be realized for student success;
  • Identify alternatives that will allow the student to proceed with projects in a way that preserves their vision for the work while mitigating risk to the artist and/or the SAIC community.

Students should consult the ASC Checklist, found below, to determine if a project may present a health, safety, legal or other type of concern. The ASC list should be consulted during the conceptualization phase of a project, and at any point thereafter when details are adjusted. If a project involves any of the items on the checklist, or other potential risks, discuss the project with a faculty member, gallery staff member, or shop staff member most closely associated with the project. Faculty and staff members may make recommendations to the student or refer the proposed project to ASC. Students, faculty, and staff may contact ASC by emailing


Anything You Are Unsure About: ASC is first and foremost a consultation resource of professionals with decades of combined experience in helping students realize ambitious and complex creative projects in a safe and educational manner. Even if a project does not neatly meet any of the criteria mentioned below, consultation requests from students, faculty, and staff on any work which may have safety or other community-related implications are welcome. A representative from ASC will review all inquiries and ensure the right support staff are engaged in responding.

Food, Liquids & Controlled Substances: food, water, alcohol, other liquids, prescriptions and over the counter medications

Chemicals & Hazardous Materials: potentially hazardous materials requiring special ventilation, large amounts of materials/supplies not typically used or that are generally prohibited

Biomatter, Bloodborne Pathogens (BBP), & Organic Materials: live animals, untreated hides, taxidermy, biomatter (living or recently living organisms), bloodborne pathogens (BBP): blood, urine, or other bodily fluids, decomposing materials, plants, soil, sand, rocks

Performative: audience interaction/audience participation, actions that may place duress on the body

Weapons: weapons or objects that resemble weapons

Potentially-Sensitive Content: work which may reasonably be foreseen to result in a strong level of emotional distress or perception of threat in the viewing audience generally or in individual member(s) of an audience

Structures & Kinetics: unprotected sharp edges, points, moving components, pedestals, heavy or unstable objects, installations outside the gallery or classroom, objects hanging from above, building a wall or altering a wall, overhead enclosures (tents, roofs, etc.), window coverings

Electrical & Sound Levels: bare wiring, spliced wires, invented or altered electrical items, sound levels and frequency

Alternative Spaces: SAIC public spaces, stairways, hallways, elevators, sidewalks, exterior facing windows, ceilings, pipes, drop-down, sprinkler systems, any area of the Museum

Fire & Safety: candles, open flames, fire extinguishers, exit signs, alarm systems as artwork, potential tripping hazards, projects that block egress

Community & Courtesy: confidentiality, privacy & anonymity, permissions, copyrights, public interaction