Welcome to SOFAM

Message from the Director
Welcome to the School of Fine Arts & Music (SOFAM) at the University of Guelph.   In SOFAM, art is not just something you learn about, it’s something that you do, whether as practitioner, scholar, critic, teacher or in a host of other jobs that studying art might lead you to.  Our BA programs in Music, Studio Art and Art History, and the MFA in Studio Art and MA in Art History and Visual Culture, are renowned for their excellence and for the success of their graduates.    SOFAM curricula in all areas, delivered by acclaimed faculty, are designed to combine critical thought and creative practice with crucial opportunities for experiential learning.   The result is that SOFAM graduates are working as artists, musicians, art historians, art and music teachers, gallery administrators, curatorial assistants, and are making their mark in numerous other creative practices and cultural industries. 

SOFAM activities take place all over the University of Guelph campus. While our main offices and a number of our studios are located in historic Zavitz Hall, other art and music studios and classrooms are found in the Alexander, Mackinnon, Blackwood and Fire Hall buildings.  Our student community is involved in the Fine Arts Network (FAN) and the Music Students Association (MSA), as well as the annual Juried Art Show and the ARTHattack art history symposium. SOFAM also has off-campus project spaces dedicated to creative entrepreneurship.  G Gallery, located at 34 Ossington Street (enter from Foxley Place, at the rear of the building) hosts exciting and critically acclaimed exhibitions by contemporary artists, selected by a volunteer board of studio art faculty and alumni from the Guelph MFA and BA Studio Art programs.   Boarding House Gallery, located at 6 Dublin Street South in Guelph, is a public art gallery and artistic partnership between SOFAM and the Art Gallery of Guelph (AGG), which hosts contemporary art exhibitions and other cultural events.  SOFAM students are also involved in music ensembles and members of internationally known, award-winning choirs.  They participate in undergraduate and graduate academic and creative symposia, and enjoy opportunities to attend lectures by well-known visiting speakers.  Each year, SOFAM is proud to host the Dasha Shenkman Lecture in Contemporary Art, which has brought leading figures in the international art world to the University of Guelph.

As Director, I believe that the best way to learn about what art can do, and about what you can do, is through programs that offer you sustained creative critical engagement with both study and practice.   I welcome you to explore the links on this website to find out about our programs, our students and our faculty.  Please keep checking back here, or @uogSOFAM, to find out about the concerts, exhibitions and other activities that SOFAM offers you at the university and beyond -

Dr. Sally Hickson

SOFAM Director

— Sally Hickson, Director