The Department of Visual Art at the University of Kansas invites applications for a tenure-track, Assistant Professor position to begin 8/18/23 in the area of Textiles/Fibers with an emphasis in weaving, woven structure, and expertise or experience with digital jacquard weaving. We seek an artist whose practice is materially based and balances a facility with traditional processes and innovative, contemporary approaches including evolving technologies, social practice, and/or recontextualizing material practices historically excluded from the canon.
The ideal candidate’s creative practice relates to ideas of intersectionality, social justice, gender, sexuality and/or addresses issues concerning sustainable, best practices in the field of textiles/fibers and/or the environment writ large. The ideal colleague will participate in our continuous goals to decolonize our pedagogy, promote and encourage diversity of thought, and strengthen the culture of rigorous inquiry and creative research generated by faculty and students, graduate and undergraduate.
The successful candidate will:
- have professional achievement/research activities in a fiber-based studio practice
- have a broad knowledge of traditional and current technologies, concepts, and practices in the field
- develop and teach all levels of undergraduate courses in weaving, introduction to textiles/fibers, advanced independent study, and the history of textiles
- oversee textile/fiber studios
- perform advising responsibilities for graduate and undergrad students and work with Visual Art MFA students across media disciplines
- serve on Department, College, and University committees.
The textile/fiber studios include five large studio classrooms designated for dyeing, screen-printing, sewing, weaving, and quilting. In addition, we maintain a resource room, supply storage area, and a six-station Mac computer lab. Equipment includes many Macomber looms (4-8-16 harnesses), two computerized AVL looms, 12-foot long-arm quilting machine, TC2 Jacquard loom, seventeen Bernina sewing machines, one industrial sewing machine, spinning wheels, carding machines, and other small equipment and tools. Private textile/fiber grad studios are in proximity to the studios with space for four concurrent graduate students focusing on fiber material studies. There are twenty-one to twenty-four graduate students in the comprehensive MFA program across all studio areas including: Ceramics, Expanded Media, Metalsmithing/Jewelry, Painting/Drawing, Printmaking, Sculpture, Textiles/Fibers, Visual Art Education. The KU MFA program is nationally recognized with graduates establishing successful studio practices, teaching positions, and careers in the arts industry.
The University of Kansas has a student population of 28,500 on the main campus in Lawrence, Kansas. The KU Spencer Museum of Art, accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, sustains a culturally diverse, comprehensive collection of more than 47,000 objects. The KU Commons and the Hall Center for the Humanities, invites scholars, practitioners, and students into interdisciplinary dialogue through projects, programs, and opportunities that address issues of global and local relevance. The city of Lawrence has a historic downtown brimming with local business, restaurants, an independent music scene, and a thriving arts culture including the Lawrence Art Center. Lawrence is also home to Haskell Indian Nations University, which has close ties with the University of Kansas.
POSITION OVERVIEW continued:
As the flagship research institution in the state, students come from diverse regional, national, and international communities. Diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging, are an important part of our culture in the Department of Visual Art and part of the Kansas University strategic plan. Applications from underrepresented groups are encouraged to apply noting the value that differences bring to our organization, students, staff, faculty, and community. The successful candidate must be eligible to work in the U.S. by the effective date of the appointment.
The Department of Visual art is housed in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
The College emphasizes interdisciplinary, experiential learning and global awareness, houses a vibrant university wide Honors Program that highlights undergraduate research and service activities, and has created strong affiliations with outstanding cross-disciplinary research centers. Faculty and academic staff have emphasized the importance of continuing and expanding on relationships with centers and entities including the Biodiversity Institute, Kansas Biological Survey, Kansas Geological Survey, the Hall Center for the Humanities, the Life Span Institute, the Institute for Policy and Social Research, the Spencer Museum of Art and the Natural History Museum. These relationships have brought a broad range of disciplines together to pursue and conduct sponsored research and education at the international, national, state, regional and local levels, and have created employment structures in which faculty and academic staff share appointments to emphasize collaboration. College faculty and research staff are welcomed as members in all KU’s designated research centers and institutes. The College is home to internationally recognized scholars and scientists who brought in $44M in research funding in FY 2021, nearly 30% of the total funded research at KU Lawrence.
Kansas City, located forty miles east of Lawrence, has a prospering artist community with galleries, museums (The Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, The Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, The Nelson Atkins Museum) and excellent nonprofit arts organizations such as The Charlotte Street Foundation, Mid-America Arts Alliance, and Studios Inc. In addition, The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and American Jazz Museum are located in the nationally famous 18th and Vine District.
40% RESEARCH: Maintain active research that is well developed in concept and technical execution. Present creative work at national and international venues. Other recognition for research may include competitive research grants, awards, residencies, published writing, presentations at professional conferences, curating, professional or creative engagement with the arts and/or textile field, social practice projects, etc. Commensurate with the expectations of a Research One AAU institution, faculty research must continue to develop through the tenure process and beyond the promotion of full professor.
40% TEACHING: Each semester faculty teach two courses plus contact hours with independent study students, and occasional participation in graduate critiques and reviews as scheduled. Faculty members are expected to strive for excellence in the classroom, encourage the free exchange of diverse views, foster a learning environment that is supportive of individuals from diverse backgrounds, and be available to students as mentor and advisor. Faculty members must also have the capacity to innovate curriculum to meet contemporary needs of the professional field. Faculty teach all levels, from first-year undergraduate students to graduate students, including serving on graduate thesis committees. Faculty members prepare for and attend all class meetings, hold regular office hours, participate in academic advising at undergraduate and graduate levels, and participate in additional facets of graduate and undergraduate education as assigned. Faculty members are expected to adhere to Departmental, College, and University policies on teaching.
20% SERVICE: Serve on Department, School of the Arts, College and/or University committees and actively contribute to the workings of the University community. Attend department faculty meetings as scheduled. Service contributing to the maintenance of the textile studios and equipment is also expected.
Faculty members are expected to carry out their responsibilities in accordance with the Faculty Code of Rights, Responsibilities, and Conduct, currently viewable at: http://policy.ku.edu/FacultyCodeKULawrence/faculty-code-of-rights.
- Master of Fine Art (MFA) or terminal degree in a related field.
- Evidence of a broad knowledge of artistic practice in Textiles/Fibers, with focused expertise on weaving/woven structures, and the philosophical and historical foundations of the field.
- Comprehensive background in traditional and new technologies related to the field and the ability to stay current with developing technologies.
- Demonstrated ability to undertake and maintain a record of significant studio research.
- Evidence of the willingness to work across disciplines and provide insightful and critical input across all areas of studio focused study that comprise the Department of Visual Art (ceramics, expanded media, fibers, jewelry/metalsmithing, painting/drawing, printmaking, sculpture, and visual art education).
- Evidence of successful university level teaching.
- Ability to teach a broad range of courses to diverse students including majors, general education students, non-traditional students, etc.