New College initiative flourishes along Florida’s creative coast

Funded by a five-year $750,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, New College: Connecting the Arts and Humanities on Florida’s Creative Coast seeks to foster deeper understanding of the arts and humanities through new programs at New College and with local arts organizations and the Cross-College Alliance. Through the expansion of existing public programs and a new series of open seminars, the local community is invited to hear from — and speak with — faculty scholars and artists who are renowned in their fields.

2019 Season Events


Pure Platinum: A Thesis Exhibition
April 18 – May 10 2019
April 18; 5-8 p.m. Isermann Gallery, New College of Florida
M-F 12-5

The New College of Florida Art Department is pleased to present the 2019 Senior Thesis Art Exhibition entitled Pure Platinum. The annual thesis exhibition is the culmination of a year-long studio art research project. This year’s exhibition features mixed media sculpture, painting, and printmaking. It reflects on diverse themes ranging from cultural identity, nostalgia, music in folk culture, and the interaction between humans and technology. This year’s exhibition includes students Elly Bovarnick, Jack Brickhouse, Corinne Leavengood, Jack Micoli, Jamie Moriarty, and Abeer Obaido.

Story Alchemy: A Writing Workshop by Rachel Schaeffer Wolfe
Tuesday April 23 1:30-3 p.m. Jane Bancroft Cook Library Room 141

Local author and host and producer of “The Red Couch” interviews, Rachel Schaeffer Wolfe offers a taste of her unique workshop: Story Alchemy.  Story Alchemy blends Creative Writing with Positive Psychology, and has been taught in longer form at the Omega Institute in New York and Kripalu Center in Massachusetts.

Stories are powerful, especially the ones we tell ourselves. Too often we become the villain or antagonist of our own narratives, grinding out tales of self-doubt, judgment, or self-hatred. When we carry these old beliefs around, we feel weighed down—physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Reclaim your role as the hero or heroine of your personal plot by quieting the inner critic, questioning your assumptions, and applying the method of asking expansive questions. Through the process of guided meditation, writing prompts and generative composition exercises, you will reconnect to your authentic voice, rewrite your narrative and once again become the protagonist of your life story.

This event is free and open to the public.
Seats are Limited so Please RSVP at


Wet Ink
Wet Ink

Wet Ink Ensemble: Kate Soper’s Voices from the Killing Jar
Artist Conversation Thursday, April 25, 5 p.m. Club Sudakoff

Concert Saturday, April 27, 8 p.m. Club Sudakoff, pre-concert talk 7:30 p.m.

Kate Soper’s Ipsa Dixit, which NMNC presented as a work-in-progress in 2015, went on to be a finalist for the 2017 Pulitzer Prize. Wet Ink returns to NMNC to perform Voices from the Killing Jar, another of Soper’s theatrical works. This work from 2010–12 depicts a series of female protagonists caught up in “hopeless situations, inescapable fates, impossible fantasies, and unlucky circumstances.” Soper writes, “The women in ‘Voices’ are bound together by their pain, their silence, their anger, their perception, connected not just via juxtaposition, but through their communal duress. As the narrator of their stories, I empower them by resurrecting their voices, which echo and forge connections across the movements, and by bringing them to life before an audience. I inhabit these voices in part by recalling the emotions and mental states which are the catalysts for their speech and song.” NMNC is thrilled to end our season with these vital musicians performing a work of such timely resonance.

But wait—there’s more! The concert will also feature a new (so new, it doesn’t yet have a title) septet by Wed Ink pianist Eric Wubbels.

“Dense, wild, yet artfully controlled . . .”—The New York Times
For information Please visit


Art History Student-led tour of 18th Century Artworks
Thursday, May 9, 6 p.m. Ringling Museum Galleries (15-18)

Art galleryNew College students will be stationed in front of a selection of artworks in the eighteenth-century galleries of the Ringling Museum of Art (galleries 15-18), ready to give the public the benefit of an unusual final assignment for Professor Katherine Brion’s spring art history class, “Pleasure and Power: Art in the 18th Century.” Dr. Brion has tasked the students with discussing their selected artworks while taking on the role of a relevant eighteenth-century historical figure or type, whether the artist, one of the depicted subjects, an art critic, an art dealer, or someone else entirely. This event is inspired by the efforts of Dr. Melissa Hyde (Professor of Art History, Distinguished Teaching Scholar, and UF Research Foundation Professor at the University of Florida) to bring the Eighteenth Century to life in the recent exhibition Becoming a Woman in the Age of Enlightenment: French Art from the Horvitz Collection. Hyde wrote the central exhibition catalogue essay in the character of a fictional woman artist, “Adèle Pastel.” This type of narrative “promenade” through the exhibition, a device frequently used in eighteenth-century art criticism, was both true to the period and a means of enlivening it for the present-especially when an actor in costume took on the role of Adèle Pastel at the Harn Museum, performing a dramatic reading of the essay as a tour of the actual exhibition.

$15 general admission during Ringling Museum’s “Art after 5” (reduced admission for New College students, faculty and staff). https://www.ringling. org/events/art-after-5

Seeking Project Proposals

The deadline is March 1, 2019, to submit a proposal for a project consistent with the grant’s priorities on inter-institutional collaboration, public access and outreach, and the development of sustainable programs in the arts and humanistic disciplines.

View Seminar Guidelines
View Project Guidelines 

See Previous Mellon Events Here.

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Throughout the year, there will be events related to the initiative. If you would like to get emails to stay up to date on upcoming events and opportunities for involvement, please provide your information here:

additional connections

New Music New College

New Music New College (NMNC) is an extension of the music program at New College that presents five programs of contemporary, avant-garde and experimental music each year.

Read more here

Public Archaeology Lab (PAL)

The New College Public Archaeology Lab (NCPAL) is committed to facilitating education, outreach, and the study of archaeology within a broader anthropological and interdisciplinary context.

Read more here

Previous Mellon Grant Events

A list of past events brought to you by “New College: Connecting the Arts and Humanities on Florida’s Creative Coast.”

Read more here