NWSA BFA Graduates Receive Generous Scholarship from De La Cruz Collection and the Knight Foundation to Augment Artistic Training

Students and teachers seating in a classroom

Twelve of the graduates from the New World School of the Arts BFA class of 2022, applied for a full scholarship by Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz (de la Cruz Collection), in partnership with the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, to participate in a month-long artists residency program at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. The generous scholarship includes all expenses associated with travel, housing, and an $2,500 stipend for each participant.

“The de la Cruzes and the Knight Foundation have demonstrated a unique and profound commitment to the arts in our community and they recognize this starts with young artists,” said Dr. Jeffrey Hodgson, Provost, and CEO of New World School of the Arts. “Their support of our graduating students helps them continue their development on the pathway to becoming practicing artists. It can’t be emphasized enough how pivotal this opportunity is for these burgeoning artists.”

“We want to expose young people to new things, let them visit museums and see Broadway shows, and give them the chance to immerse themselves in the energy of the City,” explained Rosa de la Cruz while Carlos de la Cruz noted, “we want them to keep an open mind and take in what they see.”

Students have access to a private studio in a location central to New York City’s gallery districts, museums and alternative hubs for culture and technology. Daily studio visits from renowned artists, curators and theorists support an ongoing discourse among an international community of fellow artists. In addition to concentrated work in the studio, NWSA participating artists attend lectures, gallery walks, museum visits and workshops that support a professional art practice.

“This residency program provides the opportunity for shared and individual experiences that will broaden perspectives and open minds to new and myriad possibilities. For some, it will be their first time outside of Miami.  What a perfect way to enhance a young artist’s ability to see and interpret the world,” said Victoria Rogers, Knight Foundation’s Vice President|Arts. “I can’t wait to see how this will influence their practices.”

NWSA visual arts faculty member Aramis O’Reilly joined the student during the first week of the program, bringing value to the classroom upon his return from SVA and enhancing the curriculum of the visual arts division. “As a faculty member I have established a history and familiarity with our students’ work, especially those with whom I have worked most closely,” explained O’Reilly. “I have a base model by which I can see and measure the changes in their work as they go through the program.”

This intensive studio residency, which runs through July 1, 2022, is hosted by the School of Visual Arts’ MFA Fine Arts Department and it is designed for artists working in both medium-specific and cross-platform modes of production that aim for the intersection of art and ideas. Taught by distinguished members of the MFA Fine Arts faculty, the residency fosters a culture of rigorous practice and contemporary thought.

Along with the Knight Foundation, de la Cruz Collection has been an integral supporter of the New World School of the Arts Summer Travel Abroad Program offering funding and expertise. Through this initiative, the college visual arts graduating class had the opportunity to visit varied international destinations to explore diverse modes of artistic expression. Among the countries NWSA college graduates have visited over the years is France, Spain, Germany, Italy, England, and China. With the goal of exposing the young artists to different artistic world views, in a conceptual as well as technical aspect, the international excursions included visits to museums and galleries, access to private arts collections, and lectures by renowned artists and curators.

“I am personally most grateful for the de la Cruzes generosity not only for this year’s opportunity but for the many years in which they have provided remarkable opportunities and experiences to our students and to our program. I have seen students’ lives change in very positive and permanent ways because of these experiences. I want to thank Carlos and Rosa de la Cruz as well as the Knight Foundation for their genuine support and sympathetic influence on the lives of these young artists,” expressed O’Reilly in closing.

In the late 1980’s, Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz started collecting art from their home which they opened to the public by appointment only. From 2001 to 2007, Rosa founded and chaired the non-profit Moore Space, a kunsthalle located in the Design District. It was then that Rosa and Carlos started planning and building the present de la Cruz Collection on 41st Street, a 30,000 square foot museum which opened in 2009. The de la Cruz Collection is a private museum and is not government funded. Admission to the Museum is free of charge.

The Knight Foundation are social investors who support a more effective democracy by funding free expression and journalism, arts and culture in community, research in areas of media and democracy, and in the success of American cities and towns where the Knight brothers once published newspapers. Knight Foundation believes arts and culture are at the core of community, connecting people to place and to one another. Investing in arts and culture is central to Knight’s effort to build stronger, better informed, and more engaged communities, which are critical for a more effective democracy. Knight Foundation funds the application of technology to the presentation, dissemination, and experience of art.

Aspiring artists in the NWSA Visual Arts division can join other exceptionally talented students as they engage in the pursuit of their artistic career in the visual, graphic, or electronic arts. Trained by nationally renowned practicing artists, students at New World School of the Arts are encouraged to develop a personal, artistic, and aesthetic vision while mastering their technical skills in traditional and new media. Students are allowed to explore new paths while at the same time being exposed to the work of both classical and contemporary masters. Through disciplined training in traditional and new media, students develop new skills and refine others while gaining invaluable understanding of the roles of art and design in society. Areas of concentration include Art & Technology, Drawing, Graphic Design, Painting, Photography, and Sculpture. Information about the NWSA Visual Arts division at 305-237-3620. 

A Florida center of excellence in the visual and performing arts, New World School of the Arts is an educational partnership of Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Miami Dade College, and University of Florida. NWSA provides a comprehensive program of artistic, creative, and academic development through a curriculum that reflects our community and the rich multicultural state of Florida. Through our partners NWSA confers the high school diploma, Associate of Arts degree, and Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Music degrees in programs accredited by the National Association of Schools of Dance, Music, Theater and Art & Design. NWSA’s rigorous eight-year curriculum and conservatory-style teaching has empowered students in our community and our nation to become leaders in the arts for more three decades.

Information about New World School of the Arts at 305-237-3135 or nwsa.mdc.edu.