The Northampton Arts Council works to support and nurture the arts in the city of Northampton. The Council awards grants twice each year to artists and arts groups from both state and locally-raised funds, and seeks to improve public awareness of the arts. Its' goals include maintaining and preserving the rich and diverse cultural heritage of Northampton, programming such annual events of interest to the community as First Night Northampton and Transperformance.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Health and Safety in the Art Studio Course at UMass Amherst

From July 31 through August 4, the Department of Art at UMass Amherst hosts a special, intensive summer course taught by industrial hygienist Monona Rossol through the Office of Continuing and Professional Education.

Identified by investigative journalist Juan Gonzales as one of the heroes of the environmental aftermath of the September 11 attack on the World Trade Center, Rossol will visit the UMass Amherst Campus to teach Health and Safety in the Art Studio (LLART 101). This course provides a rare opportunity to interact with a pioneer in her field and a comprehensive guide to safety and environmental laws for visual artists, designers, art educators, theater technicians, builders, and safety professionals. Register Now »

To protect both artists and the earth, Health and Safety in the Art Studio focuses on using art materials in compliance with OSHA and EPA regulations. Materials are studied for their applications in all art disciplines. Safety requirements for professional studios and classroom requirements for all student populations including children, college-age, seniors, and art therapy patients are detailed.

Students who pass the final exam will receive a letter from Rossol certifying their training in certain OSHA regulations. These letters have qualified many individuals for jobs in arts practice or education (in several theatrical unions, these letters are accepted in lieu of OSHA training). Rossol is dedicated and passionate about art safety, and her students receive continuing advice beyond in whatever careers they choose.

​Rossol taught the very first course on art safety on record in 1980 at the University of Wisconsin Madison in 1980. She has since perfected the curriculum, and keeps it current with OSHA standards and EPA regulations.

Rossol first came to UMass Amherst in 1991 as a featured speaker. In 2006, she worked with Gund Partnership Architects on planning for the Studio Arts Building on campus. She was instrumental in creating a safe, hygienic, and well-equipped building for student and faculty artists. Her involvement with the building led her to identify UMass Amherst as the ideal campus on which to teach this course.

“It is crucial to teach this course in an art department that is a model of safety,” says Rossol. In her opinion, the Studio Arts Building on the UMass Amherst campus embodies “how things should be done.”

A block of rooms is reserved in the Hotel UMass (located on campus) for course participants travelling to Amherst in need of lodging (group code is PW17C).

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