Studio Arts Sees New Structure, Facilities

Rembrandt Hall, the studio art building at Pomona College, is seeing its last batch of drawers, painters, sculptors, and designers make their way
through its halls this semester. The first building completed under the leadership of President James Blaisdell in 1914, this home for the art and art history departments will soon be incorporated into the physical layout of Pomona’s
expanding music department.

“Rembrandt will be taken over by the Music Department as part of a ‘Music Quad’ between Thatcher and Rembrandt,” said George Gorse, an art history professor at Pomona, in an email to TSL. He added that Rembrandt will be renovated in following years to adapt it for the music department. 

While art students enjoyed their classes in Rembrandt Hall, many recognize the need for a new space. 

“It’s nice but it’s pretty small, so I understand why they wanted to build a new building,” Joshua Kroen PO ’17 said.

Speaking about his fellow art majors, Andrew Kolczynski PO ’16 said, “I think we’re excited. I know I’m excited.”

Mercedes Teixido, an associate professor of studio art, has worked in the same office in Rembrandt since 1995. 

“We’ve been so crowded for so long, it will be amazing to have a great facility,” Teixido said. “We feel like it’s a new beginning for us.”

However, she said, “There is a tremendous sadness about leaving a space.” 

“You feel the history,” she added, sitting in front of a desk as old as Pomona, now in her Rembrandt office, which she hopes to bring to the new building. 

The new studio arts building is scheduled to be completed Oct. 23, just north of Sontag Theatre and east of Oldenborg residence hall. The building will provide a state-of-the-art light lab, drawing studio, sculpture studio, digital
fabrication room, photo and digital studio, and metals and foundry room, among other resources. 

James Taylor, the chair of Pomona’s theater department, is excited about potential crossover between studio arts and theater students when the new building is in use next fall. 

“We’re hoping that some of our [theater design] students will go to the new studio arts building and that the proximity will also bring some of the studio arts students to come take our theater design classes,” Taylor said.

He added that the theater department hopes to have a “housewarming party” for the studio art program when the building opens. 

The new building will achieve a Gold rating from the Leadership in
Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification program, according to Assistant Director of Planning and Project Management Andrea Ramella. 

Sustainable building practices include “sourcing local materials or materials with high recycled
content, purchasing FSC [Forest Stewardship Council] wood, and of course recycling of
construction waste and any excess product,” Ramella said in an email to TSL.

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