by Priscilla Frank
For most of the world, college is a place to expand your mind, do some keg stands and begin on your path to a steady career. For a select few, however, this precious moment between teenagerdom and adulthood is the time to find your voice, create ’til the wee hours of the morning and shower as little as possible in the meantime. Yes, we’re talking about art students.
Whether you were a studious painter, an incorrigible performance artist or an indecisive multimedia visionary, your formative educational years were all about learning to trust your gut and create with your heart — and manage your crippling student debt. Behold, 25 signs you went to art school.
1. You’ve never been to a frat party. But you’ve attended many a nude body painting bacchanal.
2. Your class contains more sketchbooks than laptops. And the occasional typewriter.
3. In fact, you never leave your room without a sketchbook. Shoes, however, are optional.
4. Your professors smoke more weed than you do. And that’s an educated guess.
5. You’ve lost good friends to bad crits. What do you mean it left you cold?
6. You’ve gazed at more naked people than you could ever tell your grandmother. “Don’t worry, Grandma, all I saw were shapes and gestures.”
7. You’ve gone nude to make some extra cash. As a nude model, jeez.
8. Your class friend changed her name to Wolf Dawn Beethoven. The world had enough Jessica Rosens already.
9. You’re tempted to enlist your five-year-old cousin to help you with your homework. You wish you had her primitive sense of wonder.
10. You curate your Facebook and Instagram profiles to a fault. Everything is art!
11. You could rarely walk into a bathroom without entering a creative meltdown or a performance piece. It’s often hard to tell the difference.
12. You’ve made an angry anti-McDonald’s painting before. And no, you don’t want to talk about it.
13. You have a legitimate, academic reason to experiment with drugs and alcohol. You’re expanding your consciousness, duh.
14. You majored in post-conceptual ceramics. Where’s that option on LinkedIn?
15. You’ve considered applying to work in Jeff Koons’ studio as a side job.But you never got that desperate.
16. Your classmates have shown up to class wearing wizard capes, witch hats, viking helmets and nothing at all. But don’t even think about wearing something from Urban Outfitters.
17. You’ve watched “Art School Confidential” one too many times. “And remember, only one out of 100 of you will ever make a living as an artist.”
18. You’ve spent weeks surviving only on coffee and potatoes. Sure, maybe it was only because it made you feel more artsy.
19. You get a thrill out of being called messed up, weird or unstable. As long as no one thinks you’re nice or boring.
20. You roll your eyes when your parents suggest you visit a museum together. You mean a cultural altar to dead white guys?
21. You swore you’d never get a design job. As you read this from your swanky midtown office.
22. You’ve spent way too long practicing your signature. One day it will be worth millions! Billions!
23. Your dorm room is filled with flea market junk, broken appliances and pieces of trash from the side of the road. Aka. found objects and potential still lifes.
24. You can’t read about record-breaking Christie’s auctions without bawling hysterically. That Gerhard Richter could pay for so many tuitions.
25. But for now, you’re content showing at the local coffee shop. Long live independent art!