Recently, problems surrounding nude models have caused great commotion in the Art and Visual Communications department. Although there are general rules in the selection and protection of nude models on most college campuses, UVSC is only now changing, creating, and implementing them.
This implementation took place after a student was caught performing inappropriate behaviors towards a nude model in one of the classes.
After the circumstance occurred, the practice of nude modeling was suspended from campus.
Professors were notified through memos explaining that the practice of having nude models in class was no longer acceptable or allowed; some openly disapproved of this decision. It was noted by an employee that the incident caused contention among several faculty and staff members.
When asked to comment on the situation through several e-mails and phone calls, Department Chair Steve Bule eventually noted, "There was no one episode that occurred or one individual who caused the suspension of models. Things are now in order and all is well."
This statement was made despite the fact that several students and faculty have complained and spoken differently about the issue, some openly upset.
"A few weeks ago, my teacher came into our figure painting class and said something about not being able to have nude models anymore. We all thought he was joking, but he wasn’t," Eric Arballo, a junior at UVSC with a fine arts emphasis on illustration, said. "I was pretty mad; we have been working on our paintings of our model for the whole semester, and now we have to stop half way."
The ban lasted about 16 days, until a policy and procedure list could be drafted, potentially stopping other similar incidents from occurring.
Although the situation was short-lived, many students lost valuable time doing what they signed up for in the first place.
"Well, it’s a crying shame for us art students to have lost nude models for our human figure classes," Arballo said, before the new policy was drafted, reinstituting the ability to draw from models. "They are the main part."
Arballo, while now allowed the privilege of nude modeling in his courses, feels that this suspension may have been partly his fault, although Department Chair Bule contends it was not one single episode or individual that caused it.
"We didn’t have a model, so I volunteered," Arballo said. "When I came back to school, I was handed a paper that stated the new rules for nude models. On the list it stated that students in the class cannot model. I thought to myself, ‘Hmm. Maybe somebody in the class didn’t like it when I got up and modeled nude’."
It was made apparent that the person involved in the incident, which has been referred to as exhibiting inappropriate behavior, has been dealt with and all new policy changes will shortly be in effect. These changes now await board approval.
"I would hope (the nude modeling problem) is seen as a non-issue," Bule said. "I would think (it) more interesting to know of the great art the students are creating, which receives little if any recognition on campus – including the show now at the UVSC Woodbury Gallery at the mall."