My experience in the School of Fine Art at the University of Manitoba was pretty dull until I got involved with the School of Fine Art Students Association – better known as SOFA. I spent a few months with them as a volunteer and then jumped on board to be their director of communications in the last few years of my degree. I met a lot of great artists (and friends), threw parties, and learned a lot about what it is like to be a working artist.
“Its our goal to get students actively involved with each other,” says current SOFA co-president, Joy Balmara.
“We also want to get students involved with the many artist run galleries that our city is endowed with. Winnipeg’s artist community is fairly small but sometimes a seemingly hard and daunting circle to break into. We want to make this easier by bringing these artists and gallery directors to the school and the students to the galleries.”
“[We hold fundraisers to] provide funding for students and student groups for the projects [and] shows. We [also] provide a voice for students – for example we just reclaimed our only student lounge. [We have given] students back a space to eat and relax without having to use space [belonging to another faculty],” says Sara Perkins, the other co-president.
Currently SOFA meets every second Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m. in the ARTLab building. There are still positions for councilors and SOFA always welcomes new volunteers for events or committees.
On Saturday Oct. 5, SOFA will be holding their first social, which they’ve named the “2-Phase party!” It is a two-part event that will start at on campus at the U of M at the Degrees Diner and then move down the hall to the Hub. Tickets will be on sale soon, and will be $15 for the dinner and social – or just $10 for dinner and $5 for the social.
If you want to learn more about SOFA—or even join them—just look them up on Facebook under Sofa Sa.