Works and Ideas

Dean Celine Parreñas Shimizu

At UCSC, the Arts Division is home to students, faculty and staff who work towards transforming the world through the power of artistic production and the critical, historical and analytic study of the arts. We are creating new knowledge that impacts the world through innovation that is inclusive and excellence that is equitable.

Our students develop their highest critical, analytic, historical, theoretical and practical capabilities and learn how to think within social and historical contexts so they may imagine new institutions and find the most effective ways to contribute to our society. Faculty advance knowledge and develop new technologies while offering a curriculum that shines a light on the historically marginalized. Staff contribute to the university’s mission at the forefront of our efforts in student success.

This year, we pay attention to the role of mentorship and establishing best practices in our institution as we diversify the faculty, decolonize the curriculum and continue to create pipelines of collaboration across and beyond the university. Our success in securing grants from the UC-Hispanic Serving Institutions Doctoral Diversity Initiative (UC-HSI DDI) and the UC Office of the President Advancing Faculty Diversity (UCOP-AFD) affirms our efforts in becoming a leader in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion through the Arts. The Arts Professional Pathways program demystifies careers and provides financial support for internships and the dissemination of student work. 

Our Institute for Arts and Sciences, the Arts Research Institute and the Mary Porter Sesnon Art Gallery offer research, exhibitions and community engagement to the public beyond the campus. Our Third Thursday Sesnon Salons join together faculty, staff, students to celebrate the latest and greatest achievements of our departments and programs. And our newly formed Arts Advocacy Council, composed of outstanding leaders in the arts, including Arts Division alumni, help us to enact our future, informed by their expertise, experience and care for public higher education.

We will not experience the full power of the arts unless access to the means of representation is available to all. And we will not realize the full power of the arts if our iconographies and methodologies are dictated by the very few. So, I am driven to expand access so that authorship, critique and the shaping of what we know can be driven by all, and what we take for granted or natural can shift, and to keep our definition of the arts, fervently open. 

Join us in our efforts to deploy the power of the arts to transform the world!

Fiat Slug,

Dean Celine

Celine Parreñas Shimizu, M.F.A., Ph.D.
Dean of the Arts Division
Distinguished Professor, Film and Digital Media

Arts Events

  • Interviews and conversations with Arts Division movers and shakers.

    Listen to the episodes here      

    Sun, Nov 1, 2020, 12:00 am to Fri, Jun 30, 2023, 12:00 am
  • A contemporary of J.S. Bach, Turlough O’Carolan was Ireland’s most famous harper. His music includes the most joyous tunes in the entire ‘6 Celtic Nations’ repertoire as well as airs of extraordinary melancholy. This project is in honor of Linda Burman-Hall’s award of an Edward A. Dickson... more

    Sun, Oct 9, 2022, 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm
    Santa Cruz County Veterans Memorial Building, 846 Front St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
  • Arts Dean Celine Parreñas Shimizu invites students, staff, and faculty of the Arts Division to the Fall Forum: Town Hall.

    Tue, Nov 8, 2022, 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm
    Theater Arts Mainstage and on Zoom

Arts People

The Happy Valley Band is a deconstruction of the Great American Songbook through the use of state-of-the-art machine listening technologies.

Louise Leong

Louise Leong, the Mary Porter Sesnon Art Gallery manager and museum preparator, has recently experienced what she calls her “World Series” of exhibitions on the UC Santa Cruz campus. Supervising the delivery of 44 crates filled with priceless artworks that came to her via two, 53-foot tractor trailers, was no small feat. 

Playwright Trey Anthony will give a talk and masterclass at UCSC as part of the February performances. (Photo credit: Shekeidra Booker)

A bustling West Indian hair salon in Toronto, Canada is the setting for Trey Anthony’s 2001 award-winning play ‘da Kink in My Hair, coming this February 18-27 to UC Santa Cruz’s Theater Arts Main Stage, presented by the Department of Performance, Play & Design and the African American Theater Arts Troupe (AATAT).

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