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Class Acts - Sara Franz

Sara Frantz Cal PolySara Franz / Art and Design Department

Specialty Area: Painting and Drawing / Years at Cal Poly:

What is/has been your favorite class to teach?
Luckily, I get to teach what I love, and the students generally want to be there, so this is a hard question. In foundations classes, students show such growth and excitement with each new skill or concept. In advanced classes, I really get a chance to know the students individually and help facilitate their projects.

If you were stranded on a desert island and could bring one book, what would it be?
Depending on my mood when I was stranded, either Winter’s Bone by Daniel Woodrell or Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen.

How/why did you choose to work at Cal Poly?
Many reasons: the strength of the students, the location, and the excellent reputation of the University to name a few.

What are your research/scholarly pursuits?
Dislocated from both time and space, my latest series of paintings and drawings explore the false barriers and flimsy structures that create mental distance between human beings and nature. In my series Vacancy, I am the architect of a fake utopian commune of trailer homes inspired by conversations with a wide range of people: misfit academics, philosophers, artists, and sufferers of wanderlust, among others. Dense layers of graphite frame colorful gouache edifices in a theatrical stacking of the familiar and imagined—an attempt to capture wonderment through the imitation of landscape. Alien and grand in their bareness, the results appear collaged, lifting unremarkable constructions into nostalgically flamboyant advertisements for the future/past.

What is your favorite class/student moment?
Too many to count.

What is one thing you wish your students knew about you?
Not sure, I should ask my students what they secretly want to know about me.

What are your hobbies/extracurricular activities?
I spend most of my time outside of teaching in the studio or wishing I was in the studio.

Do you have a favorite getaway location?
Any National Park. Any place new to me and unexplored.

What is a fact about you that few know?
I won a fishing contest when I was 12 for catching the biggest fish.

What is/are your guilty pleasure(s)?
Perfectly partially melted ice cream.



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