Release Date: 
Monday, November 13, 2023

First HFC-24 “way beyond expectations”

Panoramic shot of students in the Sisson Art Gallery.

From September 29-30, the HFC Fine Arts department held its first 24-hour collaborative arts project called HFC-24.

“It was exhausting but a ton of fun,” said HFC Director of Theatre Dr. Michael Sefel.

HFC Faculty Chair of Fine and Performing Arts Steve Glazer and HFC Chairperson for the Department of Communication and Media Susan McGraw agreed.

“It was very draining, but it was worth it. We all had a great experience,” said Glazer. “The students went way beyond expectations.”

Added McGraw: "I'm incredibly proud of the students from across the arts, including media arts, who brought their creativity to this event. I witnessed new friendships being forged and a sense of community among these talented and confident students that was both heartwarming and inspiring."

More than 40 students from 5 programs worked together

More than 40 students in HFC’s Theatre, Telecommunication, Graphic Design, Studio Arts, and Music programs came together and collaborated on interdisciplinary artistic conversations, artwork, compositions, and performances in a 24-hour period.

Students had to create everything around one of 12 simple prompts chosen by the faculty:

  1. A mini-replica of the Eiffel Tower
  2. A CD
  3. A VHS tape
  4. A deck of cards
  5. A band-aid
  6. A piece of paper
  7. A bouquet of flowers
  8. A cork
  9. A feather
  10. A pair of hand-warmers
  11. A clock
  12. A soap dish shaped like the skeleton of a fish

These prompts are on display in the case outside the Sisson Art Gallery in the MacKenzie Fine Arts Center (Building M) on the main campus.

Theatre major Brittany Battle, the event manager of the HFC Theatre Club, picked the hand-warmers, which prompted her to write and direct Dear Younger Self, a 6½-minute play starring four of her fellow students.

“This was my first experience writing and directing,” she said. “It was hard at points, but I managed to push through and have a great time. This whole thing was absolutely amazing! I’m extremely proud of everyone who participated – they did so well!”

Asked if she would participate in another HFC-24, Battle’s reply was, “Heck yeah!”

Recognizing each other as artists through collaboration

“At the end, we were each other’s audiences,” said Sefel. “The whole point of this was to encourage our students to recognize one another as artists with shared goals and common interests because they will often be asked to collaborate like this in the real world.”

HFC Interim Director of Music Anthony Lai said HFC-24 was a great experience for everyone, especially the students.

“HFC-24 proved to be an excellent place where students could try their hand at music creation for the first time and know that the ‘I only had 24 hours’ excuse could be a safety net to their insecurities if they felt self-conscious about their compositions. What a great way to jump into the deep end!” said Lai.

HFC-24 marked the first time every program under Fine Arts worked together on one big event. Glazer has been wanting to do something like this ever since he came to HFC in 2004.

“I always thought it would be pretty great and a great icebreaker to do something like this across the curriculum,” he said. “After nearly 20 years, we finally got to do it. This was very exciting, and I can’t wait to do it again.”

Neither can HFC Program Lead, Digital and Graphic Arts Victoria Shepherd.

“One of the most beneficial outcomes of the event was watching students who may not have known each other come together in meaningful ways,” said Shepherd. “They also enjoyed creating without any intervention of the instructors beyond technical help. The graphic design participants represented all stages of experience, as such they were able to help each other. Students increasingly have compassion for one another, which shows in their support of each other.”