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Advanced Studies in Two-Dimensional Media finds purpose and meaning

Advanced Studies in Two-Dimensional Media is a space where all majors explore deep concepts

Jordan Acker Anderson

What happens when advanced art students, regardless of their artmaking methods, work side by side and explore art together?

This artistic mashup happens in a multidisciplinary studio class taught by Jordan Acker Anderson, chair of the Art and Graphic Design Department.

Students set out to create more than art. They discover a means for finding joy. Listen to Acker Anderson speak to the roles of how these strong emotions are communicated visually:


"Their interests emerge, and from there maybe we start to talk about the bigger question of joy. But they didn't even realize in the beginning they were chasing joy."

Mount Mary actively encourages students to seek joy through inspiration.They learn that sometimes, this means going against the grain in a society filled with disillusionment and stress.

Cynicism has had a crippling effect on people’s ability to engage and connect. Joy, on the other hand, wields a powerful force for coming together. “Somehow it became cool not to care,” said internet expert Shabnam Mogharabi. Mogharabi, who recently spoke on campus and whose entertainment and media company, SoulPancake, produces content for broadcast and the internet.

“Joy is the most rebellious force on the planet. It is counter-culture to the world we live in today,” Mogharabi said.

Coming together in an interdisciplinary setting such as this advanced studio class, students realize that achieving joy is not only possible; it’s a necessity.

Joy is a leading indicator of an individual’s ability to sustain high levels of passion, performance, and productivity over the long term. According to Acker Anderson, if we can uncover our true gifts and find work with purpose and meaning, we’re one step closer to finding joy.
View photos of the Advanced Studies in Two-Dimensional Media class: