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Chair's Welcome

Robert Ott
Robert Ott

Message from the Chair

Welcome to the School of Image Arts 2020-2021 academic year.

If you are just entering the School of Image Arts, you are taking the first step towards building a positive and meaningful career in image-making and storytelling. If you are a returning student, you are already well-versed in the business and culture of film, photography, and digital media. In either case, you crave to study with the best. You possess the passion and the talent; we provide the environment and support. The faculty and staff are here to encourage and guide you as you pursue your goals at Ryerson. We are committed to maintaining the standards of excellence of the programs while providing you with opportunities to express yourself creatively and develop a professional work ethic grounded in principles of inclusion, equity, diversity, integrity, and mutual respect.

If you are a parent, alumni, donor, partner, industry professional, community member, or image-maker and storytelling enthusiast of our School, you are witnessing bright minds unleashing their quest to challenge norms, make a positive difference, and share their vision. Your interest and support mean the world us.

It is going to be a different year, but I am confident it will be a great year. Faculty and staff have worked very hard over the summer to re-envision your program where, in addition to online learning, you will also have the opportunity to participate in in-person classes. Our School is one of very few programs at Ryerson taking a hybrid course delivery approach. Your health, safety, and well-being are of upmost importance to us. Thank you for your confidence, patience, and encouragement as we together navigate the new academic year.

The School is recognized as a national and international centre for creative innovation in the study, production, exhibition, and research of film, photography, and digital art.

Our two undergraduate programs (BFA) in Film and Photography are augmented by the exciting Integrated Digital option that combines and extends aspects of film and photography, including motion graphics, animation, VR/AR, creative coding, multi-channel video, projection mapping, digital media installations, and 3D modelling among many other modes of creative digital production.

In addition, our two graduate programs are highly regarded and one-of-a-kind in Canada. The MFA in Documentary Media is one of very few such master’s programs in the world connecting traditions to new, innovative ways of producing documentary work. The MA in Film and Photography Preservation and Collections Management (FPPCM) explores solutions to the challenges that institutions and organizations face in managing and developing object- and digital-based collection. A unique residency program places students throughout the world.

Faculty members are trailblazers in their fields by advancing society’s understanding of visual and media arts through their film productions, exhibitions, and scholarly publications. The Ryerson Image Centre, external link is a world-class photography and related media centre hosting an exceptional calendar of openings, artist talks, and exhibitions and serves as a premier venue for exceptional student work.

Students bring vibrancy to our Image Arts community and I encourage you to get involved in the numerous activities and events in an outside of our School. And, don’t forget to celebrate your fellow students’ work throughout the year featured in our online publication Function and exhibit spaces, including our external gallery, Artspace, external link, which is relocated at 401 Richmond, and at the Ryerson University Film Festival (RUFF) and Maximum Exposure (MaxEx) anticipated in May 2021.

Robert Ott, Chair