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Dr. Andrew Denton (PhD) is a multimedia artist whose work engages with themes of climate change and environmental devastation. (Photo: submitted)

New Zealand artist/scholar to lead USask School for the Arts

Andrew Denton will join as director when the new school launches July 1


Dr. Andrew Denton (PhD) has been appointed director of the new School for the Arts in the University of Saskatchewan (USask) College of Arts and Science.

Denton will lead the school—which will unite USask’s drama, art and art history, and music programming for the first time under a single academic unit—starting from its launch on July 1, 2024. Along with his five-year appointment as director, Denton will hold a tenure-track faculty position in the School for the Arts.

“I am honoured and thrilled to join the team at the University of Saskatchewan. I am inspired by the depth and breadth of creativity, generosity of spirit, and commitment to creative practice education, research and community engagement that the people who work in the School for the Arts bring to the university. To say I look forward to working alongside new colleagues in the director role for the school is an understatement,” Denton said.

Denton comes to USask from New Zealand’s Auckland University of Technology, where he is an associate professor in the School of Art and Design. His leadership experience at Auckland University of Technology includes recent terms as a program leader, department head, and associate head of the School of Art and Design.

As the first director of USask’s School for the Arts, Denton will provide leadership and vision as he works with faculty members to determine the new school’s priorities and initiatives while maintaining the strengths of the existing programs.

Denton’s appointment is the result of a global candidate search led by faculty members in the College of Arts and Science’s art and art history, drama, and music departments.

“I am pleased to welcome Dr. Denton to the University of Saskatchewan as the inaugural director of the School for the Arts,” said Dr. Brooke Milne (PhD), dean of the College of Arts and Science. “I am thrilled to have an internationally recognized artist and scholar such as Dr. Denton help lead us into a new and exciting era for the arts on our campus.”

In his research, Denton makes use of moving images to engage with themes of climate change and environmental devastation. His artistic practice merges several media, including live cinema, dance, motion capture and virtual reality.

Denton is also dedicated to developing high-quality experiences and curricula for creative arts students. He has presented and published widely on innovative teaching and learning practices, and on designing project-based curricula.

Originally from Vancouver but raised in New Zealand, Denton obtained a Bachelor of Fine Arts at Simon Fraser University in Canada. He later completed a Master of Contemporary and Performing Arts at University of Auckland in New Zealand and a PhD at Australia’s Monash University.

The creation of the School for the Arts at USask is the result of a multi-year project within the College of Arts and Science to elevate fine arts programming. As part of this revisioning project, the Department of Art and Art History, Department of Drama, and Department of Music are being merged into a single school.

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