UMHB Center for the Visual Arts

GSC Architects February 7, 2016


An important goal was to build the Center for the Visual Arts as a gallery for the public, not exclusively a private art school for the University. We created spaces where the public can be in all places in and surrounding the building. The street façade speaks strongly to the historical context of the 125 year old campus, but the entrance is suggestive of the light and airy industrial interior and contemporary industrial sculpture garden.

The building is structured around two dramatic heritage oak trees and the surrounding natural contours of the land: a prime opportunity to create an intimate public sculpture garden at the core of the site connected to the main entrance and gallery through a large open-volume lobby. The heart of the building is a gallery with moveable walls and a lecture hall.  Printmaking, graphic design, and photography studios are equipped with technology for instruction, presentation and creative production. Upper level students have their own studios for independent work. The ceramics and sculpture studios open to an outdoor workshop for glassblowing, foundry and specialty ceramics in the sculpture garden. The studios have glass walls to receive the soft filtered light through the tree canopy.

Underscoring the importance of producing graduates with marketable talent, an important feature of the building is the presentation conference room that is open to the large open-volume lobby and sculpture garden.  The faculty’s charge was to design an environment that spurs creative product in the context of a professional studio environment.


Client: University of Mary Hardin-Baylor Baugh Center for the Visual Arts

Size: 27, 691 sf new construction

Services Provided:
Planning/Programming, Architectural Design, Interior Design, Construction Administration