Fine Arts House shelters creativity, passion

Mallory Martin

Credit: von Hafften

The Fine Arts House offers a haven for some of the creative, artsy kids running around Whitman’s campus. Two of the current residents, sophomores Zoe Randol and Russell Sperberg, talked about life in the interest house, their connections with art and what to consider if you’d like to live there next year.

The Fine Arts House, established in 1982, is located on the corner of Boyer Ave. and Otis St. Adorned with a colorful sign and a rainbow hammock, it exudes the vibe of a bohemian artist commune.

“It’s very different than living in a dorm,” said Sperberg. “It’s a lot cozier, but it’s living in close proximity with six people who you kind of know, but you don’t know what it will be like to live with them. It’s trial by fire.”

“But we all get along really well,” Randol added. “We’re a very high-energy group. It’s nice that our big personalities clash well.”

Sperberg, a theatre major with a passion for piano, decided to join the house after visiting for dinner one evening.

“I loved all the people involved, and I thought it would be more in tune with the things that I like to do,” said Sperberg.

A graduate of a performing arts high school, Randol was accustomed to being surrounded by artists of a multitude of disciplines.

“I like talking with people who are passionate about arts other than my own,” she said. “It increases my love for my field.”

When asked about the interview process for the house, both performers recalled a particular request by R.A. Julia Schneider.

“Julia asked me to hand in a CD of my art,” said Sperberg, who turned in a CD of all the songs that had ever had an impact on him.

Randol, an actress and an English major, found this particular request a little more difficult, but rose to the challenge.

“I just submitted some silly pictures of me acting,” said Randol. “Some of them were legitimate, some were just of me making some really ridiculous stage faces.”

“It’s about the right fit,” Schneider said. “Come to one of our house dinners, take a tour, make sure this is the right place for you.”