Zac Wooten has more than graduation to look forward to this summer. This art history student is on his way to attend New York University in the fall in the profit arts and administration program. At NYU, Zac will earn his Master’s in Arts Administration (MAA).
Zac discovered his passion for art on a study abroad trip in Italy. There, he learned how art plays a significant role in everyday life in Italy. After returning to Augsburg as a theater major, Zac took a class with art history professor Kristen Anderson on the historical aspects of art. In a subsequent course, Kerry Morgan, Augsburg’s art gallery coordinator, noticed Zac’s passion for art. “He would attend art shows and stay after to ask questions,” she remembers. “Zac had above and beyond an interest in the art brought to campus.” He was interested in making art accessible to others.
Zac began an internship with Morgan installing and de-installing art exhibits, a position where his theater background proved helpful. “Putting on an art show is like a mini theater show,” she noted. Zac’s first art show had 35 to 40 pieces, and he didn’t know where to begin. But with Morgan’s help, he turned the blank space into a gallery. Art galleries bring “education and communities together,” according to Zac. He calls himself a facilitator of the arts, building bridges that bring the art world to everyone else.
“I want to instill in young people that owning original artwork is important socially. Art you connect with has an emotional investment in another human being,” said Zac. As a patron of the arts himself, Zac wants younger generations to partake in the importance of art and owning original artwork.
With the help of Augsburg faculty, Zac applied to and was accepted to NYU. English professor John Harkness was particularly impressed with Zac. When asked why, Harkness replied, “He struck me as having a different kind of maturity and as someone who would fit well with the New York culture.”
In the NYU program, Zac will have access to high-profile internships and will assist both corporate and private act accounts to help in art buying and art collecting. He will learn management and practice entrepreneurship by working with auction houses in New York.