“Art helps us live our lives.” Fifty years ago, arts patron Isabel Paul understood and embodied Wallace Stevens’ sentiment by donating funds to create the University of New Hampshire’s first creative arts center. Since then, the Paul Creative Arts Center, or PCAC, as it is affectionately called, has served the University and its surrounding communities as a vibrant arts and cultural center.
Enter PCAC on any given day. One hears and sees the creativity of painters, singers, composers, dancers, and storytellers and feels the accumulated creative energy of 50 years coursing through the building. Can you imagine our world without the arts? No paintings or artwork on the walls. No melodies in the background or through an iPod. No dances, no rituals. Art connects us to each other and to people and cultures we will never see. Art helps us understand who we are and our role in the universe. Art connects us to our entire history.
In 2010–2011, the University, enriched by Isabel Paul’s gift, will embrace its vibrant and colorful past while setting the stage for a wider appreciation and long-term commitment to the art that completes our lives. All cultures are remembered by their art. The culture of UNH is no exception. What kind of art will we leave behind? What kind of world will our art help to shape in our next 50 years?
It is time to look to the future. Welcome to “Arts for Life.”