Kit Hughes: UGA Amazing Student

April 29, 2004
UGA Amazing Students Web feature
link to original article

Kit Hughes

Kit Hughes has shown his conceptual art projects at venues throughout the southeast region since 1998, including the Fugitive Art Center in Nashville and the Murfreesboro Art Center, also in Tennessee. He is also a net artist who has received a grant from the UGA Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities (CURO) for his Tagging project, an online tool for covering downtown Athens in virtual graffiti.

Expected Graduation: May 2005

Degree Objective: Bachelor of Fine Arts in Digital Media

University highlights, achievements and awards:
Hughes has won numerous awards and recognition including being named a 2003 CURO Summer Research Fellow, ICE (Ideas for Creative Exploration) Project Grant Recipient, and 2004 VIGRE Program Participant (Mathematics and Visualization Seminar). He is also a Presidential Scholar and on the Dean’s List.

Current employment:
I work as a design consultant for a high profile design firm in Atlanta. Our clients include the brands of Budweiser, Bud Light, Gillette, Lipton, and BPAmoco. In Athens, I work for a different firm that designs sports collateral for UGA and many other schools with successful sports programs. I also have freelance clients throughout the country.

High School: Lone Oak High School

Hometown: Paducah, Kentucky

I choose to attend UGA because…
…when I decided to return to art school I began by visiting the top art schools in New England. They all overwhelmingly suggested UGA because of its reputation with digital media. After I visited the newly formed Digital Media program, I knew immediately that UGA was where I belonged.

My favorite things to do on campus are…
1) Experience the Student Learning Center. Since I am a transfer student and have first hand experience at another school, I am especially sensitive to the university’s investment in its students. To me, the Student Learning Center reinforces UGA’s investment in the student experience. When a building of this magnitude-interior and exterior-sits in the landscape of a campus like the SLC does, we have something we can touch and say, “This is our university.”

2) Visit the galleries on campus. There are numerous gallery spaces on campus, not to mention the Georgia Museum of Art, that rotate exhibits, sometimes weekly. A lot of the work is from students so it is great to see a few fresh ideas as some of the artists are working through aesthetic issues for the first time.

3) Walk around campus at the busiest times. My first semester at UGA was abroad, so I didn’t go through a real orientation. During my second semester, I had class only on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. in the same room. For one full year as a UGA student, I essentially had no idea what the on-campus experience was like. Now I walk around and ride packed buses as much as possible.

The craziest thing I’ve done is…
…grow my hair out to donate it to Locks of Love. I’m about 3 inches away from having a 10 inch pony-tail. Two years ago I decided that I wouldn’t have much time to do volunteer work since I was trying to juggle a career, spend time with my wife and go back to school. So I decided to grow my hair out to donate it to children with cancer. I knew this was something that might make me a little uncomfortable but would bring joy to someone faced with so much more than me. It has been very tough dealing with long hair, but it has been worth it.

My favorite professor is…
…Mark Callahan, Laleh Mehran, and Michael Oliveri. I know I’ve listed three people here. However, I asked them to wrestle each other for the title of “Kit’s Favorite Professor” and they all declined. So then I told them I was going to nominate Woody Beck or John Morrow instead since I knew that they’d be willing to wrestle. Needless to say, these three are my primary professors and each has helped me out immensely. Word to Beck and Morrow, though.

If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with…
…Malcolm X. To have undergone such a dramatic transformation through one’s life is absolutely amazing; I want to know what that is like. I read his autobiography in high school and became fascinated with his tact and disposition.

If money was not a consideration, I would love to…
…create a Rural/Urban Design Initiative very similar to Dennis Ruth and Samuel Mockbee’s Rural Studio at the Auburn University School of Architecture. This initiative would connect architecture, design, and art students with communities in low-income urban and rural areas. These students would be able to offer low cost architectural and graphic design solutions to emerging businesses as well as enrich the community identity through aesthetics. Take this same idea and apply it to public policy and there is a chance that communities would flourish based on common principles united in a common direction.

After graduation, I plan to…
…attend graduate school for architecture.