The TAKEOVER is an annual event put on by all 180+ first-year students of  Art, Design, & Society. In one day an exhibition is installed, then celebrated for a day, then taken down (leaving no trace). Work is installed and performed allover the School of Art & Design's main building and grounds by 180+ students.

In March 2023, on the occasion of the FIVE year anniversary of the TAKEOVER, the event was opened for participation by the entire A&D community: First-year students, all other undergraduates, graduate students, staff, and faculty. As a continuation of that experiment, TAKEOVER VI was also open to the entirety of the School, giving priority the first-year students in the Link Gallery.

The TAKEOVER has two objectives.

1) First, the TAKEOVER aims to reinforce the idea to students that they are creative practitioners NOW, independent of their official schooling. So, even though the students in the course consist of emerging designers, studio practitioners, art educators, and art historians each student is asked to engage with the TAKEOVER simultaneously as a site and venue for their particular expertise, experiments, and curiosities. On the occasion that the TAKEOVER is manifested as an exhibition of student work, they are encouraged to not limit themselves to showing the work they’ve made in school. School work is not prohibited, but should be understood as part of a larger practice which includes any and all creative practices enacted within a student’s life as a whole. The parameters of the TAKEOVER are specific, but usually minimal, in order to encourage unpredictability, experimentation, and wildness.

2) The second objective of the TAKEOVER is to create a collaborative art event that draws its energy from the fact that there are so many students in the course. In TAKEOVER I the students occupied every imaginable corner of the School of Art + Design at the University of Illinois, as well as The Link Gallery. In TAKEOVER II, which was due to open the day we went on COVID quarantine in 2020, the students created two page PDFs each to compile an almost 400 page book of collages, images, drawings, and clippings. For TAKEOVER III—in the midst of the global pandemic that kept us from being able to be inside of any room en masse—the students each created three-minute art pieces using video. These 180 videos were then collated and rear-projected onto the Link Gallery, a steel and glass art gallery that connects the Krannert Art Museum to the School. A late night screening event happened on Friday April 30, 2021 and attendees were able to sit on the lawn to watch the extravaganza of videos play for 90 minutes. The TAKEOVER IV returned to explore the possibilities of the A&D building’s interior. For the fifth anniversary of the TAKEOVER, TAKEOVER V invites the entire School of Art & Design to participate. Students at every level (from every major), staff, and faculty are all invited to participate.

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