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Dr. Julie McWilliams

Dr. Julie McWilliams


Professor of Fine Arts
Fine Arts Department

Phone: 973.300.2144
Office: C205

I am a full-time Professor of Fine
Arts and Academic Program Coordinator for the Fine Arts Degree program at
Sussex County Community College, but I am also a painter. While I teach oil, watercolor,
life drawing, and art history, I continue to wrestle with my own work. I think
of my paintings as attempts to explore a connection between my own personal
memories of place by using figures in abstract architectural spaces. I have
been deeply influenced by paintings of the New York Abstract Expressionist movement
but then I am frequently meticulous and ordered as well.

I attended Brooklyn College and had
the good fortune to study with painters like Jimmy Ernst and Philip Perlstein,
Lois Dodd, Lee Bonteue, and Lennart Anderson. In a Masters Program at Montclair
State University I met and befriended artists like Jonathan Silver, Dan Brobander,
and Carmen Cicero. Perhaps I’ve relied more than I needed to on academic
training, I think because I am never that sure of myself but I love academia. I
completed my BA in New York, and earned two Masters Degrees before completing a
fellowship at Princeton University and finally my doctorate at Drew University.

My commitment to students goes far beyond the classroom. It serves as the basis
for my own life and self-esteem. Without teaching and the connection I have to
the arts, my own stability and function would be severely limited; teaching on
the edge, but I believe this kind of hyperbolic commitment is necessary because
teaching should never be just a job. Further, I never impart to students that
they should be educated simply for a job. No one should settle for a job. Every
one of my students deserves to have a “self;” a self, engaged in a meaningful
profession and a self of ease and equilibrium that comes from a connection to
their comprehension and wonder at the culture they’ve been born into and will
take away from. Art can do that. Jobs come later. Being an artist is a life,
not just a job that one picks up on Monday and puts down on Friday. There are
no holidays from being an artist and no vacations.

Though I grew up in New York City, I now live in rural Stillwater, NJ. I drive a Jeep, ride horses, plow my own driveway and commune with various flora and fauna, friends, animals, and artists and try, each day, to spend the remainder of whatever time I’ve left on earth: teaching, painting, and writing as best I can.

B.A., Brooklyn College
M.A. Montclair State University
D.Litt, Drew University