Texas Academy of Figurative Arts (TAFA) was founded in 2007 by Ron A. Cheek in Fort Worth. Prior to founding TAFA, Cheek studied at the Florence Academy of Art in Florence, Italy, earned a Bachelor of Environmental Design from Texas A&M and painted full time. In 2010, TAFA purchased and renovated a building at their current location in the near south side community of the city, located on South Main. This street also hosts Amphibian Theatre and coming soon many other hipster businesses based on the street renovation and construction already under way.
TAFA’s mission is to develop, educate and train artists in the figurative tradition, giving artists the skills to freely express their unique artistic vision. What is figurative art? Below is a very basic illustration of the difference between abstract and figurative art.
But TAFA instructors teach the methods used by the Old Masters. Old Masters refers to a range of the most seminal figures of European painters before 1800 like da Vinci, Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Bellini, and more.
The academic calendar at TAFA is divided into three trimesters. The Fall term is from early September to December (14 weeks), the Spring term begins in January and ends in April (14 weeks) followed by a Summer term beginning in May and ending in July (11 weeks). TAFA offers a teen workshop specifically designed for young adult artists scheduled for two weeks in the summer. Full-time tuition is $2,650 for 14 weeks of training and $2,100 for 11 weeks. TAFA offers a fee schedule for part-time and individual classes. See their website for details. http://www.tafastudio.org/
The curriculum provides a clear progression and development for any artist interested in academic realism.
Year 1: The emphasis is on accuracy, technique, and representing form through line.
Year 2: Focus shifts to techniques related to light and shade and also monochrome painting.
Year 3: Focus shifts from drawing to painting, specifically still-life painting and figure painting from life.
Year 4: Focus is now on design and composition, as well as the more complex figures, still-life and portrait painting.
Faculty includes the founder and director of TAFA, Ron A. Cheek, and Andrew Boatright, a gifted and passionate realist painter who apprenticed under the founder for several years. Find them on Facebook at Texas Academy of Figurative Arts. We truly have some wonderful gems in the Fort because the people of our city support the arts with all our hearts, soul and pocketbooks.