The Savannah College of Art and Design adapts to the obstacles this year’s social distancing has presented by taking things virtual again.


It isn’t just the recent film festival opening up to new audiences around the world. Now it’s the university’s Open Studio event.


In years past, the Open Studio that showcases illustrations, paintings, photographs, prints, and sculptures by SCAD students, alumni, and faculty has been in-person only, but after including an online showing with the school’s June Open Studio Night, the decision was made to keep the virtual element for the fall.


"Everything will exclusively be online this time," said Victoria Gildersleeve from SCAD Art Sales.


More than 700 works from students, alumni, and faculty from all over the world will be available to view and purchase Friday through Sunday online at SCADArtSales.com/OpenStudio.


Gildersleeve said the June event saw a significant increase in viewers because participating artists were able to invite friends and family to view it wherever they were.


"Typically, you have to be in Savannah or Atlanta to attend, but with it being virtual like this, we were of course hesitant to see how it would go, but the response was sales all over the world."


Open Studio is used to introduce new artists to a wider market. One new artist is Diego Cardenas. The painter from Venezuala brings his experience as a graffiti artist to his oil paintings that will be on display.


Cardenas said the pieces he’s showing are discourses on natural light and color.


"Most of my work deals with the use of spray paint and that related to the fact that I’m a graffiti writer," said Cardenas.


He pursued murals and graffiti writing for a while when he was younger, but took a break until 2012 when he came back to the United States. That’s when, he said, he fell back in love with the art form.


"You know, the rush of being out at night, the adrenaline that you feel, and the marriage of people who probably don’t have much to do with each other."


While Cardenas pieces for Open Studio won’t be spray painted onto your wall, you can get a better idea of what his and other artists’ works will look like in your home with SCAD’s new "view-in-room" feature.


If you download the ArtCloud app, you’ll be able to see how the artwork will fit into your home before committing to a purchase. There will also be options to pick up the art locally or have it mailed to you.


Gildersleeve said that when they can safely open the event back up to in-person viewing, the school will retain the virtual viewing as well.