New site shines light on Penn arts

Arts & Culture at Penn

In the last few years Penn’s web presence has changed dramatically. First there was the complete overhaul of the University’s main web site, designed to make virtual visits to the campus more user friendly. On the heels of that initiative came a new site called Research at Penn, which drew attention to the University’s leadership role in research.

Now comes a site that shines a spotlight on Penn’s rich and varied arts and culture offerings.

“ The goal was to promote our unique cultural resources and give them higher visibility,” says Deni Kasrel, director of web and publishing services and team leader for the Arts & Culture at Penn project.

It’s the variety as well as the number of arts venues that makes Penn special, Kasrel says. The University’s offerings range from the archaeological treasures of the Penn Museum to the ICA’s innovative contemporary art to the ever-popular Penn Presents program of performing arts.

There’s strength in numbers, too, says Kasrel, who envisions arts and culture institutions across campus collaborating through the web site on future promotions. Visitors to the colorful, eye-catching site ( can read profiles on all the campus arts and culture venues and check out event listings, or follow links to each location’s own web site. The home page showcases a rotating selection of upcoming and ongoing exhibits, lectures and performances, and viewers also have the option of signing up for an e-newsletter. Users can also link to listings of student events.

Arts-oriented academic programs are highlighted, too, from traditional disciplines like fine arts and comparative literature to new additions such as digital media design and cinema studies.

The site is an umbrella, says Kasrel, for all things arts and culture. “It’s where we tie it all together.”

Originally published on September 23, 2004