Showcase Interview

Charles Lume

Charles Lume

Faculty Profile
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Charles Lume, a professor in the Department of Art and Design, came to UW-Stout in 2001, bringing with him an expanse of teaching experience from a number of well-established learning institutions, such as Carnegie Melon University, University of Pittsburgh, Bethel University, and UW-Madison. He teaches Drawing, Pointing, an occasional Senior Seminar and Aesthetics of Contemporary Theory—his favorite, as it promotes discussion about “What is art?” and the philosophy of art.


Charles Lume's favorite teaching strategy involves verbally introducing students to the course’s learning objectives, but due to the nature of the subjects he teaches, he uses only a limited number of examples to illustrate each objective. He then promotes individual student creativity by providing ample class time to practice new skills and feedback to students as they work. In his quest to assist students to understand the learning objectives in his classes, Lume approaches the concept from a number of different angles, but he has found that he can assist students to form a greater understanding by finding a way to be “empathetic to the student’s body of knowledge.”

His innovation stems from an article he read in the magazine Art in America. An artist who was being interviewed reflected on the four types of art from the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. At the time, most art portrayed heaven, hell, and the before-and-after the fall in the garden. His curiosity about these genres in the modern form led him to the idea of presenting the genres for interpretation by his students. It has been a great success due to the vast array of student backgrounds and the variety of interpretations that have emerged. With this innovation, Lume has helped students find their own definition of the past and present, as well as providing them with a medium in which to explore their relationship with religion in art.