Prior to founding TAFA, Cheek studied at the Florence Academy of Art in Florence, Italy from 1997 to 2001. Upon returning to the United States, Cheek had the vision for beginning a similar program in Texas. However, the contemporary art scene in DFW seemed to favor more abstract and conceptional modes of expression. What we discovered after surveying students over several years is that many younger students felt both alienated and doubtful of this trend in art education. They knew that most colleges and universities had abandoned realist-based art education and many of those who already had a bachelor of fine arts also knew the MFA programs were also focused more on conceptual expression.
Therefore, in 2007 we began with a handful of local students who became aware of Cheek’s work and teaching and wanted to study realist drawing and painting techniques. The original studio location was on East Lancaster in a converted warehouse now known as the Lancaster Lofts. Our studios were located on the bottom floor alongside other local artists. In 2010 TAFA moved to our present location in what was previously the ARCO Metal Fabrication warehouse and offices on South Main Street near downtown Fort Worth.
Our commitment is to provide the best realist based drawing & painting curriculum in Texas and beyond. We believe that student work will always demonstrate the strength of any fine art program. Therefore, take a look at our student gallery as a testimony to how well we are achieving this goal. Our student body is diverse and not only have we drawn students from various parts of Texas but we have also had students join us from Colorado, Kansas, Pennsylvania, and Ohio.
Please contact us and make an appointment to come visit our studios and see for yourself the beautiful work our students are creating.