Alumni Spotlight: Chaz O’Neil ’06​ (B.A. in Art (Printmaking, Painting, and Drawing))

Posted May 31, 2022

What did you study at Otterbein? 

As a student at Otterbein, I concentrated in drawing, painting, and printmaking.  In my junior year, I took a summer job at The Ohio State Fair Fine Arts Exhibition as a gallery assistant where I would end up working for the next fifteen years and being promoted to Assistant Director of the Fine Arts Exhibition in 2009.  I received my master’s degree in 2D Studies from Bowling Green State University in 2013 and shortly after I was asked to join the faculty and staff at Otterbein as the Museum & Gallery Assistant, Collection Registrar, and eventually, Drawing Instructor.

Chaz Oneil
Chaz Oneil ’06

The experiences I had as a student, an alumni, a staff member, and a faculty member at Otterbein have benefited my studio practice and my professional career.  I received recognition for my studio work in 2018 where I was awarded two artist residencies.  The Ohio Art League awarded me the Can Serrat International Artist Residency in El Bruc, Spain and The Greater Columbus Arts Council awarded me the Dresden Residency Exchange Award in Dresden, Germany.  As a result, I was invited to show my work at Greater Columbus 2020 at The Columbus Museum of Art and recently held a solo exhibition at ROYGBIV Gallery in Columbus.

Thanks to Otterbein, my professional career recently took another leap.  I was hired at The Ohio Arts Council as the Individual Artist Programs & Percent for Art Coordinator.  Leaving Otterbein was one of the most challenging decisions I’ve ever faced, but my former professors, supervisors, colleagues and friends were in my corner and they encouraged me to move forward.

Where are you now? What is a typical day on the job or in the studio like?

Now, a typical day is commuting to downtown Columbus, to the Arts Council.  I get to work with individual artists to help them apply for grants, apply for projects & exhibitions, and educate them on the various other programs of the agency.  I also review the grant applications for panelist review, interpret data, and monitor databases.  It is a full-time job, but I do get to work in the studio still!

Over the last 18 years, I’ve had an eclectic day-to-day job situation.  Now, my work-life is more simplified these days.  But because of my time at Otterbein, BGSU, The Ohio State Fair, the various restaurant and side jobs, and being a part-time artist, I am well trained in juggling my work-life, personal-life, and studio-life.  I wouldn’t have it any other way.  If any artist, student, or alumni who is reading this, would like guidance on how to the Ohio Arts Council can benefit their practice, or would like a studio visit, please drop me a line!