Studio Art

The studio art program offers three paths of study: Bachelor of Fine Arts major (B.F.A.), Bachelor of Arts major (B.A.) and a minor. In all three paths of study, students develop the conceptual, formal and technical skills necessary to create and analyze their work and the work of others. The program seeks to develop students’ creative and critical thinking skills, which are paramount in any well-rounded career preparation plan.

In an environment conducive to interdisciplinary exploration of the arts and technology, courses in all media stress the development of creative problem-solving, research and reflection. The program focuses on cultivating students’ sense of curiosity, expressive artistic processes and understanding of inventive visual art solutions. The studio art faculty believe that an understanding of historical perspectives, knowledge of contemporary trends and the employment of interdisciplinary approaches are important mechanisms that move students toward becoming intellectually vibrant individuals and artists. Many studio art majors choose to pursue a minor area of study as well (such as business administration, education or graphic design), which prepares them well for a broad range of internship and career opportunities in allied fields.

In addition to studio art, the School of Arts & Sciences offers B.F.A. and B.A. degrees in graphic design, as well as minors in art history, studio art and graphic design. Our school supports performance and production opportunities in dance, music and theater, which are allied arts and vital components of the larger collegiate environment. (Please reference other specific catalog headings for graphic design, dance, music and theater for more information about these areas of study.)

Degrees and Certificates

Classes

ART 100: Introduction to Visual Art

This course acquaints students with major periods of cultural history and introduces the basic visual vocabulary necessary for making informed critical judgments about art. It establishes a framework of understanding through discussion of a variety of historical and contemporary visual ideas. In addition to verbal and written activities, students create their own art in hands-on studio assignments.

ART 110: Drawing Foundations

Through studio practice, beginning drawing students develop a comprehensive understanding of line, shape, volume, texture, space, structure, movement and form. The course teaches students to understand the nuances of visual language and encourages materials and process experimentation. The course work guides the students toward mastery of the technical skills necessary to produce an organized and expressive drawing. Studio practice will include drawing still life objects, landscapes and the human form, using a variety of methods and materials. As an outcome of seeing, thinking and working, students will learn to solve progressions of open-ended problems that arise throughout the drawing process. Group and individual critiques help students further develop their analytical skills and help them hone their ability to provide feedback to other artists.

ART 111-118: Exhibition Foundations

This course offers hands-on experience in exhibition preparation and installation, under the guidance of the directors of the Marian Graves Mugar Art Gallery and the Bill and Sonja C Davidow ’56 Fine Art Gallery. Weekly class meetings cover topics relating to gallery operations and management, including promotion and publicity, budgeting and scheduling, selection of artists and exhibition themes. The differences between commercial and nonprofit galleries are also discussed. Can be repeated for credit in multiple semesters. Course content varies from term to term.

ART 210: Drawing II

This course emphasizes the conceptual processes of idea development. Students’ perceptual and technical skills are advanced, with focus on drawing the human figure from life. Several approaches to life-drawing are used, including the study of anatomy, the analytical approach to drawing and the more gestured and intuitive approaches. Materials investigation continues to be a part of each assignment group.

ART 230: Painting I

Through studio practice, this course introduces students to painting and the basic elements of design and composition. Paint and related media become tools for self-expression. Students develop skills of critical observation and methods of visual organization, internalizing their understanding of the history and concepts of painting. Students learn how to prepare a surface for painting, explore multiple techniques and strategies for creating and executing work and engage in critical analysis through critiques. Students complete several paintings and learn how to prepare them for exhibition.

ART 234: Watercolor I

This course offers students an introduction to the materials, basic techniques and expressive potential of the watercolor medium. It emphasizes the unique attributes of watercolor, including transparency, fluidity, brilliance and spontaneity. Students are expected to integrate these qualities into their own style of visual expression, which they develop through practical exercises and tests, risk-taking, class critiques and a final portfolio.

ART 245: Sculpture I

In this course students develop an understanding of three-dimensional ideation and sculpture construction. Students conceptualize through historical and contemporary research and sketch book drawings. The course covers armature building, the additive process and clay modeling. In addition, students are introduced to subtractive and mixed media construction methodologies. Protocols for studio safety and equipment operations are emphasized; studio agreements and tool instruction authorizations are signed-off on by students.

ART 247: Jewelry & Metalsmithing

Objects for personal adornment have, for centuries, been part of our culture. Often these objects serve as a means of distinguishing ourselves as a distinct culture or group as well as a means of personal expression, remembrance or commemoration. This course will explore some of the different forms and functions that the medium has taken in various cultures around the world. The focus of the course will be on the production of jewelry and/or small-scale metal sculpture. Students will learn some of the traditional methods of jewelry fabrication and design working with precious and non-precious metal and stones.

ART 260: Photography I

This course introduces the image-making possibilities of photography, combining creative and technical exercises with short research projects on photography’s history. It covers the basic theories and mechanical skills necessary to use a digital camera with manual controls and to create and print digital photographs. Though the course emphasizes digital capture, traditional film techniques will be discussed. Students will also learn and follow studio and chemical safety standards. A manually adjustable, interchangeable lens digital camera is required. (A digital single lens reflex camera [DSLR] with a normal [non-wide/non-telephoto] prime [non-zoom] lens is strongly recommended.)

ART 270: Ceramics I

This course introduces basic techniques of hand-built and wheel-thrown ceramics. Studio assignments encourage creativity and help students develop a solid technical foundation in the functional and sculptural aspects of the medium. The course encompasses glazing and decorating techniques, glaze formulation and a variety of firing techniques, as well as the study of ceramic history. Studio safety is emphasized.

ART 285: Art Internship

This introductory elective art internship is designed to provide BA and BFA studio art majors with exploratory, on-site art and design related work experiences and opportunities in related businesses or nonprofit organizations. A studio art or graphic design faculty member serves as the student's internship sponsor. An internship contract must be submitted to the Harrington Center, and study plans must be submitted to an art faculty advisor of choice for approval prior to the beginning of the internship. Graded Pass/Fail.

ART 310: Drawing III

Students build on knowledge, technical skills and visual strategies, gained in ART 210. This intermediate course emphasizes the understanding of formal elements and correlates that understanding with individual expression. Developing their own lines of experimentation and study, students select media according to individual expressive needs.

ART 311: Drawing IV

Students build on knowledge gained in ART 310, technical skills and visual strategies, gained in the understanding of formal elements and correlate that understanding with individual expression. Developing their own lines of experimentation and study, students select media according to individual expressive needs. The student will continue to improve in techniques, content and level of sophistication.

ART 330: Painting II

At this level, students begin to use painting as a more personal, creative means of expression. Beginning level skills are developed toward greater technical proficiency and personal visual formulation. Students examine historical and theoretical trends and contemporary methodologies and strive to apply them to their work.

ART 331: Painting III

Building on knowledge gained in ART 330, students begin to use painting as a more personal, creative means of expression. Beginning level skills are developed toward greater technical proficiency and personal visual formulation. Students examine historical and theoretical trends and contemporary methodologies and strive to apply them to their work. The student will continue to improve in techniques, content and level of sophistication.

ART 334: Watercolor II

This intermediate-level course expands technical proficiency and creativity as students continue experimentation with the unique attributes of the watercolor medium. Students demonstrate their proficiency through practical exercises, risk-taking, ambitious assignments, class critiques, a self-designed series project and a final portfolio. Students may also be asked to prepare and present a class demonstration and/or conduct a class critique.

ART 345: Sculpture II

This sculpture course introduces students to new materials and processes based upon their own ideation and project frameworks. Students will explore ideas through the construction of maquettes and process frameworks. Students are expected to research and apply their understanding of contemporary art. Considerable outside of class work will be required. Each student is expected to understand and use studio safety best practices.

ART 346: Sculpture III

This sculpture course challenges students to explore materials and processes based upon their own ideation and the project frameworks. Students will explore new ideas through conceptual drawings and through the construction of maquettes. Students are expected to research and apply their understanding of contemporary art. Considerable outside of class work will be required. Each student is expected to understand and use studio safety best practices.

ART 350: Topics in Art

These courses offer students in-depth study of topics in art that are not part of the regularly scheduled course offerings. The topics are announced before registration.

ART 360: Photography II

This course requires students to refine techniques introduced in ART 260 and expand their knowledge of the camera, printing and various photographic methods, including digital imaging, artificial light and color photography. This course also emphasizes the development of a photographic style and the creation of a cohesive body of work. A manually adjustable, interchangeable lens digital camera is required. (A digital single lens reflex camera [DSLR] with a normal [non-wide/non-telephoto] prime [non-zoom] lens is strongly recommended.)

ART 361: Photography III

This course builds upon and refines techniques introduced in ART 260 and 360 and expands students’ knowledge of the camera, printing and various photographic methods, including digital imaging, artificial light and color photography. This course also emphasizes the continued development of a photographic style and the creation of a cohesive portfolio. A manually adjustable, interchangeable lens digital camera is required. (A digital single lens reflex camera [DSLR] with a normal [non-wide/non-telephoto] prime [non-zoom] lens is strongly recommended.)

ART 370: Ceramics II

This course continues the process of ART 270 with advanced work on the wheel and in hand-building techniques. Students produce a body of work that demonstrates individual expression and advanced technical proficiency. Emphasis is on glaze chemistry, kiln-firing principles and contemporary developments in the field. Fine craftsmanship and personal vision emerge through additional studio experience and use of materials.

ART 371: Ceramics III

This course continues the process of ART 370 with advanced work on the wheel and in hand-building techniques. Students produce a body of work that demonstrates individual expression and advanced technical proficiency. Greater emphasis is on glaze chemistry, kiln firing principles and contemporary developments in the field. Fine craftsmanship and personal vision emerge through additional studio experience and use of materials.

ART 410: Drawing V

Course activities at this level are determined largely on an individual basis. With the instructor’s guidance, each student learns to synthesize earlier drawing experiences into strong visual statements, building upon them to a new creative level.

ART 411: Drawing VI

Course activities at this level are determined largely on an individual basis, building on knowledge gained in ART 410. With the instructor’s guidance, each student learns to synthesize earlier drawing experiences into strong visual statements, building upon them to a new creative level. Students will prepare work for exhibition using professional standards as they prepare for their Capstone exhibition.

ART 425: Professional Practices and Portfolio

This course provides an environment where students gain insight and practical skills in regard to career planning and preparation. Students will use an active peer review process in understanding and developing their final portfolios. The drafting of self-identity promotional portfolios, which represent their individual strengths, artistic skill and creative thinking will be required. Students will learn how to promote themselves through research and entry into competitive exhibition opportunities, creating cover letters, resumes and artist statements.

ART 426: Gallery and Portfolio Presentation

Students will finalize their self-identity promotional materials, hone their interviewing and presentation skills and present their final portfolios during the campus capstone event. In addition, students are required to prepare their work for exhibition, understand exhibition requirements and mount a group exhibition of their work in the college galleries.

ART 430: Painting IV

At this level students are expected to work with considerable independence, demonstrating technical proficiency, craftsmanship and an understanding of theoretical concepts. Students are expected to produce distinctive, personal works of art that display a high degree of finish, aesthetic sophistication and honesty.

ART 431: Painting V

Building on the skills gained in ART 430, students are expected to work with considerable independence, demonstrating technical proficiency, craftsmanship and an understanding of theoretical concepts. Students are expected to produce distinctive, personal works of art that display a high degree of finish, aesthetic sophistication and honesty. Advanced students will use this course to prepare for their Senior Exhibition.

ART 434: Watercolor III

At this level students are expected to work with considerable independence, demonstrating technical proficiency, craftsmanship and understanding of art theory. Students are expected to produce distinctive, personal work that demonstrates a high degree of finish, aesthetic sophistication and honesty.

ART 445: Sculpture IV

This advanced course challenges students to learn new techniques and processes, while building upon the foundations of prior work. Students explore three dimensional solutions to art-making and create individually expressive contemporary works of art. Advanced research, problem-solving and self-criticism are major parts of this course. Outside of class work will be demanding and all studio safety best practices will be modeled.

ART 446: Sculpture V

This advanced course challenges students to research and employ multiple techniques and processes, while building upon the knowledge gained in ART 445. Students explore three dimensional solutions to art making and create individually expressive contemporary works of art. Students will research contemporary concepts of multi-media and installation-based sculpture. Advanced research, problem-solving and self-criticism are major parts of this course. Outside of class work will be demanding and all studio safety best practices will be modeled.

ART 460: Photography IV

Students in this course explore image-making options in photography. Emphasis falls on producing consistently high quality photographs while developing a single artistically cohesive body of work. Each student produces a professional level portfolio. A manually adjustable, interchangeable lens digital camera is required (a digital single lens reflex camera [DSLR] with a normal [non-wide/non-telephoto] prime [non-zoom] lens is strongly recommended).

ART 461: Photography V

Students in this course further explore image-making options in photography. Emphasis falls on producing consistently high quality photographs while developing a single artistically cohesive body of work. Each student produces a professional-level portfolio. A manually adjustable, interchangeable lens digital camera is required (a digital single lens reflex camera [DSLR] with a normal [non-wide/non-telephoto] prime [non-zoom] lens is strongly recommended).

ART 470: Ceramics IV

In this course, a major series of wheel-built and/or hand-built forms continue to occupy students for at least half of the term. Students gain further experience in firing electric, gas, salt and Raku kilns. Benefiting from frequent critique sessions and visits to museums and practicing potters, students foster a more critical, mature view of their work. Emphasis is on consistently producing work of individual creativity and high quality.

ART 471: Ceramics V

Building on the knowledge gained in ART 470, the studio work in a major series of wheel-built and/or hand-built forms occupies students for at least half of the term. Students gain further experience in firing electric, gas, salt and Raku kilns. Benefiting from frequent critique sessions and visits to museums and practicing potters, students foster a more critical, mature view of their work. Emphasis is on consistently producing work of individual creativity and high quality.

ART 485: Art Internship

An advanced internship is required for all students in the studio art major. This requirement will provide art students with experiences in art related businesses and nonprofits organizations. Art majors may arrange internships with correlative art or design businesses, art centers, design firms, artist and artisan studios. An art faculty member serves as the student’s faculty sponsor. Internships are arranged through the Harrington Center with approval and evaluation by the advisor, faculty sponsor and the Harrington Center. Specific information is available from the Harrington Center. Graded pass/fail.