Studio Arts Courses

Course Requirements

The student who wishes to moderate into the program and graduate with a degree in studio arts must complete the following course components:

  • Junior Activities
  • Senior Seminar
  • Two art history courses (one to be completed by the time of Moderation. Additionally, the Studio Arts faculty recommends that one of the art history courses be based in contemporary post 1945 art)

Four completed studio courses from among the following:

Click here to see the current course offerings for Studio Arts


Level I Studio Courses

Cybergraphics I Art 100 (Integrated Arts)
An introduction to graphic creation using the computer as a compositional tool. The imaging potentials of a variety of graphic applications are discussed and demonstrated during the first half of the course; the second half focuses on individual projects. Basic computer skills are required; minimal ability in Adobe Photoshop or a comparable application is recommended.

Painting I Art 101-102
An introduction to the fundamentals of painting, with an emphasis on working from still life, landscape, and the figure. Students explore composition, color, gesture, surface, shape, space, and volume, as well as new approaches to working up images. Work is done in oil paints, on small to very large canvases. A background in drawing is helpful.

Sculpture I Art 105-106
Through an exploration of materials, process, and site, this course addresses several ideas relevant to contemporary art. What is the relationship between form and content? When does the process of making become more important than the "object" produced? What is the relationship of craft to art production? How and when does installation become just another material? How can one's own body become both subject and site for a work of art? These ideas are explored through a series of projects as well as through readings, slides of historical and contemporary art, and class discussion. Technical demonstrations include woodshop, mold making, casting, and welding.

Drawing I Art 107-108
The basic concepts of drawing are presented, and students explore problems related to perspective, perceiving forms in light, handling space through hand-eye coordination, and drawing as a visual thought process.

Printmaking I Art 109-110
Students learn to express themselves artistically using the tools and methods of the printmaker. They acquire a basic understanding of the techniques used to produce collographs, woodcuts, etchings, and intaglio prints, and are introduced to multiple-run color printing.

Level II Studio Courses

Thematic and technique-based studio classes in painting, drawing, printmaking, cybergraphics, and sculpture. Examples of 200-level courses follow.

Cybergraphics II Art 200 Integrated Arts
This class addresses advanced strategies for image creation and enhancement in graphics applications, using a broad selection of applications, including Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, Maya, and Final Cut. Emphasis is placed on how the programs work together and support one another. Students create prints, text, and animation in the context of contemporary art issues ranging from digital prints and process presentations to documentation. Prerequisite: Art 100, an equivalent introductory digital-imaging class, or permission of the instructor.

Painting II Art 202
While this course extends the perceptual articulation and essential painting skills learned in Painting I, class projects also develop approaches to painting based in abstraction and in the imagination. Particular attention is given to understanding the various roles that color can play in creating structure and meaning in a painting. Self-motivation, extensive work outside of class, and a commitment to acquiring the necessary physical materials are required.

Painterly Print Art 202
A monotype (a.k.a. the painterly print) is essentially a printed painting. While it is technically the simplest form of printmaking , it is also the one that strives *to honor the individuality of the hand's painterly impulse. For this reason, monotypes are a wonderful tool for a painter to quickly develop ideas of color, light, shape, and composition that are not only informative to the painting process, but are an end in themselves. This class will explore the process of the monotype in relation to painting using both traditional techniques and experimental ones that evolve in response to the pursuit of student's individual ideas.
While specific assignments will be given in class, independence in direction and motivation is essential. This course's success depends on the evolving dialogue between your visual ideas and the monotype process. This means that you must come to this course with visual ideas that you intend to develop, whether abstract or representational, or both. Painting 1 is the minimum requirement but it is highly recommended that you have had some experience with the pursuit of individual ideas in painting. Material needs will vary among individuals, but an array of oil painting materials and high quality paper will be required by all.

Sculpture II / Digital II: Fast, Cheap, and Out of Control Art 205 Integrated Arts
Digital technologies are proving themselves indispensable in the creation of both still and moving images. This course explores a more physical use of these technologies. Among other things, it covers the use of microcontrollers to sense the world, control motors and other devices, and create interactivity. Participants try their hands at robotics, physical computing, or interactive installations. The emphasis is on cheap hardware, free software, fast development, and an all-out effort to demystify technology. Limited enrollment.

Sculpture II Art 206
Students work on four projects over the semester in which they take an idea, develop it, and extend it by working with shifts in scale, process, and materials. Emphasis is also placed on working with the physical experience of sculpture, e.g., students consider the differences between an object that can be held in one's hand and a freestanding structure that one can walk around. Students use a range of materials from sources that include art supply stores, hardware/gardening centers, and 99-cent shops. Studio work and group critique are supplemented by presentations of contemporary art, readings, and a field trip to New York City galleries. Prerequisite: Sculpture 1 or permission of instructor.

After the Monument
Giant bronze statues in parks? Mosaics in train stations? Big steel sculptures in corporate lobbies? "For such an advanced civilization as ours to be without images that are adequate to it is as serious a defect as being without memory".-Werner Herzog This course will explore contemporary attitudes towards placing art in the social/public space. This will be both a practical and theoretical course. Students should be sufficiently proficient in media that will allow them to create three or four projects in the public realm. Class time will be dedicated to group critiques, the discussion of readings and slide presentations. Among the topics covered will be: controversies in public art, the convergence of art, architecture and urban planning, relational art, the legacy of Joseph Beuys, % for the arts programs, dialogue-based public art, activist public art, and international art festivals.

Drawing II: Drawing from Nature Art 207
The term "drawing from nature" is used both literally and figuratively. Part of this course is analytical in nature and utilizes perceptual work (including observation through microscopes) to acquire visual information about basic structures in nature, growth patterns, and other phenomena less than immediately apparent to the eye. In addition, this visual data is adopted for continued exploration on individual drawing projects. Prerequisite: Art 107-108.

Drawing II: Mixed Media Art 208
An exploration of drawing materials, ranging from traditional drawing media to collage and transfers. The class works from memory, dreams, and texts, rather than from perception. Color theory is examined and emphasized.

Printmaking II: Book Projects, Text, and Prints Art 210
Offered in conjunction with Cybergraphics II, this examination of the book as an art object includes traditional handmade plate-making processes for illustration and imagery. Building on the layout and image software programs introduced in Cybergraphics II, students explore the translation of relevant output methods of digital media into photographic printing processes, including letterpress, silkscreen, photo etching, lithography or cyanotype for text and photographic imagery; and intaglio or relief printing for handmade imagery. Prior printmaking experience is strongly advised. Permission of the instructor is required.

The Practice of Sculpture Art 235 Art History
This course investigates the practical aspects of making sculpture together with a detailed study of the history of modern sculpture in Europe and North America. Weekly lectures focus on the work of an individual sculptor or group of sculptors, and a workshop illustrates some aspect of studio practice. Students learn firsthand how technical processes and the character of materials affect the development of modern sculpture—in clay, wax, and plaster modeling, and in different methods of casting, carving, welded construction, and fabrication. In bridging the concerns of the academic discipline of art history and studio practice, students undertake significant critical reading and writing for the course while also being invited to develop independent studio projects based on course work.

Level III Studio Courses

Upper-level studio classes in painting, drawing, printmaking, cybergraphics, and sculpture. Studios in painting and drawing may have two levels, corresponding to intermediate and advanced. Admission is by portfolio, though students seeking to enroll are expected to have completed at least one basic course in the chosen discipline. In order to achieve full circulation through this structure, students are strongly encouraged not to repeat courses taught by the same faculty.

Cybergraphics III: Virtual SculptureArt 300 Integrated Arts
This course employs 3-D modeling programs for the development of hypothetical structures and environments. Through midterm, the class includes instruction in the use of basic and advanced 3-D applications. The second half focuses on the creation of digital structures and their placement in real or virtual environments. There is an emphasis on scientific source material.

Painting III Art 301
Intended for juniors and seniors who are concentrating in the studio arts, as well as anyone who has completed Painting II, this course simultaneously expands students' vocabulary for painting and help them find their voice. Students explore alternative formats—e.g., shaped and multipaneled paintings—as well as alternative strategies to the static image and the juxtaposition of different styles and techniques. Students work independently to develop a personal train of thought in their work and ultimately produce a series of related works.

Art Talk Art 303
The class consists of two alternating parts. The first part takes place in New York City, where students visit galleries, museums, and studios. The second part is a seminar on campus in which students learn how to present and document their work and develop portfolios. They also become familiarized with the ins and outs of computer presentations, grant research, etc. Open to 10 students by permission of the instructor.

Sculpture III Art 305
An advanced-level sculpture course that deals with all aspects of construction in a wide variety of materials, especially metals and plastics. Students address actual and illusionary movement, the dynamics of scale in relation to the body, light as transparency and reflection, and the communication of energy through the articulation of space. Open to eight qualified students.

Drawing III Art 307
This advanced studio course explores the range of drawing in its traditional and experimental forms, from the observed to the imagined. Particular attention is given to expanding the sources of visual information upon which a student may draw for personal imagery. The goal is to help students locate ideas essential to their art and to develop those ideas in processes of drawing. In addition to classroom assignments, students are expected to develop independent drawing projects in consultation with the professor. Prerequisites: Art 107–108 and Art 207.

Printmaking III: Photogravure Art 310
Photogravure, popularized in the 19th century, is a continuous-tone photographic intaglio process. A copper plate is etched gradually from the deepest shadows to the brightest highlights, producing a much wider range of tones than any other photographic process. As beautiful as photogravure can be, it is a difficult process to understand and master; this course, therefore, requires a great commitment in time and independent planning. Prerequisite: prior photo experience or a solid printmaking background.

Fine Art Photography/Photographic Fine Art Art 323 Photography
This course provides conceptual and technical solutions for the continuously increasing role that photography plays in the fine arts. Directed primarily at studio arts majors, it involves no darkroom work. Students use slides, Polaroid prints, found images, or digital output to make artworks employing photography. For the first several weeks, assignments are given; after that, students pursue individual projects.


Junior Events Art 330
Students will present an exhibition of their work in mid October and conduct a Craft Fair in early December as well as attend Visiting Artist lectures. Required of all studio arts majors; open to other Arts Division majors as space allows.

Senior Seminar Art 405-406
All studio arts majors (and interested photography majors) engaged in Senior Projects meet for a weekly seminar/critique/discussion. The aim is to create a forum for a continual exchange of views and ideas among senior students and to encourage and develop skills in articulating ideas in speech and writing. The seminar's form and subject change from week to week but include writing assignments, group critiques of student work, discussions of exhibitions on campus, and conversations with guest speakers.


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