Art & Art History

Course Descriptions: Studio Art

Regular course offerings in Studio Art:

231. Creative Process
In this studio course students learn how to develop an idea over time. Students are expected to focus on one concept and develop it more fully each week as the semester progresses. All media and art forms are acceptable, including the written word, video, performance, painting, photography, sound, construction, etc. Though centered upon the student and their ability to be objective about their work, it also demands they help others to see the values, problems, and potentials in their work. Thoughtful class participation in the form of discussion during weekly presentations and critiques is expected from each student. Prerequisite: One course of Studio Art, Music, Theatre or Creative Writing or permission of the instructor.

241. Environmental Art
This studio course introduces students to the basic concepts of environmental art through a series of environmental art projects made both inside and outside, in the field. The curriculum centers on deepening student awareness of how a range of materials and spaces can be used to make environmental art projects. The course is open to both individual and collaborative projects. Students regularly engage in studio work, followed by related class discussions and critiques. Readings & screenings about environmentally engaged artists coincide with studio projects. Prerequisite(s): One Studio Art course or permission of instructor.

245. Photography
This studio course serves as an introduction to digital photography, and will cover basic camera skills and photographic processes, although course emphasis is on the conceptual and creative uses of photography as an artistic medium. Students will gain the technical and critical skills to fulfill creative goals. Complex relationships between imagery, composition and meaning will be explored through creative assignments, lectures, discussions and readings. The work of contemporary artists working in photography will be explored at length.

251. Visual & Critical Thinking
This studio course is an introduction to a rigorous investigation of conceptual, technical, and critical skills common to diverse areas of creative production. The curriculum is interdisciplinary and designed to emphasize the development of studio fundamentals, through technical practice and conceptual thinking. Basic visual design principles are covered, while contemporary and historical examples are presented through lectures and applied to studio problems.

261. Intermedia_D
This studio course explores the theories and concepts of drawing from a contemporary perspective. The curriculum, while focusing on basic skills and concepts of drawing, is interdisciplinary in nature. In addition to drawing fundamentals, the course will place emphasis on connecting conceptual thinking to one’s broader creative practice. Contemporary and historical examples of artists working within such a creative practice are covered through lectures and screenings.

271. Intermedia_P
This studio course will focus on the fundamentals of painting in form, concept and technique. The curriculum introduces the basic skills and theories as they pertain to a contemporary painting practice, while exploring interdisciplinary applications of the medium. Basic materials and processes are covered in facilitating students to move from concept to completed work, so as to form an understanding as to how painting positions itself within the world. Relevant examples of artists and their works are provided in the form of lectures, screenings, and readings.

281. Intermedia_S
This studio course introduces the methodologies and concerns consistent with the creation of sculptural works of art. Drawing upon the basic skills, processes, and concepts of working with three dimensional forms, the curriculum examines the expansiveness of sculpture’s inherently interdisciplinary definition. In addition to sculpture fundamentals the course engages the critical and theoretical concepts as they pertain to the relationships between meaning and making. Artists whose works exemplify historical and contemporary approaches are examined through lectures, screenings, and readings.

Art 291. Intermedia_VNM
This studio course introduces students to an interdisciplinary grounding in the techniques, concepts, and empirical experiences they will need to engage video and new media technologies in the making of art. Students develop the necessary conceptual and technical grounding to engage the creation of imagery through digital means by studying various video and computer imaging strategies. Contemporary artists working in the mediums of video and new media are examined through lectures and screenings.

330. Video Intensive
This studio course examines video as a medium for artistic expression and inquiry. The curriculum engages students in an exploration of the video-making process and develops technical skills associated with relevant video equipment. Methodologies for the use of video as an art-making tool are explored, while contemporary and historical examples of works within the medium are presented through screenings. Prerequisite: ART 291 or permission of the instructor.

335. New Media Intensive
This is an advanced studio course in the study of the intersection between art and technology. A broad interdisciplinary investigation of the skills, concepts, and applications that are necessary to develop a creative practice versed in the technologies of our time are pursued. Particular emphasis is placed on the conceptual implications of choosing such a practice, and how those implications inform each student’s work. Current practitioners within the discipline are examined through lectures, readings, and screenings. Prerequisite: ART 291 or permission of the instructor.

340. Photography Intensive
This studio course examines the production and pertinent concepts of photographic based images. The curriculum is primarily centered on camera based work, while allowing for the exploration of other methods of photographic image creation such as scanners, cell phones, and copiers. Technical instruction and principles of composition are employed to form an understanding as to how the construction and manipulation of photographic images implicate form and meaning. Contemporary photographic based image-makers are examined through screenings, readings, and lectures. Prerequisite: ART 251, 261, 271, 281, or 291, or permission of the instructor.

350. Advanced Studio_D
This studio course is an interdisciplinary exploration of advanced studio techniques and conceptualization originating from a drawing perspective. Students engage projects thematically and pursue their own interests in diverse mediums and hybrid forms. Particular emphasis is placed on each student’s research and development practices as it relates to the conceptualization and execution of each of their works. Contemporary and historic examples of artists working within the designated themes of the course are introduced through screenings, lectures, readings, and independent study. Prerequisite: ART 251, 261, 271, 281, or 291, or permission of the instructor.

360. Advanced Studio_P
This studio course is an interdisciplinary exploration of advanced studio techniques and conceptualization originating from a painting perspective. Students engage projects thematically and pursue their own interests in diverse mediums and hybrid forms. Particular emphasis is placed on each student’s research and development practices as it relates to the conceptualization and execution of each of their works. Contemporary and historic examples of artists working within the designated themes of the course are introduced through screenings, lectures, readings, and independent study. Prerequisite: ART 251, 261, 271, 281, or 291, or permission of the instructor.

370. Advanced Studio_S
This studio course is an interdisciplinary exploration of advanced studio techniques and conceptualization originating from a sculptural perspective. Students engage projects thematically and pursue their own interests in diverse mediums and hybrid forms. Particular emphasis is placed on each student’s research and development practices as it relates to the conceptualization and execution of each of their works. Contemporary and historic examples of artists working within the designated themes of the course are introduced through screenings, lectures, readings, and independent study. Prerequisite: ART 251, 261, 271, 281, or 291, or permission of the instructor.

392 Junior Seminar: Contemporary Practices
Required of all majors in Studio Art, this interdisciplinary course provides a practical and theoretical framework for students to independently develop their creative practice through research and studio work. Students begin to define their individual practice by writing an artist statement and developing a professional portfolio. The course is designed to prepare each student for the rigors of the Studio Art Senior Seminar, and culminates in a formal proposal for the Senior Capstone Experience project to be produced in the student’s senior year. Prerequisite: Advanced Studio or permission of the instructor.

294, 394, 494. Special Topics
The intensive study of some selected art form, movement, or other specialized subject in studio art. See the Department of Art and Art History’s website for descriptions of individual courses being offered.

Recent Studio Art special topics courses include:

Art and Language, Art in the Anthropocene: Greener Art through Greener Chemistry, Art as Inquiry: The Artistic Laboratory, Installation and Site Specific Art, Visual Poetics, Bodies, Borders & Shrinking Space, Kinetic Sculpture, Art for Social Change, The Performative Object, Interventions, Conceptual Art, The Art of Appropriation, Video Art and Theory.

290, 390, 490. Internships
295, 395, 495. On-campus Research 296, 396, 496. Off-campus Research

397, 497. Independent Study in Studio Art
Exceptional students in their Junior or Senior years seeking to define their own course of study, distinct from the course offerings in the department, may submit a formal application to do so. The deadline for applications is the end of the 7th week of the preceding semester, and must consist of a 1-page written proposal for the student’s course of study, a 20 image portfolio of recent work, a corresponding list of titles and materials, and an artist statement. Proposals will be reviewed and notice will be given by the department’s faculty. If the student’s application is accepted, notification of acceptance will be accompanied by an assigned studio advisor to facilitate the course of study during the desired semester. Prerequisite: Advanced Studio

491. Studio Art Senior Seminar (Fall)
Required of all graduating seniors preparing for the Studio Senior Capstone Experience, this course instigates a concept-driven and research-supported project. Guided by a faculty advisor and other studio art faculty, the seminar is an intensive exploratory period of weekly studio work and research with feedback from peers. The curriculum prepares each student for the culminating Spring Thesis exhibition by guiding them through the process of developing a coherent body of work, including the ideas and influences driving that work, and the practical issues that need be navigated in order to fully realize each student’s vision. Each student’s performance in this non-credit bearing course will influence their grade earned at the completion of the Studio Senior Capstone Experience. Should be taken in the fall semester of senior year. Prerequisite: 392: Contemporary Practices.

492. Studio Art Senior Seminar (Spring)
Required of all graduating seniors preparing for the Studio Senior Capstone Experience, this course is a continuation of the intensive weekly studio work and research begun in Art 491 culminating in the Spring Thesis exhibition. Each student’s performance in this non-credit bearing course will influence their grade earned at the completion of the Studio Senior Capstone Experience. Should be taken in the spring semester of senior year. Prerequisite: 392: Contemporary Practices and 491: Studio Art Senior Seminar (Fall).

SCE. Studio Senior Capstone Experience
Required of all graduating seniors within the studio concentration, this course is defined by each student’s engagement with a project of active learning and integration of materials and concepts within the major. A continuation of the work initiated in the Studio Art Senior Seminar, students are guided by a faculty advisor and other studio art faculty. The Capstone is an intensive period of advanced independent studio practice with feedback from peers. Students employ their course of study from within the department to think critically, conduct research, and independently produce a substantial body of work. The culmination of this course is the Spring Thesis exhibition in the Kohl Gallery, conceived and produced by the course’s participants, and the associated supporting activities. The SCE will be accorded Pass, Fail, or Honors, and, upon successfully completing it, the student will receive four credits. Prerequisite: Studio Art Senior Seminar.