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"I see little of more importance to the future of our country and our civilization than full recognition of the place of the artist."
President John F. Kennedy, at Amherst College
, 1963.


Cory Shea, video stills from Reflection Grave, © 2008

STUDIO ARTS

Undergraduate Program

Bachelor of Fine Arts: Studio Art

Bachelor of Arts: Studio Art

Application for studio space

Undergraduate Studio Contracts

 

Disciplines within the Studio Art Program:

Animation
Art Education
Ceramics
Digital Media: Still Imagery
Digital Media: Time Based         

Painting
Photography
Printmaking
Sculpture
Interdisciplinary Studies

Studio Art Course Listing

B.F.A.Studio Art Check Sheet

B.F.A Art Education Check Sheet

Art Minor

 

 


How to Apply

Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Studio Art

The Studio Arts Program offers a broad view of contemporary art that is both innovative and experimental. The program begins with a foundations year that provides a rigorous grounding in interdisciplinary art making. By the end of the second year each student is guided to develop a focused expertise and a plan of study. While there are recommended sequences of classes, undergraduates are encouraged to diversify their educational experience through open electives. Flexibility is emphasized to develop both an individual disciplined direction in approaching media, materials and techniques and, in turn, receptivity to applications in new genres. Additionally, team-taught seminars afford opportunities for in-depth conceptual and critical explorations within the context of trans-disciplinary practices. The degree program culminates in a thesis project in the student’s final semester.

*Students interested in Interdisciplinary Studies will form a committee of two full-time Studio Art faculty members and develop an academic plan of study along with a sequence of courses that address their particular areas of interest.

Students intending to follow a discipline sequence will first meet with the advisor associated with that discipline. Acceptance into a Discipline is by portfolio review. The disciplines within the Studio Art Program are as follows:

Disciplines

Advisor

Animation

Patricia Galvis y Assmus

Art Education

Martha Taunton

Ceramics

Nancy LaPointe

Digital Media: Still Imagery

Susan Jahoda

Digital Media: Time Based

Jenny Vogel

Interdisciplinary Studies

*Form a Committee of 2 Full-Time Studio Art Faculty

Painting

Jeanette Cole

Photography

Susan Jahoda

Printmaking

Francis Merrigan

Sculpture

Benjamin Jones



 

DISCIPLINES

Disciplines consist of thematic groupings of select courses offered throughout the Department of Art, Architecture and Art History and the Five College Consortium (Amherst, Hampshire, Mt. Holyoke and Smith Colleges). Applications of focused expertise include sculpture, ceramics, painting, drawing, photography, printmaking, new genres (digital media, still and time based, animation, installation, performance), and art education.

As well as the aforementioned, the Department of Art, Architecture and Art History has the New York Professional Outreach Program (NY POP) that takes place between the Amherst campus and New York City. Students travel to New York City where they meet artists, curators, writers and gallery directors. Visiting Artists, curators, and other arts professionals are also an integral part of the program. The Summer Program in La Napoule, France is one of the few international programs available to students as an extension of the Foundations Program.


ANIMATION

Courses in animation introduce students to contemporary production processes and principles of animation that may be applied within classical 2- D, stop frame and digital media time based animation. Filmmaking, narrative and design, along with an emphasis on experimental, non-commercial applications are central to the pursuit of animation at the undergraduate level.

The Discipline of Animation: Course Sequence

Art 201 Advanced Drawing 3 cr
Art 202 Advanced Drawing Prob 3 cr
Art 297Q Animation Fundamentals 3 cr
Art 374 Animation I 3 cr
Art 397Q Animation II 3 cr
Art 404 BFA Degree Project 9 cr

Recommended Discipline Electives (Select 2) 6 cr
These courses may also be used as studio electives

Art 391 Intro Visual Culture 3 cr
Art 397N Digital Media: Still Image 3 cr
Art 297B Color Theory 3 cr


ART EDUCATION

The Art Education program at the undergraduate level prepares reflective and knowledgeable visual art educators who will be vital and inspiring teachers in diverse educational settings. Students graduating from the BFA Art Education program are prepared for Massachusetts Initial Licensure in the Visual Arts, grades PreK-8 and grades 5-12.  Art Education coursework includes studio art, art history, substantial field experiences, and courses in art education.  The program provides opportunities for students to develop their own artistic practice and technical skills in art making, to strengthen their understanding of historical and contemporary art and art from diverse traditions, and to be reflective and collaborative in their pedagogical approaches. BFA students are encouraged to apply for admission to the Art Education program in the sophomore year or first semester of the junior year.  The BFA Art Education licensure program is accredited by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education.

The Discipline of Art Education: Course Sequence

Art 310 Visual Arts & Hum. Dev. I 3 cr  

Art 220 or 221 Painting 3 cr

Art 311 Vis Arts & Hum. Dev. II 3 cr  

Art 240 Relief Printmaking 3 cr

Art 515 or 516 Advanced Prob 3 cr

Art 260 or 261 Sculpture 3 cr

*Art 256 Student Teaching Seminar 3 cr

Art 280 or 281 Ceramic 3 cr 

*Art Ed 501/502 Practicum 7 cr  

Art 230, 271, 297, 375, or 397 3 cr

*Art Ed 501/502 Practicum 6 cr

Art or Art History Elective 3 cr

*Passing scores on the MTEL required for course enrollment


Professional Electives 6 cr

Select any two from the following courses:
        Education: 270, 325, 351, 377, and 378
        Human Development: 252, 270, 370
        Psychology: 305, 350, 355

 

CERAMICS

After introductory courses are taken to insure a grasp of materials and techniques, students are encouraged to investigate and develop a technical and conceptual framework for making their work. A firm base of skills can be acquired by working in clay (throwing, hand building, glazing and firing) mold making, and plaster. In keeping with other vital programs in 3 D Studies, courses offered provide opportunities for individuals to explore object making, site and environmental practices.

The Discipline of Ceramics: Course Sequence:

Art 201 or Art 202 Adv Drawing
Art 280 Handbuilding 3 cr
Art 281 Throwing 3 cr
Art 397T Adv Throwing/Hand 3cr
Art 360 Sculpture 3 – Mold Making & Casting 3 cr
Art 480 3D Seminar 3 cr
Art 481 3D Seminar 3 cr
Art 402 BFA Project 9 cr

Recommended Discipline Electives:
Art 261 Sculpture 1 – Intro to Sculpture (required elective)
Art 260 Figure Sculpture
Art 297B Color Theory
Art 491A NYPOP

Suggested Sculpture Courses for Ceramics Discipline:
Art 261 Sculpture 1 – Intro to Sculpture 3cr Fall Spring
Art 265 Sculpture 2 – Construction Sculpture 3cr Spring
Art 360 Sculpture 3 – Mold Making & Casting 3cr Fall
Art 361 Sculpture 4 – Sculpture in Context*
*requires Sculpture 1 as a prerequisite


DIGITAL MEDIA: STILL IMAGERY

Digital Media: Still engages the means, methods and practices of captured image making using digital formats. Students will learn the digital workflow while focusing on the formal concerns of pictorial organization using structured work methods. With an understanding that the computer itself is a meta-medium, students are encouraged to incorporate different media into their projects. Theoretical and historical information is presented in relation to technological advances in order for students to think about the computer as a means to an end rather than an end in itself.

DIGITAL MEDIA: TIME-BASED

Digital Media: Time- Based explores the creative possibilities of digital video and sound. Coursework focuses on a strong foundation of technical skills in relation to the histories of film and video in their larger cultural contexts. Students will be encouraged to investigate concepts of sound and time (duration, speed, rhythm) in relation to narrative, documentary and experimental practices.

The Discipline of Digital Media: Still / Time Based: Course Sequence

Art 201 Advanced Drawing 3 cr
Art 202 Advanced Drawing Prob 3 cr
Art 275 Digital Media: Still Imagery 3 cr
Art 345 Digital Media: Printmaking 3 cr
Art 347 Digital Media: Silkscreen 3 cr
Art 375 Digital Media: Time Based 3 cr
Art 401 BFA  Degree Project 9 cr

Required Discipline Electives: (Select 2) 6 cr
These courses may also be used as studio electives
Art 230 Photography I 3cr
Art 271 Intro. Digital Technology 3 cr
Art 297B Color Theory 3 cr
Art 376 Information Design I 3 cr
Art 398 Information Design II 3 cr
Art 391 Visual Culture 3 cr
Art 597CC Digital Media: Time Based Adv. 3 cr
Art 491A New York Professional Outreach 3 cr


PAINTING

Students in painting are expected to develop a high level of technical skill, as well as an integrated understanding of painting processes in relation to a broad range of media. They are equally encouraged to develop creative independence, an inquiring approach to the formal, technical and conceptual problems associated with the practice of painting, and to test the limits of both conventional and current practices. Courses are structured to ensure that each semester builds upon the previous semester in terms of content, skill development and individual research.

The Discipline of Painting: Course Sequence

Art 201 Advanced Drawing 3 cr
Art 202 Advanced Drawing Prob. 3 cr
Art 220 Painting I Representational: Oil 3 cr
Art 221 Painting II Representational: Waterbased 3 cr
Art 223 Painting III Thematic Painting 3 cr
Art 320 Painting IV Advanced Painting 3 cr
Art 420 Painting V Pre-Thesis 3 cr
Art 401 BFA  Degree Project 9 cr

Recommended Discipline Electives (Select 2) 6 cr
These courses may also be used as studio electives, 18 cr

Art 397N Digital Media: Still Image 3 cr    
Art 297CC Digital Media: Time Based 3 cr    
Art 397M Painterly Print: The Monotype 3 cr    
Art 391 Visual Culture 3 cr    
Art 297B Color Theory 3 cr    
Art 491A New York Professional Outreach 3 cr


PHOTOGRAPHY

Courses in photography are designed to provide students with a solid foundation in technical practice and conceptual, innovative and critical approaches. It is recommended that individuals learn both black and white and color, darkroom and digital processes and, in turn, broaden their definitions of photography within the context of art making. Opportunities to experiment with both traditional and non-traditional materials are presented in relation to explorations in “documentary,” performative, textual, and site-specific practices. All courses include a theoretical component where photography is discussed within the larger framework of visual culture. Students are also encouraged to take courses in digital media (still and time-based), photographic history and film studies.

The Discipline of Photography: Course Sequence

Art 201 Advanced Drawing 3 cr
Art 230 Photography I 3 cr
Art 231 Photography II 3 cr
Art 330 Photography III (color) 3 cr
Art 431 Photography IV 3 cr
Art 401 BFA Degree Projec 9 cr

Required Discipline Electives: (Select 2) 6 cr
These courses may also be used as studio electives

Art 391 Intro to Visual Culture 3 cr * (strongly advised)
Art 271 Intro. Digital Technology 3 cr
Art 275 Digital Media: Still Image 3 cr
Art 297DD Digital Media: Time Based 3 cr
Art 297B Color Theory 3 cr
Art 376 Information Design I 3 cr
Art 398 Information Design II 3 cr
Art 491A New York Professional Outreach 3 cr

 

PRINTMAKING

The discipline of Printmaking offers a full range of courses in all of the traditional print media: relief, intaglio, lithography, and screen printing, as well as digital. Our courses in printmaking combine a rigorous inquiry and research into the means, methods and practice of image making, thus enabling a solid foundation in technical, conceptual, and critical approaches. Students are encouraged to experiment and test the limits of both conventional and current digital printmaking practices in the realization of their individual ideas and interests.

There are courses in introductory and upper-level Intaglio (copper plate and photopolymer), Lithography (stone, aluminum plate, photo and offset), Digital Media: Still, Monotype, Serigraphy, and Relief Printmaking, as well as Book Arts. The relief and intaglio area has four American French Tool etching presses, the largest having a 48" x 84" press bed. The adjoining lithography area has a large stone library and three Charles Brand presses, two of which have 30" x 50" beds. The screen printing studio is entirely water-based and is equipped with darkroom facilities as well as a large vacuum-frame exposure unit. The lithography and intaglio areas share a flip top NuArc exposure unit for photo processes. The adjacent Digital Print Center has 3 Mac G5's and one PC computer workstation equipped with large flatbed, slide and film scanners and up to date software for digital imaging, and an 24" Epson 7600 and a 44" Epson 9880 inkjet printer for both archival color output and production of film positives for photo processes in all media.

Health and safety issues are of prime concern in the Printmaking area, and proper shop procedures and related health and safety issues are addressed at the beginning of each course. Access to the studios is open to all students currently enrolled in a print course for that studio.

The printmaking faculty have created working relationships with programs in France, Finland and Italy and encourages students to take advantage of exchange and internship opportunities abroad.


The Discipline of Printmaking: Course Sequence

Art 201 Advanced Drawing 3 cr
Art 202 Advanced Drawing Prob 3 cr

Required Discipline of Printmaking Electives: (Select 5) 15 cr
These courses may also be used as studio electives( Select 6) 18 cr
Art 240 Relief Printmaking I 3 cr
Art 241 Intaglio I 3 cr
Art 244 Lithography I 3 cr
Art 340 Relief II 3 cr
Art 342 Lithography II 3 cr
Art 341 Intaglio II 3 cr
Art 297BB Digital Imaging: Silkscreen 3 cr
Art 345 Digital Media: Photopolymer Gravure 3 cr
Art 275 Digital Media: Still Image 3 cr
Art 375 Digital Media: Time Based 3 cr
Art 397M Painterly Print: The Monotype 3 cr
Art 391 Visual Culture 3 cr
Art 297B Color Theory 3 cr
Art 491A New York Professional Outreach 3 cr
Art 401 BFA Degree Project 9 cr

 

SCULPTURE

Sculpture is a discipline rich with diversity and potential. From object oriented pieces to built environments, interventions and time based installations, the field of sculpture has grown to encompass not only work that is sculptural, but also work that is spatial and temporal. In all of its breadth, the study of contemporary sculpture however must begin as an exploration of form in space. Students begin this journey in courses focused on construction and modeling; developing the ability to see and to render using processes such as wood construction, metal fabrication, mold making and casting and direct sculpture in clay, foam and plaster.

Building upon these core competencies, upper level courses introduce increased degrees of independence and conceptual and material exploration. This new freedom is paired with increased critical dialogue of how each student goes about creating meaning through formal and conceptual strategies. In addition to the required discipline courses students are encouraged to take elective courses in Digital media, video and sound, photography and other processes that can be adapted to a spatial artmaking practice.

The Discipline of Sculpture: Course Sequence

Art 201 Advanced Drawing or

3cr

Fall

Spring

     Art 202 Drawing Problems

3cr

Fall

Spring

Art 261 Sculpture 1 – Intro to Sculpture

3cr

Fall

Spring

Art 265 Sculpture 2 – Construction Sculpture

3cr

 

Spring

Art 360 Sculpture 3 – Mold Making & Casting

3cr

Fall

 

Art 361 Sculpture 4 – Sculpture in Context*

3cr

 

 

Art 460 Sculpture 5 – Studio Practice

3cr

Fall

Spring

Art 461 Sculpture 6 – Advanced Sculpture

3cr

Fall

Spring

Art 402 BFA Degree Project

9cr

Fall

Spring



* Sculpture 4 may be substituted with one upper level studio in another discipline with permission of sculpture faculty advisor

Recommended Electives:

2D

 

3D

 

Other

 

Art 220/221 Painting 1 / 2

3cr

Art 280 Hand Building

3cr

Art 491 NYPOP

3cr

Art 230 Photo 1

3cr

Art 260 Figure Sculpture

3cr

Art 391 Visual Culture

3cr

Art 347 Digital Imaging and
Silk Screen

3cr

Sculpture Special Topics

3cr

Art 333 Art in the Expanded Field

3cr

Art 271 Intro Comp in Fine Art

3cr

 

3cr

 

3cr

Art 275 Digital: Still

3cr

 

3cr

 

3cr

 

 

 

 

 

 

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