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Undergraduate Program

Program 2 - Visual Arts


The Program in Visual Arts allows interested undergraduates to explore the modes of thought and practice of visual mediums and to develop their creative faculties in connection with a general program of humanistic education. Instruction is offered in ceramics, digital and darkroom photography, drawing, painting, printmaking, sculpture, film and video production, film history, and contemporary criticism.

Prerequisites: Two courses in the Department of Art and Archaeology and two studio courses in the Program in Visual Arts. In addition, in early April of the sophomore year students must submit an application and a portfolio to the Program in Visual Arts administrator and, upon favorable recommendation by the director, are admitted to Program Two. In special circumstances, applications are accepted as early as the fall of the sophomore year or as late as the beginning of the spring term of the junior year.

Course Requirements: A total of 12 courses from the Department of Art and Archaeology and the Program in Visual Arts, of which at least four should be from the Department of Art and Archaeology and at least six from the Program in Visual Arts. The Art and Archaeology courses must satisfy three of the five distribution areas (see II.1.b. above) and must include one course that deals with some aspect of art in the modern period (nineteenth century to the present, such as Art 212, 213, 214, 344, 348, 350, 376, 393, 452, 456, 458) as well as Art 400/401 (Junior Seminar). The Visual Arts courses must include three 200-level courses in at least two different media, Visual Arts 392 (this course does not count as an Art and Archaeology course), and two additional 300- or 400-level courses. Visual Arts 392 is normally taken in the fall of the junior year but in special cases (e.g., if the student plans to be abroad that term) can be taken in the fall of the sophomore year or, if absolutely necessary, the fall of the senior year.

Cognates: Normally no cognates are accepted for the program.

Junior Independent Work: Program Two junior independent work consists of both an art historical and studio component. During the fall, students enroll in Art 400 (Junior Seminar), which introduces them to methodologies of art history. In addition, under the direction of the instructor of their junior seminar students write a fall independent paper addressing the state of the literature and various methodologies appropriate to a particular topic. At the same time, students engage in independent studio work that begins in the fall term and continues through the spring. In the fall of the junior year, students must select two advisers, at least one of whom must be a continuing faculty member in the Program in Visual Arts, and complete the Program 2/Certificate Adviser Approval Form. Weekly discussion with advisers and periodic open studios take place throughout the year. The spring-term grade for junior independent work represents an evaluation of the entire year’s studio work by the advisers.

Senior Independent Work: The senior independent work is a major studio project and exhibition completed by the end of the spring term. In the fall of the senior year students select two faculty advisers from the Program in Visual Arts (at least one of whom must be a continuing faculty member) and a third adviser from the Department of Art and Archaeology and complete the Program 2/Certificate Adviser Approval Form. Again, discussions with advisers and open studios continue throughout the year as students work on their senior projects. The grade for the senior independent work is the average of the grades given by the all the Program in Visual Arts faculty who view the senior exhibition.

Senior Departmental Examination: The senior examination takes the form of a critical discussion of the thesis work. About a month prior to the examination, the student will submit to the director of the Program in Visual Arts a written summary of the work. The work will then be presented at an informal exhibition, and the three advisers will discuss with the student the visual work and written statement. The grade for the oral examination will be an average of the three grades given by the advisers participating in the examination.