Art

Chair: Michelle Acuff
Charly Bloomquist
Daniel Forbes
Justin Lincoln
Richard Martinez
Nicole Pietrantoni (on Sabbatical, Spring 2015)
Charles Timm-Ballard

Art Department Website »

The focus of the studio arts program is the enrichment of the intellect through the creation, expression, and interpretation of complex ideas within a wide range of visual and conceptual art forms. We serve the needs of students preparing for careers in the arts as well as the needs of students who want to develop their creative abilities in the service of other fields of inquiry.

Distribution: Courses completed in art apply to the fine arts distribution area.

Learning Goals: Upon graduation, a student will:

  • Major-Specific Areas of Knowledge
    • Demonstrate technical skills and processes associated with a wide variety of visual media. Generate images/objects. Interpret the visual language and meanings of art works. Pursue courses of study in both traditional materials/visually based art practices, and conceptually and technologically driven modes of art production.
  • Accessing Academic Community/Resources
    • Be informed by the critical and formal discourses of the discipline(s).
  • Communication
    • Interpret and express complex ideas in a wide range of sensorial, visual and verbal forms.
  • Critical Thinking
    • Acquire creative problem solving skills, and non-linear and abstract-thinking skills. Understand and position endeavors within a cultural and historic framework.
  • Research Experience
    • Have traveled to New York City for a research trip.

The Art major: A minimum of 35 credits including: one course from Art 104-109; 115; 130 or 160; one other beginning-level studio art class, one intermediate-level studio art class, one advanced-level studio art class in the area of concentration, Art 480, 490; Art History 103, 229, and one course dealing with non-modern art history (e.g. Asian Art, Renaissance Art, Greek and Roman Art, Aesthetics). The completion of Art History 229 is a prerequisite for Art 480 and 490.

For the student who desires to pursue graduate studies in studio art, it is recommended that additional courses be taken in the major in consultation with the adviser.

The Art minor: A minimum of 21 credits including: one Art History and Visual Culture Studies course, Art 115, plus nine credits from beginning-level studio art courses (which must include at least one 3-D class and one 2-D class) and an additional three credits of an intermediate-level studio art course.

For the art major with an art history and visual culture studies minor, no course may satisfy both the major and minor requirements.

The P-D-F option may not be used for classes within the art major or minor. Students having entered with a requirement to take Art 110 Intro to Visual Art Practices may substitute any of the courses from Art 104-109 in satisfaction of this requirement.

101, 102 Special Projects
2-4

Projects selected by studio art faculty for the beginning student to work in a group in a specific field or topic. Fee: required for Ceramics ($150), Painting ($120), Photography ($175), Printmaking ($150), or Sculpture ($150). Prerequisite: consent of instructor. Any current offerings follow.

104 Foundations: Digital Processes and Production
x, 3 Lincoln

This course explores the use of digital processes in the service of making 2-D images and 3-D objects. Topics include digital image manipulation, vector graphics, 3-D printing, 3-D scanning, 3-D modeling and CNC milling. Students will be encouraged to build connections between these virtual tools and conventional media in an engaging and interdisciplinary studio practice. May be taken for credit toward the Film and Media Studies major. Fee: $175.

106 Foundations: The Transformed Object
3, x Acuff

This course covers general concepts of 3-D making and leads students to create objects through hands-on experience with material processes. A variety of experimental methods will empower students to think fundamentally about creativity, design, material and space. Instruction will integrate the formal with the conceptual, and the technical with the experimental. This course seeks to make visible a variety of approaches to object making, especially those that reflect a contemporary sensitivity to and experience of materials. Fee: $150.

107 Foundations: The Contemporary Print and Artists’ Book
3, x Pietrantoni

This course introduces students to both traditional and digital methods of designing, printing, and disseminating prints and artists’ books. With an emphasis on foundational design concepts and visual communication, students explore the relationship between text and image through broadsides, posters, and a variety of book structures. Students will create and analyze prints and books through hands-on studio work, group and individual critiques, and the study of the cultural and historical significance of prints and books. Fee: $150.

108 Foundations: Approaches in Abstract Painting
x, 3 Martinez

This studio course will focus on providing students a strong foundation in various approaches to making abstract paintings and considering meaning in them. Students will become familiar with numerous techniques and variations of oil painting media, from gestural abstraction, hard edge painting, abstraction from the figure and landscape, and pure non-objective abstraction. A strong emphasis will also be placed on discovering how abstract painting functions in culture, both historically and in contemporary times. Students will work with painting concepts, skills, and materials with the use of oil paint and oil mediums. The course will explore color, spatial issues, form, paint handling, and idea development as it relates to abstraction. Group critiques involve articulation of terms and ideas. Fee: $120.

109 Foundations: Optical Imaging
3; not offered 2014-15

Using cameras and scanners to gather images, students will explore composition and color. Assignments will emphasize framing and editing within traditional camera formats, with attention to the rule of thirds and the golden ratio. The gray scale and hue, saturation, and luminance will be addressed using image manipulation software. Weekly readings will address cultural consumption of photographic images. Images produced by students will be critiqued to consider how they are constructed and how they might be read. This class will be open to all Whitman students. May be taken for credit toward the Film and Media Studies major. Fee: $150.

115 Beginning Drawing
3, 3 Fall: Staff, Timm-Ballard; Spring: Staff

Introduction and exploration of the basic techniques of drawing while refining perception skills using various media such as graphite, chalk, charcoal, conté, watercolor, and ink. A creative approach will utilize the elements of line, shape, texture, value, volume, and color. Various basic compositional effects will be explored through the use of the figure, landscape, and still life as a point of departure. Daily assignments and outside projects and critiques. Two two-hour studio sessions per week. Fee: $100.

123 Beginning Photography
3, x Bloomquist

Traditional Wet Lab. Provides a working knowledge of the mechanics of the camera and the basic skills necessary to develop black and white film and print fine art photographs. Assignments and classroom critiques also will consider various issues in photography such as composition, point of view, documentation, and the relationship of the subject and viewer. In addition to weekly assignments, students will participate in a group show of their works. Two two-hour sessions per week. Fee: $175.

125 Beginning Digital Printing
3, x Bloomquist

Fine Art Digital Printing. Images will be gathered using cameras and scanners. Aspects of Lightroom and Photoshop will be used to produce fine art digital prints. Assignments and classroom critiques will consider various issues in photography such as composition, point of view, documentation, and the relationship of the subject and viewer. In addition, students will participate in a group show of their works. Two two-hour studio sessions per week. Fee: $175.

130 Beginning Ceramics
3, 3 Timm-Ballard

The art of working with clay. Techniques include handbuilding sculptural and functional forms, the basics of throwing on the wheel, and glazing. Emphasis will be upon achieving an understanding of clay as a unique art medium. Two two-hour sessions per week. Fee: $150.

160 Beginning Sculpture
x, 3 Acuff

This course acquaints students with a set of materials, texts, and critical discourses that articulate the historical and contemporary concerns of sculpture. Guided by formal and conceptual considerations, students generate sculptural objects and installations in a variety of media. Lectures, readings, discussions and critiques surround and foster the hands-on making process. Fee: $150.

167 Beginning Painting
x, 3 Martinez

Beginning Painting focuses on providing students a strong foundation of painting concepts, skills, and materials with the use of oil paint and oil mediums. These courses explore color, form, paint handling and emphasize image content, visual language, and idea development. A diverse range of approaches to creating paintings is offered. Group critiques involve articulation of terms and ideas. Fee: $120.

170 Beginning Printmaking
3, 3 Fall: Pietrantoni, Spring: Staff    

Beginning Printmaking provides students with a basic understanding of the processes, concepts, and issues that inform contemporary printmaking. Students develop a broad range of both traditional and digital printmaking skills alongside an awareness of print media’s historical and cultural significance. Students create and analyze prints through hands-on studio work, group and individual critiques, and examination of prints from a variety of cultural, conceptual, and historical standpoints. As the semester progresses, students will gain experience in the creative and expressive possibilities of the printed image in contemporary artistic practice. Fee: $150.

180 Beginning New Genre Art Practices
3, 3 Lincoln

This course serves as an introduction to new artistic possibilities in today’s networked digital environment. Through exploratory practice students will gain familiarity with a range of topics such as internet culture, basic programming, and visual and audio re-mix. Other topics may include data visualization, performance art, and interactivity. Emphasis is placed on personally and socially meaningful experimentation. Instruction includes theme-based discussions and readings, video screenings, demonstration of software and hardware, and a series of assigned arts-based problems. Fee: $150.

201, 202 Special Projects
2-4

Projects selected by studio art faculty for the intermediate student to work in a group in a specific field or topic. Fee required for Ceramics ($150), Painting ($120), Photography ($175), Printmaking ($150), or Sculpture ($150). Prerequisite: consent of instructor. Any current offerings follow.

201 ST: Maker Spaces and Culture
4, x Lincoln and Schueller

A critical mass of professional and amateur artists, engineers, crafters, programmers, and entrepreneurs is redefining how things are "made" in contemporary culture. The community of "Makers" thrives on democratic educational practices and hands on, socially oriented experiences that have a measurable cultural impact. This interdisciplinary arts studio/laboratory provides a gentle introduction to contemporary tools, techniques, and philosophies used by the "Maker" community to realize ambitious creative projects. 3-D printing and tangible computing with Arduino micro controllers will provide a base of knowledge and skills upon which students will expand in several group projects. Students at all levels of experience are encouraged to register. Fee: $175. Distribution area: humanities or quantitative analysis.

215 Intermediate Drawing
3, x Staff

Compositional effects are further explored on an intermediate level through the use of the visual elements of line, shape, texture, value, volume, color, perspective, and abstraction. Personal use of combined media effects are explored. Weekly drawing assignments are given and critiqued in class. Two two-hour studio sessions per week. Prerequisite: Art 115 or consent of instructor. Fee: $100.

221, 222 Intermediate Independent Study
2-3, 2-3 Staff

Intermediate-level independent study within the areas of printmaking, ceramics, drawing/painting, new genre art forms, photography, sculpture, or other studio art practices at the intermediate level, under the supervision of one or more studio art faculty. Prerequisites: Art115, and the beginning course in the area that the independent study is proposed and consent of supervising instructor. Fee: required for Ceramics ($150), Painting ($120), Photography ($175), Printmaking ($150), or Sculpture ($150).

223 Intermediate Photography
x, 3 Bloomquist

Traditional Wet Lab Photography will be further explored. Using a variety of film types, we will explore 35mm, medium format, and 4x5 photography. Film will be processed by hand and prints will be made on traditional silver gelatin paper. Assignments and classroom critiques will consider and experiment with various issues in photography. In addition to weekly assignments, students will participate in a group show of their works. Two two-hour sessions per week. Prerequisite: Art 123 or consent of instructor. Offered every other year. Fee: $175.

225 Intermediate Digital Printing
x, 3 Bloomquist

Fine Art Digital Printing will be further explored. Images will be gathered using cameras and scanners. Darkroom aspects of Photoshop will be used to creatively manipulate images so that fine art digital prints can be produced. In addition to weekly assignments and critiques, students will participate in a group show of their works. Two two-hour sessions per week. Prerequisite: Art 125 or consent of instructor. Offered every other year. Fee: $175.

230 Intermediate Ceramics
3, x Timm-Ballard

A continuation of the creative development of both functional and nonfunctional forms. Advanced forming processes introduced. The formulation of clay bodies, glazes and their preparation, testing, and application. Kiln loading and firing practices. Two two-hour sessions per week. Prerequisite: Art 130 or consent of instructor. Fee: $150.

260 Intermediate Sculpture
x, 3 Acuff

This course builds upon previous foundational experience with sculptural materials and design, placing greater emphasis on the ideas that shape the way objects and spaces are made, interpreted and valued. Exploration into the non-traditional formats of installation, performance, video, collaboration and social practice further situates student work within the landscape of contemporary sculptural practice. Prerequisite: Art 160 or consent of instructor. Fee: $150.

267 Intermediate Painting
3, 3 Martinez

Designed to follow Beginning Painting for students to develop further experience in painting. Painting techniques in oil paint, and oil mediums. The course continues to develop skills from beginning painting, and introduces students to development of personal style and imagery. Students are encouraged to engage with an awareness of historical and contemporary approaches to painting. Group critiques and discussions involve articulation of terms and ideas. Prerequisite: Art 167 or consent of instructor. Fee: $120.

270 Intermediate Printmaking
3, x Pietrantoni

Intermediate Printmaking provides students with a deeper understanding of the processes, concepts, and issues that inform contemporary printmaking. Working with a variety of print methods, we consider how the print can be incorporated into a diverse studio practice. As the semester progresses, the class focuses on both technical and conceptual issues in print. Students will gain experience in the creative and expressive possibilities of printmaking and develop a personal vocabulary with the media. Prerequisite: Art 170 or consent of instructor. Fee: $150.

280 Intermediate New Genre
x, 3 Lincoln

This course builds and expands on themes and skills developed in the Beginning New Genres course. Topics covered may include online identity, web design, 3-D printing, game design, and installation art. In this interdisciplinary class emphasis is placed on personally and socially meaningful experimentation. Instruction includes theme-based discussions and readings in contemporary art, video screenings, demonstration of software and hardware, and a series of assigned arts-based problems. Prerequisite: Art 180 or consent of instructor. Fee: $150.

301, 302 Special Projects
2-4

Projects selected by studio art faculty for the advanced student to work in a group in a specific field or topic. Fee: required for Ceramics ($150), Painting ($120), Photography ($175), Printmaking ($150), or Sculpture ($150). Prerequisite: consent of instructor. Any current offerings follow.

315 Advanced Drawing
3, x Staff

Further development and exploration of drawing media, imaging, and concepts through the use of various traditional and nontraditional approaches. Students investigate and explore with individualized intent and directions. May be repeated for credit. Two two-hour studio sessions per week. Prerequisite: Art 215 or consent of instructor. Fee: $100.

321, 322 Advanced Independent Study
2-3, 2-3 Staff

Advanced-level independent study within the areas of printmaking, ceramics, drawing/painting, new genre art forms, photography, sculpture, or other studio art practices at the advanced level, under the supervision of one or more studio art faculty. Prerequisites: Art 15, and an intermediate course in the area that the independent study is proposed and consent of supervising instructor. Fee: required for Ceramics ($150), Painting ($120), Photography ($175), Printmaking ($150), or Sculpture ($150).

323 Advanced Photography
x, 3 Bloomquist

Traditional Wet Lab Photography — Alternative Processes. Images will be gathered using film, scanner, or digital camera. Large format negatives will be produced on acetate, and contact prints will be made on paper treated with light-sensitive materials. In addition to weekly assignments, students will participate in a group show of their works. Two two-hour sessions per week. Prerequisite: Art 223 or consent of instructor. Offered every other year. Fee: $175.

325 Advanced Digital Printing
3; not offered 2014-15

Fine Art Digital Printing will be further explored. Images will be gathered using cameras and scanners. Darkroom aspects of Photoshop will be used to manipulate the images so that fine art digital prints can be produced. Each student will create a portfolio of prints from a subject of their choice. Two two-hour sessions per week. Prerequisites: Art 225 or consent of instructor. Offered every other year. Fee: $175.

330 Advanced Ceramics
3, x Timm-Ballard

Further exploration and development through the use of clay as a medium. Contemporary issues in ceramics and the use of other media along with clay are introduced. May be repeated for credit. Two two-hour studio sessions per week. Prerequisite: Art 230 or consent of instructor. Fee: $150.

360 Advanced Sculpture
x, 3 Acuff

This course demands greater focus and personal initiative in the generation of work that resonates with contemporary sculptural materials, themes and ideas. Students should be prepared to tackle bigger technical and conceptual challenges, in service of the development of a maturing artistic vision and voice. Prerequisite: Art 260 or consent of instructor. Fee: $150.

367 Advanced Painting
3, 3 Martinez

Advanced Painting concentrates on the development of a personal direction and creating a cohesive series of work. Students are challenged to create work that maintains a broad awareness of historical, contemporary, and cultural issues. Cross-disciplinary directions are encouraged if appropriate to the student’s ideas, both in material use and/or content of work. Regular readings and group discussions are part of the course. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: Art 267. Fee: $120.

370 Advanced Printmaking
3, x Pietrantoni

This course builds upon the foundation developed in the Beginning and Intermediate courses and emphasizes an advanced technical and conceptual engagement with printmaking. Emphasis is placed on finding an individual studio direction through research, exploration of content, and ongoing critique. As the semester progress, students develop a personal vocabulary with the media and are encouraged to consider how the print can be incorporated into a diverse studio practice. Art 370 maybe be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: Art 270 or consent of instructor. Fee: $150.

380 Advanced New Genre
x, 3 Lincoln

This course continues the critical exploration of recent and emerging new genres in the practice of fine art. Through lecture, discussion, demonstration, and practice, students advance their familiarity with a range of contemporary formats including video art, installation, digital sound, the Internet, conceptual, and/or performance actions. Emphasis is placed on creating meaning in art through the use of one or more new genre formats. Instruction includes the demonstration of sound, image, and archiving software, theme-based discussions in contemporary art, and film screenings. Students independently complete and present at least one larger scale artwork in a new genre format. Prerequisite: Art 280 or consent of instructor. Fee: $150.

480 Senior Studio Seminar
3, x Martinez

Contemporary issues in visual art will be explored through readings, discussion, and critique of written and visual assignments. This course will emphasize preparation for the thesis exhibition and oral defense. It also will address strategies for furthering the creative process after the student leaves college. Two two-hour studio sessions per week. Prerequisite: Art History 229, Art 115, and an advanced-level class in the area of concentration. Fee: $100.

490 Thesis in Art Studio
x, 3 Timm-Ballard

Open only to senior studio art majors except those registered for Art 498. This course will meet twice a week during the spring semester (or final semester) of the senior year. Devoted to the preparation of a cohesive body of original work for the Senior Thesis Exhibition, a written artist statement, and an oral defense of the work will be required. Two two-hour studio sessions per week. Prerequisite: Art 480, Art 115, and an advanced-level course in the student’s area of concentration. Fee: $100.

498 Honors Thesis
x, 3 Staff

Designed to further independent investigation leading to the preparation of a written thesis and research project in the studio arts. Required of and limited to senior honors candidates in studio art. Prerequisite: admission to honors candidacy. Fee: matches fees associated with advanced class in area of concentration.