Lower Division Courses

Art 8 : Introduction to Visual Thinking

This course will explore how we observe and interpret our visual world. We will examine material from a wide range of sources, focusing on the social, political, and cultural connections, as well as the conceptual base and formal properties that comprise a particular visual/sensory experience. Two ongoing concerns will be the exploration of how art and life intersect, and how our perceptions of what constitute the “high” and “low” in collective culture establish our beliefs about art. The course requires the completion of three projects that stress the visual, intellectual and intuitive aspects of art making.

Art 12 : The Language of Drawing

Six hours of instructional studio and three hours of open studio per week. A study of drawing as a tool for articulating what the eyes, hand, and mind discover and investigate when coordinated. Some sessions will be devoted to drawing the human figure.


Art 13 : The Language of Painting

***Please note that there are TWO sections of this course***

Art 13 is an entry-level painting course designed to familiarize students with the materials, technical approaches, and processes of painting. Through a series of exercises, assignments, and visual presentations, we will investigate color interaction, contextual relationships, conceptual and compositional strategies, and the relationship between (subject, content, meaning) and process. Twentieth century painting history and theory will be referenced throughout our time together.

Consistent attendance is an important factor for this class to be a success. There will be a roster sheet for you to sign each day when you arrive. More than two absences will affect your final grade by one half. Two more absences will drop you another half.

Art 14 : The Language of Sculpture – Mixed Media

This course is the study of the interaction between physical form and space. We will focus on building a strong conceptual foundation while developing the practical studio skills needed to translate your ideas into three dimensions. Shop practices will include hand, machine, and computer-aided fabrications. Field trips and illustrated talks will help acquaint students with the ideas sculptors have explored through history and in contemporary sculptural practices.

Art 15 : The Language of Sculpture: Ceramics

This class will investigate the potential of ceramics as sculpture.  Both traditional and experimental approaches to ceramics will be explored as a way to develop our technical skills and expand our conceptual approaches.  Field trips and illustrated talks will examine the ideas that have engaged ceramic sculptors in many traditions and the processes that they have used to expand them. Lectures and demonstrations introduce students to techniques and varied applications.

Art 16 : Introduction to Printmaking – Relief and Intaglio

This course examines and explores various print disciplines. Students study and create traditional forms of fine art printmaking including woodcut, lithography, intaglio, and screenprinting as well as newer approaches which include transfer and digital printmaking. This course is a prerequisite for upper division print courses. Lectures and demonstrations introduce students to techniques and varied applications.

Art 26 : Introduction, Digital Moving Image

This course provides students with the technological and conceptual groundwork for advanced courses in video art and film making including the use of digital cameras, sound recording, basic lighting techniques, digital editing, compression, and online dissemination. As we work to understand what makes compelling moving images that elicit powerful intellectual and emotional responses, the teaching goals include mastering the basic elements of video making: duration, composition, light, color, relationships between sound and image, as well as creative approaches to editing such as dramatic continuity and montage. The course also explores the range of techniques and languages of creative video making from traditional story genres to more contemporary experimental forms, and is based on online tools for production, dissemination, and commentary. The course consists of a weekly lecture including screenings, discussion, and meetings with visual artists, and a lab section. The lab is a production workshop in which students receive hands-on instruction and produce a series of short exercises and a final project.

Upper Division Courses

Art 102 : Approaches to Painting

Often artists respond to limitations, whether self-imposed or life-imposed by lack of time, space or budget. But limitations are not always restrictions. Finding creative responses to limitations or boundaries can lead to unsuspected solutions. Many painters use specific limitations that propel their work into unexpected territories through their process, their materials or by finding ways of working that manifest as a result of an environmental or other constraint.

During this course, students will achieve the maximum impact within limited means. Through in-class and more in-depth projects, limitation exercises, and technical painting workshops, students will explore strategies that involve process, collaboration and project-based painting using limitation as a source of propulsion in their work. Emphasis will be placed on focusing one’s practice, as well as honing the skills needed to realize projects.

Students will study artists who utilize specialized processes, boundaries and strategies to guide and develop their work. The class will be supplemented by field trips and readings.

Course may be repeated for credit. Six hours of instructional studio and three hours open studio per week. Inquiry into concepts of order, process, and content as related to human experience. While faculty contact with students is highly individualized, the course involves group critiques and lectures as well as assigned field trips. Prerequisites 10, 12, and 14 or equivalents.

Art 119 : Global Perspectives in Contemporary Art

This course is designed to explore a range of contemporary art movements around the globe, through a closer look at their central ideas, artists, and artworks, as well as the preconditions and broader social context in which the work is being produced. Topics covered will range from the emergence of localized avant-garde movements in Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America to the implicit globalism of the international biennial circuit.

Art 120 : Advanced Projects: Print Intaglio

Six hours of lecture and three hours of studio per week. The process of Intaglio will be explored in a variety of image producing techniques. Hand drawn, photographic, and digitally manipulated images are combined to produce multiple works of limited edition fine art prints. Image content and development is examined through drawings, studies, slide lectures, group critiques, and direct assistance. Each student is required to attend all class periods and participate in group discussions and critique. It is the responsibility of the student to maintain a portfolio of all works executed during the semester and to turn in all assignments on time. The grade is determined by attendance, completion of projects and participation in critiques. Personal improvement will also be taken into account.

Prerequisites: Open to upper division art majors or by consent of instructor.
Credit option: Course may be repeated for credit.

Art 132 : Approaches to Sculpture: Ceramics

An opportunity to learn the many ways of shaping and giving form to wet clay, then making it permanent by firing it. Illustrated talks will examine the ideas that have engaged ceramic sculptors in many traditions and the processes that they have used to expand them. Lectures and demonstrations introduce students to techniques and varied applications.

Art 160 : Ancient Pigments and Contemporary Drawing Practices

This is an advanced studio drawing course that compares and contrasts traditional Asian and European pigments, surfaces, and images with contemporary strategies, sources, and methods.  Students will use various traditional hand-made pigments, binders, papers, and drawing materials to explore cultural developments and representations of space, time, and objects. A major course outcome is to create hybrid, diverse content that combines contemporary images and narratives with traditional historic sources. The course provides lectures, demonstrations and studio research methodologies.

Art 163 : Social Practice

Six hours of lecture and two hours of discussion per week. Social Practice broadly refers to work produced through various forms of direct engagement with a site, social system or collaborator. Interdisciplinary in nature, such work often takes the form of guerilla interventions, performance, institutional critique, community based public art and political activity, all sharing the premise that art created in the public sphere can help alter public perception and work toward social transformation.

Art 164 : Art & Meditation

Four hours of lecture per week. Prerequisites: Completion of all lower division requirements for the major. Meditation is arguably the most ancient, powerful, and yet simple spiritual practice in the world. It is known in various forms in nearly all times and cultures, and plays a part in every religious tradition. We will examine how meditation can affect your art both in terms of practice and content. The class will be structured with slide presentations, museum visits, discussion of reading, and reviews of art work. Art from various contemplative traditions will be examined.

Art 171 : Digital Video: The Architecture of Time

What does it mean to “begin” video?

There are reportedly 100 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute, added to a flood of footage already in torrent. Add to that all the other video sites online, the duration of every new TV show and the thousands of movies released every year, plus more than a century’s worth of the older stuff, and we are lost in an ocean of moving images. It’s a wonder we haven’t drowned.

Maybe the question should: what does it mean to continue video?

Six hours of instructional studio and three hours of open studio per week. This hands-on studio course is designed to introduce students to the foundation-level skills and concepts used in digital video production. In the course of mastering the basics of optics, sound recording, and editing, students will find creative video responses to formal assignments that explore such questions of scale, duration, narrative, and the use of video as a component in a larger work. In an effort to find alternatives to conventional  models and expand our experience of the medium, the student will experiment with unorthodox image capturing devices like GoPros and digital scanners, and with unusual approaches to screening, such as installations and non-standard monitors.

Prerequisite: Art 23AC

Art 171 : Beginning Digital Video

Nine hours of studio per week. Course may be repeated with consent of instructor. This course will cover a range of digital media and practices, with a view towards exploring current and future possibilities for photography. Inclusive of multiple approaches to scale, execution, and technique, the course enables students to examine and push the limits of photographic practices. This course will help students advance their digital shooting and Photoshop skills from a beginning to a more advanced level, and will cover the workflow of digital photography: camera usage, scanning, image editing, management, and printing.


Art 173 : Electro-Crafting

Six hours of lecture and three hours of studio per week. Course may be repeated for credit.
This is a studio class designed to introduce artists to the medium of sound. Students will learn the basic skills necessary to work with audio, including microphones, digital recording, editing and processing, speaker and installation design, and circuit-bending. In addition, students will learn about the history of sound art and the ways in which visual art and experimental sound practice inform and expand upon each other.

Art 184 : Junior Seminar: Meaning and Making

This immersive studio/seminar class focuses on contemporary models of art making, exposing students to current issues in the art world, and fostering interdisciplinary models of thinking and making. Through field trips to museums, galleries, and alternative art spaces, as well as studio visits with local contemporary artists, students will be able to situate their own projects within the larger sphere of contemporary art. Language and writing skills around artist statements, critical readings, and the critique process will be emphasized to understand how research methods give meaning in a studio practice. Presentation of a final studio project asks students to examine their place within a contemporary art dialogue.

Art 185 : Senior Projects, sections 001/002

***Please note that there are TWO sections of this class, K185/001 AND K185/002**

Three hours of lecture and three hours of studio critique per week. This course provides students with a foundation for understanding their work within a cross-disciplinary critical context. Through class and individual critique, readings, guest artists, and field trips, students will explore the practical and conceptual components of their own media and practice within a broader discussion of artistic production. In addition to this focused attention on the critique process, the class with address the ongoing needs of supporting one’s work within a community of artists, arts professionals, and arts organizations. Each student will work towards developing the most effective tools for communicating their work to these broader audiences using strategies that are appropriate/effective for their ideas, media, and audience.

Prerequisites: Senior level students only.

Graduate Courses

Art 301 : The Teaching of Art: Practice

The 301 Pedagogy Seminar is a preparation for GSI’s and is aligned directly with the teaching of Art 8: Introduction to Visual Thinking. Within our pre-semester pedagogy meetings, each graduate student develops a syllabus with emphasis on teaching philosophy, course content, approach to grading, attendance policy, and critique approach and style. Graduate students develop lesson plans and relational formal exercises for each of the course’s three main projects. Instructors receive the Art 8 Pedagogy manual, which contains twenty years of GSI’s syllabi and other helpful information. During our weekly semester pedagogy meetings, the graduate students and I discuss the pertinent issues of their current classroom dynamics.


Consent of instructor.