Studio Projects in Interdisciplinary Art: Material Gestures in a Shared Space

Fall 2019
Winter 2020
Spring 2020
Freshman - Sophomore
Class Size: 46
16 Credits per quarter
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This is an entry-level visual arts program emphasizing foundations of design and materials in 2D and 3D studio practices.  We will delve intensively into the development of studio skills in design, ceramics, sculpture, mixed media, life drawing and painting while exploring how these material gestures express content. In line with much contemporary art that uses multiple materials and approaches and incorporates studio practice with theory; the program will include art history; visual/cultural studies, including literature, aesthetics; and writing. As a working group, students will engage in an art practice that explores what it means to be in conversation with art history and the sociopolitical world, drawing encouragement and influence from each other as a community of artists.

The program is designed to support students interested in the visual arts, as well as those who are curious about visual literacy and want to experience using materials as an approach to inquiry and expression. No prior art experience is necessary, but enthusiasm, curiosity, and a strong work ethic are required. Students should be prepared to dedicate at least 40 hours per week to studio work and rigorous reading and writing on topics related to the concepts of 20th- and 21st-century art history and critical theory.  Central to this program is an understanding of the implications of image and object making in an image-abundant culture of digital and social media; making informed decisions about creative practice that is socially and materially sustainable; and how the politics of representation, identity, and community are inscribed in the images we make and view.

Fall quarter will provide students with foundational studio experience in design with drawing workshops and mixed media experimentation. In winter, students will work more specifically with the mediums of ceramics and painting. There will be visits to regional museums and we will attend the Art Lecture Series, which brings in artists from around the country to talk about the creative process. In the spring, students will continue to develop 2D and 3D studio practices and have the opportunity to apply their learning to individual projects, utilizing knowledge and skills gained over fall and winter. There will also be an opportunity to go to New York City for two weeks to visit artists' studios, attend talks, and draw from observation at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Students who do not to go to NY will have access to our dedicated studio and program structures that will continue on campus.

By the end of this program, students will understand how one engages with an art community to share support and inspiration, contemporary practices with materials, and how the artist’s work connects to critical issues. Students will begin to imagine how to situate their own projects in terms of the world around them. Students who fully engage in this program can expect to be prepared for intermediate studies in interdisciplinary visual arts.

Greener Foundations:  This program will incorporate Greener Foundations, a holistic course designed for first-time, first-year students. Faculty and staff collaborate to bring study skills, academic planning, health and wellness education, advising, and more into the classroom. More information at Greener Foundations


Fall 2019 Registration

Course Reference Numbers

Fr (16): 10118
So (16): 10119
(1 - 16): 10324
Winter 2020 Registration

It is preferred but not required that students entering in winter have the equivalent of one-quarter of college-level studio art and at least one quarter of college-level art history or critical theory. Students interested in joining the program are strongly encouraged to attend the Academic Fair, December 4, to discuss the program with faculty or contact the faculty by email; Evan Blackwell ( ), and Shaw Osha ( ).

Course Reference Numbers

Fr (16): 20043
So (16): 20044
Spring 2020 Registration

Signature Required

This program will accept new students with substantive background in the following areas: visual art/design, art history, art theory. Admittance will be based on a background of at least two quarters of college-level related experience and strength of spring quarter application. Interested students should contact faculty by email: Evan Blackwell ( ), and Shaw Osha ( ), to obtain application. Faculty will interview students at the Academic Fair (March 4, 2020). Students who cannot attend the Academic Fair should email their completed application to the faculty. Students who are accepted to the class will be notified by email.

Course Reference Numbers

Fr (16): 30010
So (16): 30011
Fr - So (1 - 16): 30420

Academic details

Preparatory For

the arts and humanities .

Maximum Enrollment
Class Standing

$190 in fall for an overnight field trip to Portland, museum entrance fees, and studio supplies. 


In Person or Remote
Hybrid (F)
Hybrid (W)
Remote (S)
Time Offered
Advertised Schedule

First spring class meeting : TBD

Schedule Evergreen link
see Schedule Evergreen for detailed schedule

First Meeting

SEM 2 A1107 - Workshop


Date Revision
2019-11-18 Winter required fee reduced to $85 (was $140)