Facilities and Areas of Study
The Art Department is comprised of a wide range of studio areas, in 3 basic locations within 2 major buildings on campus. The Fine Arts Building is home to the Art Department office (Room 107 on the first floor), the Fine Arts Gallery, faculty offices, and over 7 studio areas within the Art Program. Located in the University Center, across from the food court "breezeway," you will find 4 additional art studios and faculty offices. The University Center (South) houses Interior Design, Computer Graphics/Design, Art History and several faculty offices as well.
Areas of Study
A comprehensive base in Foundations promotes an understanding and application of the basic elements of design, creative and analytical thinking, and problem solving, all of which are essential to pursuing a program in the visual arts. By learning to make meaningful connections between art and design, students are able to formulate informed decisions regarding their educational experience in the Art Department.
The Art Education program leads to a BFA degree and certification to teach in the public school system. Service forms a large component of the degree program, with students participating in professional activities, local, state, and national conferences, workshops, and research. Additionally, the program provides the experience of working directly with P-12 teachers and students in the classroom. Opportunities also exist for membership in the VSU chapter of the National Art Education Association (NAEA) and its state-based arm, the Georgia Art Education Association (GAEA). During the course of the degree program students not only learn about art, but also the art of becoming a professional educator, with outstanding opportunities for employment as a result.
Individuals seeking instruction in Ceramics are exposed to a variety of methods and concepts, such as coil, pinch, slab construction, extruding, and wheel throwing techniques in a traditional studio environment. Emphasis is placed on the creation of both functional and sculptural forms which employ a wide range of materials including stoneware and porcelain, with an exploration of techniques such as electric/oxidation, raku, soda firing, and high fire reduction. Advanced ceramics students gain exposure to methods and concepts which include plaster mold making, multiples, sets, installation, and digital transfers.
The Art History section offers students courses covering periods from Prehistoric through Contemporary, including classes on aesthetics and art criticism. Additionally, special offerings courses familiarize students with a diverse range of arts traditions, from African American and Native American to the arts of Latin American peoples. Critical thinking, written communication, and the role and function of the arts in a holistic context as they relate to global culture are emphasized. Students may also pursue directed studies with an emphasis on research and art historical methodology.
Graphic Design offers instruction through project based assignments that introduce students to the many facets of the design field, and provides practical experience in the applications of typography, layout, illustration, web design, and animation. The Graphic Design section has a state of the art Macintosh lab with twenty networked computers and large format printers for the creation of high quality comprehensives. Not only are students introduced to the field of Graphic Design, but they are also provided the opportunity for individual exploration through advanced courses. The advanced courses focus on the creation of quality works comprising a professional portfolio which facilitates entry into the job market.
State of the art computer graphics labs provide students interested in Animation exposure to this facet of the arts, with an advanced course focusing solely on computer animation. Utilizing Lightwave 3D©, students are grounded in the production of high quality animation. Each student produces a DVD portfolio comprised of personal animation projects as well as traditional studio art experience. This lab is shared with the photography courses and contains imaging software to support both areas.
Interior Design is a four year program leading to a BFA in Interior Design. The program is structured around standards for professionalism, and incorporates aspects that focus on the creation of sustainable, safe, and healthy environments that enhance the quality of life. Courses also emphasize design fundamentals, design history, knowledge of business principles, and building codes and regulations. Students develop communications skills through construction documents, color renderings, and oral presentations. The curriculum provides students with the necessary skills to effectively plan for both residential and commercial interior spaces, with electives that enrich and encourage individual creativity.
Jewelry / Metalsmithing
In the Jewelry/ Metalsmithing area students learn metal fabrication and construction methods used to create jewelry and small-scale sculpture. Students are encouraged to think creatively, explore alternative materials, and work across disciplines and media. Metalsmithing is a medium rich with history and tradition, where artists have the opportunity to create meaningful, lasting objects of adornment and art.
Painting instruction in the Art Department includes both perceptually based study as well as more conceptual and experimental approaches to the medium. Students work with oils, acrylics, watercolors, encaustics, and mixed media. Introduction to the fundamental concepts of painting and materials is emphasized in introductory courses, while courses at all levels are designed to foster knowledge of the historical and theoretical background of painting. Upper division students are encouraged to explore the development of individual style and personal vision, preparing them for continued growth and excellence in a professional context.
Photography provides a wide based experience in the visual arts with course offerings satisfying requirements for electives in Art Department degree programs and minors offered through a number of University departments. Instruction includes exposure to techniques incorporating black and white wet media processes as well as digital imaging. Students learn the fundamentals of shooting, presentation (matting and dry mounting), and analytical assessment of photographic works in a professional yet intimate studio setting.
Printmaking provides students with experience in another traditional studio area. The Art Department’s printmaking section provides instruction in intaglio, lithography, and screen printing. The facilities include two etching presses, one lithographic press, and one combination press. Introductory courses expose students to a variety of printmaking techniques, while advanced courses provide opportunities for individual exploration and development in selected media. All levels of instruction emphasize safe studio practices and use of less toxic printmaking techniques.
For students interested in sculptural arts, the Sculpture area offers instruction in a variety of media and techniques, including subtractive sculptural processes in stone and wood, as well as bronze and aluminum casting. Students gain experience in three dimensional design, beginning and advanced sculpture, and workshops focusing on advanced techniques. Facilities include a large and well equipped tool room housing both hand and power tools, pneumatic equipment, welding facilities, kilns, a nineteen foot saw mill, work tables and storage. The sculpture studio is located adjacent to a well equipped wood shop.
Icon designs by: Laura Aquadro - BFA graduate fall 2008