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Studio Art

Willamette’s Department of Art teaches the practice of fine art-making, of mastering technique and harnessing intellect to create visual artwork. Students work in experimental and traditional media drawing upon the breadth of Willamette’s liberal arts education.

By creating, showing and critically analyzing work, students viscerally experience art culture, while learning to use the language of contemporary art and preparing to participate as makers in a complex visual world.

The study of art

Art majors express their aesthetic, personal and social ideas through a wide variety of media. Studio courses are lab-based and encourage active engagement with faculty and peers. Areas of study include drawing, painting, printmaking, sculpture, photography and video. All are fine-art focused.

Students initially explore broadly, later focusing on an area of interest. Opportunities for learning beyond the classroom include professional and student art exhibitions, internships, work-study jobs and collaborative summer projects with faculty. The senior thesis is a self-defined creative project, guided by a faculty mentor, culminating in the Senior Art Exhibition at the university’s Hallie Ford Museum of Art.

Beyond the major

The department offers a minor in art as well as many courses that satisfy Willamette’s general education requirements. Faculty participate in interdisciplinary programs including Cinema Studies and Arts, Technology & Multimedia. The department fosters art awareness on campus through student exhibitions, the student art club and collaborations with Willamette’s Hallie Ford Museum of Art.

Art students develop skills in creative problem-solving, mastery of techniques, complex visual analysis and clarity and sophistication of visual communication.

Preparing our students for many varied careers including:

  • Practicing studio artist
  • Teaching
  • Exhibition design for fine art museums and galleries
  • Curatorial work and gallery management
  • New media & Communication