The Foundations Area offers core courses in studio art and art history required by the Art Department’s degree programs. The selection of required courses varies between programs.
The Foundations classes aim to provide students with a solid introduction to design, drawing and art history. The students develop a repertoire of basic studio skills and build the vocabulary (visual and verbal) necessary to create, analyze and discuss artwork. The courses stress creative problem-solving and critical thinking and provide students with a base of experience for further studies in art and related disciplines.
ARTS 121 Two-Dimensional Design
A foundation course dealing with an analytical approach to the study of the elements of design: color, line, shape, value, and texture. (Formerly ART 122)
ARTS 122 Three-Dimensional Design
Basic study of three-dimensional structures and systems. (Formerly ART 131)
ARTS 123 Foundations Drawing I
Introduction to drawing fundamentals with an emphasis on object and spatial representation through descriptive and expressive means. Individual problems assigned to foster the development of competent observational skills in a variety of media and to expose students to basic terminology. Group discussions and critiques are frequent. (Formerly ART 123)
ARTS 126 Foundations Drawing II
Further exploration of drawing fundamentals with an emphasis on interpretive skills and composition. Extensive experimentation in basic drawing media, pictorial organization, and idea generation are stressed. Subjects such as the human figure are introduced and group discussions and critiques are frequent. (Formerly ART 124)
Prereq: ARTS 121 and ARTS 123
ARTS 127 Foundations Digital Media
This course is an introduction to the use of the computer as an art-making tool. Through readings, lectures, and discussions students will explore a wide range of approaches to digital media as well as its larger cultural implications. Exposure to contemporary artists who use the computer at some point in their process will give students insight into its applications across all media. (Formerly ART 330)
Prereq: ARTS 121, ARTS 122, and ARTS 123
ARTS 290 Studio Concepts
Studio Concepts is a foundations course that emphasizes ideas and conceptual thinking as the nexus of contemporary studio practice. The course is not discipline or media specific. Contemporary themes and “large ideas” will be presented to students, who will create artworks in response to those themes using a wide variety of media and strategies. Written work, both in preparation for and in response to the completed studio projects, will assist students in building a vocabulary for communicating about visual and material language and art-related concepts. As the final studio experience within the foundations group of courses, Studio Concepts is designed to prepare students for the more rigorous conceptual thinking and self-directed work required by upper-level studio classes.
Prereq: ARTS 121, ARTS 122, and ARTS 123. Concurrent Pre-reqs: ARTS 126, ARTS 127, ARTH 165
ARTH 165 Postmodern and Contemporary Art
This course, an introduction to the major trends and movements in recent art, is designed to help students learn and think critically about prevalent attitudes and theories about contemporary visual culture as well as to recognize the increasingly vital role played by the mass media and technology in the creation and dissemination of art. New media, such as video and digital art, and innovative forms of visual expression, such as conceptual and environmental art, will be investigated. Art will be examined as a response to current social, cultural, political and gender issues as will the reasons why artists make the shift from modernist to post-modernist strategies for making their work.