The visual arts as a major area of study offers students the opportunity to develop an understanding of artistic creativity through making art in a studio setting;a responsive eye and a sense of visual literacy; an understanding of the relationship between art and society; and an understanding of modern art concepts and contemporary trends as well as the major artistic epochs of the past.
A student who chooses art history as her or his concentration should complete the required art history courses in the major, and should take two courses from history and/or religion. A student should consult with her or his advisor regarding the program by the end of the sophomore year. Students who plan to pursue graduate study should gain a reading knowledge of French and German.
Students produce their own work and receive individualized instruction in painting, drawing, two and three-dimensional design, sculpture, photography, ceramics and other areas of visual expression. Graduating seniors exhibit their art in the String Room Gallery as the capstone to their academic work.
Students learn first-hand the traditions and history of the book through courses in printing, bookbinding, calligraphy, and other topics. Working with skilled instructors on campus and through internships at prestigious institutions, students are well-prepared to go on to graduate programs in book arts and conservation. The senior capstone course culminates in a show of the student's work and a gala reception.
Students will benefit from the experience of study in England, Germany, or Italy and should consult the study abroad programs. The visual arts major recommends that students majoring in visual arts (studio art or art history) go abroad before their senior year. The senior thesis must be accomplished on campus during both fall and spring semesters of the senior year.
The total number of courses required for the major is 15-18 (40-54 semester hours). At least six courses taken for the major must be at the 300-level or above.
Delve further into your creative goals or examine practical applications for your artistic knowledge and appreciation through an internship. Wells alumnae/i who are established leaders in their fields often provide internships opportunities for current students. The following is a sample of internships in the visual arts area held by Wells students in recent years:
Paint from a rooftop in Florence as you study Renaissance art at its roots. Wells makes it possible. Visual Arts majors can pursue programs around the world. Check out our off-campus study programs.
Visual Arts majors can enhance their work in the studio and classroom by participating in student life—especially cultural activities.