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BA & BFA Studio Degrees
    Computer Imaging
    Figure Drawing
    Graphic Design
  BA Art History Degree
    Italian Renaissance
  Art Education
  Off-Campus Study
    New York Arts Program
    ASITAW Program

The educators and practicing artists of the OWU faculty create an environment that supports the development of a strong foundation in the liberal arts. Our department thrives in a university where diversity is encouraged. Students participate in programs and activities ranging from performing arts to community service to athletics. The pairing of the focused arts education with the liberal arts offers all our students a unique type of intellectual and cultural stimulation. We believe that this is a special asset for student artists and helps to encourage a more confident and personal artistic vision.

At Ohio Wesleyan, we have created an atmosphere in which learning and creativity work together. We have designed a rich and balanced program that provides the necessary structure as well as the freedom to grow and explore. The art curriculum provides students with opportunities for a highly concentrated education in studio art and art history. Students can elect to combine various media concentrations when creating their desired programs. We also offer an art education program with certification in grades K-12 for BFA candidates.

Studio Degrees   to top


We offer both the Bachelor of Arts (BA) and the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) as well as a combined — BA and BFA — degree. BFA students are those who are planning to be professional artists, art teachers, or graphic designers. They focus on studio art (ceramics, computer imaging, drawing, graphic design, metals, painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture), or art education with teaching certification. BA students take a lower concentration of courses in the arts and often combine their art studies with a second major. They choose from among the same curricular concentrations and meet the same standards of artistic and academic excellence as those who select the BFA route. All students at OWU can minor in studio art or art history.

All fine arts students are required to take a foundation core of courses consisting of 2D design, 3D design, drawing, and survey of Art History I and II. This series of courses provides the foundation for all studio art, art history, and art education majors. For each specialization there is a specific set of upper-level requirements. Most of our students combine different studio specializations (concentrations) to reflect their own interests. Typically at the advanced levels students are working on their own independent projects.

Students have access to our studios 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This free access to studio facilities is crucial in helping the students meet the high expectations of each course and rise to high levels of achievement.

Due to the quality of teaching and the access to excellent facilities, our studio majors do very will with entry into MFA graduate programs as well as entry into professional art and design jobs. Furthermore, we have an excellent record in placing our art education students in teaching positions.

Graduation Guidelines

Ceramics   to top


Ceramics is taught with two specific beginning approaches in alternating semesters. Beginning students start either with throwing or handbuilding techniques. Students are introduced to design, construction, glazing and firing of ceramics; the chemistry of glazes and simple geology of clay are taught every semester. More advanced students define and carry out their own individual exploration in a particular direction.

The ceramics facilities include a large central classroom surrounded with various satellite support spaces. All of the clay used in the studio is made in our clay mixing room. We have a separate glazing room and glaze chemistry and storage room, a damp room, and two indoor kiln rooms. These kiln rooms house a Bailey high-fire reduction gas kiln and three electric low-fire kilns. Outside in the ceramic yard we have four kilns: a high-fire reduction gas car kiln, a wood kiln, a soda kiln, and a Raku kiln.

Computer Imaging   to top


Emphasis is on creating color images for output on color ink jet printers and photo mechanical processes. Specific focus is made on hand-crafted works using pressure-sensitive tablets. Alternative input devices include transparency and reflective scanners and digital cameras. Advanced students are directed to find a personal statement based on formal and technical exploration of content of their choice. Advanced students also can do directed studies in digital photography and animation. They must acquire a thorough understanding of computer software and hardware prior to arranging a directed course.

The computer imaging facility is exclusively outfitted with the latest Apple Macintosh Mac Pro workstations and 24" iMac computers. The workstations have 23" and 30" monitors. All computers are appropriately set up with RAM and storage. All of our computers are equipped with Wacom Intuos tablets and are connected to our three data servers via a 100Mbps Ethernet network. We an Epson 1600 transparency and flatbed scanner, an Epson 1200 flatbed scanner, and several digital cameras. Output devices include an Epson 7500, 4000, 3800 and 2200 color ink jet printers with rip drivers, two HP color laser printers and a large format laser printer. We use the Adobe Creative Suite 3 Design Premium software and Apple software.

Drawing   to top


We offer four levels of drawing and four separate levels of figure drawing. We teach drawing as a means of developing visual perception. In beginning drawing, basic skills are acquired for depicting representational and nonrepresentational elements. In upper-level courses, students are introduced to more advanced approaches in the selection and use of materials and subject matter. Here the development of a personal aesthetic is emphasized.

Figure Drawing   to top


The live model is the main focus of Figure Drawing, with four different levels being offered. At the introductory level, students learn to apply various drawing concepts and materials to analyze and express the complexities of the human form, including basic anatomy. Intermediate and Advanced levels increasingly explore the formal and narrative potential of the figure through independent projects, with an emphasis on developing the individual's stylistic approach and expressive intentions.

Graphic Design   to top


Students are introduced to graphic design utilizing Adobe CS3 Premium software with an emphasis on typography and layout and the development of skills in the handling of formal design principles. Intermediate and advanced students work on much more complex projects in computer-enhanced design, animation, and Web design utilizing software such as Bridge, Photoshop Enhanced, Illustrator, InDesign, Flash, Dreamweaver, and Acrobat Professional. Graphic Design is taught in the same digital studio complex and utilizing the same software as Computer Imaging.

Metals   to top


Beginning students are introduced to design and fabrication of metals and non-conventional materials into body adornment, hollowware and/or small sculpture. The next level involves further exploration of forming techniques, surface embellishment, and fabrication methods. Casting processes are taught at the advanced levels. Advanced students are encouraged to develop a personal style while creating a body of work.

This is a fully equipped facility for hand fabricating and mechanical processes involved in jewelry making, hydraulic die forming, lost-wax casting, rubber mold making, stonesetting, patination coloring of refractory metals, Japanese and Korean surface treatments and laminations, etching, aluminum anodizing, and surface enameling. The primary classroom has work stations for eighteen students and all appropriate areas and equipment to support basic production work and brazing techniques. A separate fabrication, casting shop, and etching/finishing facility is located adjacent to the main classroom.

Painting   to top


In beginning painting, students are introduced to basic concepts of color mixing, paint application, composition, and the selection of subject matter. Various media are employed—primarily oil and acrylic—but also may include watercolor, collage, and mixed media. Students in the intermediate and advanced levels may explore both traditional and contemporary painting issues with an increasing emphasis on personal expressive content and stylistic cohesiveness.

The studio is set up with north-facing skylights and is amply equipped for most painting techniques including a series of semi-private advanced student alcoves, 24 easels with palette tables, power tools, hand tools, spray painting room, lockers, horizontal storage units, and vertical canvas storage facilities.

Photography   to top


For beginners, emphasis is on developing a thorough understanding of the 35 mm camera, its operations, and its application as a tool for self-expression. The basics of lighting, exposure, film processing, contact and projection printing, and image presentation are covered.

Study on the intermediate and advanced levels is designed to further the student's understanding of the theory and practice of photography as a fine art. Each student is encouraged to work with medium and large format cameras and experiment with a variety of hand-manipulated digital as well as non-silver print processes.

Photography facilities include a light studio, a lecture classroom, critique room, a beginning level "gang" darkroom that offers 11 enlarger stations, three advanced level semi-private darkrooms that are set up for medium and large format work, a large format darkroom, several development and film loading rooms, and a print mounting and matting room. All of the darkrooms are equipped with Hiretech custom, ventilated, gel-coat sinks and case work, and new Saunders enlargers.

Printmaking   to top


Students are introduced to printmaking through the study of intaglio, lithography, relief, and monoprinting techniques. Emphasis is on developing a basic understanding of the materials and techniques employed and to create personal statements. At the more advanced stages, students work in photomechanical processes. Advanced students are encouraged to take on more ambitious projects utilizing multiple printmaking techniques and to create a body of work with emphasis on development of a personal statement through form and process.

The print shop is set up to support large-scale and complex projects with an ample area for personal work on wood, copper, zinc, aluminum and mono plexiglas plates and lithographic stones. There are separate rooms for doing photomechanical processes, applying grounds, aquatinting plates, etching plates, processing plates, washing out silkscreens, and graining lithographic stones. Printing equipment includes a 40" x 72" Takach combination etching and lithography press, a 34" x 60" Takach etching press, two 34" x 60" Takach lithography presses with aluminum plate beds, and finally a Sturges 28"x 48" press for relief printmaking and various transfer methods; copper and zinc etching facilities for up to 24" x 36" plates; and a modest collection of lithographic stones. The print shop also houses a large area for students to work on ambitious projects, a small computer imaging lab, a plate and paper storage room, pexto plate sheer, print drying racks, matting equipment, and an ink mulling machine for making custom inks on site.

Sculpture   to top


Highlights of these facilities include an indoor bronze foundry and a exterior courtyard for iron casting. There are specialized areas for wax and plaster work and a full complement of power and non-power hand tools for fabrication and finishing work, blacksmithing furnace, gas brazing, tig welding, plasma cutting, and arc welding.

We have a separate wood sculpture facility that houses various heavy pieces of Delta and Rockwell equipment: a 24" thickness planer, a table saw, 2 radial arm saws, (one set up with dado blades,) a large band saw, scroll saw, plywood panel saw, 6" jointer, and a drill press. There is also a large variety of electrical hand tools, such as a circular saw, several routers, hand drills, sanders as well as non-power hand tools and clamps. Work is done on three large custom-made 4" oak top on steel I-beam woodworking benches.

Art History Degree   to top


We offer the B.A. Degree in Fine Arts with a concentration in art history, studying the art of the past in the context of its historical and cultural setting. We offer courses that cover many different periods and cultures such as Classical Art, Medieval Art, Italian Renaissance Art, Baroque Art, American Art, Modern Art, Contemporary Art, Islamic Art, and Asian Art. Courses often involve field trips to the Columbus Museum of Art, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Toledo Museum, the Cincinnati Museum of Art, the Chicago Art Institute, the Wexner Center in Columbus, and other regional galleries and exhibits.

All art history majors are required to complete a capstone project working one-on-one with a faculty member on an independent study project of their own choosing.

Our graduates in art history have gone on to jobs and graduate work in their chosen field. Some employers of recent graduates include: the National Museum of Women in the Arts (Washington, DC), the Guggenheim Museum (New York), and the Butler Institute of American Art (Youngstown, OH). Other recent graduates have gone on to graduate study at Rutgers University, Florida State University, the State University of New York at Stony Brook, and the University of Wisconsin.

Graduation Guidelines

American   to top


This course covers architecture, painting, sculpture, and other art forms of the United States with an emphasis on the period from 1776 to 1913. The course begins with the introduction of Thomas Jefferson as a "gentleman architect" and ends with the examination of the unprecedented manipulation of space and materials in the buildings designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. In between those extremes, the neo-classical sculpture of Hiram Powers is compared to the plaster parlor ornaments created by the skillful craftsman John Rogers. Other highlights include the landscape paintings of Thomas Cole, the work of abstract expressionist painter Jackson Pollock, and the pivotal influence of Alfred Stieglitz as both a photographic artist and as a champion of European Modernism.

Asian   to top


A survey of the art of India, China and Japan, with emphasis on major traditions and their religious and philosophical context. The course covers such exciting sites as the early Buddhist cave paintings at Ajanta, examines the development of Chinese scroll paintings, the impact of Zen and the "Way of Tea" on Japanese architectural and artistic aesthetics and the art of the multiple cultures of South Asia.

Baroque   to top


Art of the Baroque and Rococo movements (17th to early 18th century) in Italy, Spain, Flanders, Holland, France and England. The course considers the impact of the Reformation and Counter Reformation and the role of patronage on the development of art and architecture—from the grandeur of Baroque churches in papal Rome to the raucous or tranquil scenes of daily life and symbol-rich still lifes of prosperous Calvinist Holland and the playful and sexually charged art of the Rococo salons of Paris.

Classical   to top


Art of the Aegean, Greece, Etruria and Rome from the Neolithic to late antiquity (2500 BCE to 330 CE). This course explores the art of the ancient Mediterranean world: architecture, sculpture, mural painting, ceramics, and metalwork in its cultural and social contexts. Examples include works such as the Minoan Bronze Age complex at Knossos, the construction and sculpture of the Parthenon in classical Athens, the dancers and feasters on the walls of Etruscan tombs, and the transformations of Roman art from the Republic through to the late Empire.

Contemporary   to top


This course covers significant developments in the visual arts from 1945 to the present. The course begins with the abstract expressionism of the late '40s and then considers the contentious critical analysis of Greenberg and Rosenberg. Michael Fried's tirade expresses the challenging and pivotal importance of minimalism. Next we look at Raushenberg, Johns, and Cage, who appropriate images from the everyday world and restate the issues of semiotics and meaning in art. The investigation of artists in the '70s, '80s, and '90s such as Warhol, Hesse, Serra, Lin, Beuys, Acconci, Schneeman, Sherman, Kruger, Ukeles, Kelly, Jimenez, Durham, and Hammonds reveal the complexity and diversity of trends in the late 20th Century.

Islamic   to top


An exploration of the development of early Islamic art and architecture in light of the aesthetics and functional needs of Islam as faith and cultural empire. The impact of Islam as a unifying force will be contrasted with the artistic regionalism of cultures wholly or partially subsumed within Islam: Arabic, Persian, Anatolian, Mughal Indian, medieval Spanish, and sub-Saharan African.

Italian Renaissance   to top


Art of Renaissance Italy from the ProtoRenaissance to Mannerism (14th to the 16th century). This course starts with 14th-century transformations of late medieval art. Then it follows 15th-century developments in such urban centers as Florence, Mantua, Urbino, and Rome. Finally it explores the High Renaissance art of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, and Titian and considers the emergence of the new creative energies of Mannerism.

Medieval   to top


Art of the medieval world from the conversion of the Roman emperor Constantine in 312 CE to the Late Gothic era (14th-15th centuries).This course explores the development of a new Christian language of visual forms, the continuities and transformations of the artistic traditions of classical antiquity in the art of the Middle Ages, the interaction of these traditions with the artistic practices of nonclassical cultures of northern Europe, and the emergence of new architectural and artistic forms including the illuminated manuscript, the Norman castle, and the Gothic cathedral.

Modern   to top


This course covers art and architecture from impressionism to the present, with an emphasis on major developments in 20th Century painting and sculpture. It is a course that presents and explains the reasons for the revolutionary changes that shaped the way we see and understand the art of our time. We examine why and how artists looked beyond the realistic appearance of the world around them and instead sought to understand and present what they felt was an even more realistic abstract, expressive reality.

Art Education   to top

The Art Education program is designed for students pursuing K-12 certification. This program prepares students for primary and secondary art, as well as art supervisory positions. Students enroll as BFA majors with additional course work in the education department and supervision for student teaching coordinated with both art and education professors. The combination of the BFA’s extensive and thorough grounding in studio art and art history mixed with the excellent curriculum and supervision in the education department makes our graduates unusually qualified and very competitive for teaching positions.

Graduation Guidelines

Off-Campus Study   to top


Ohio Wesleyan offers two prominent off-campus programs. The New York Arts Program is easily our most exciting. Students enrolled in this program spend a semester in Manhattan working with art professionals. Every other summer, we also offer the ASITAW photography program. This intensive nine-week offering occurs at two locations in New Mexico and Montana with extensive "photo ops" in between.

Many of our students take a semester to study overseas; the most popular destination at the moment is Italy, where students have the opportunity to study the art of both ancient Rome and Renaissance Florence.

New York Arts Program   to top


Young artists do not learn in a vacuum. We encourage our students to participate in the New York Arts Program. The program's executive director, Linda Earle, has over 30 years' experience in the visual, performing, and media arts, including her tenure as executive director of program for the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and, previously, as the senior program director for the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA). Earle visits Ohio Wesleyan frequently to discuss the program with students.

Students typically enroll in this internship program for a semester during their junior or senior year. OWU owns a four-story living unit in mid-town Manhattan which is the base of operations for this GLCA program.

During the semester in New York, students have the opportunity to work with professional visual and performing artists, graphic designers, Web site designers, animators, and fashion designers. As an alternative, students can work with curators at the major art museums or with various professionals in the gallery world and art marketplace.

For further information, please visit the New York Arts Program Web site.

ASITAW Program   to top


The ASITAW progam (Art Studies in the American West), is a nine-week suumer school program based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Bozeman, Montana. The program is designed for individuals interested in an intensive study of photography and the art, artifacts, and architecture of the American West. While formal instruction in studio photography and photographic history occurs in Santa Fe and Bozeman, supplemental learning occurs as the participants travel throughout the Rocky Mountains, western desert, and canyon regions. Visits to museums, commercial galleries, artists' studios, national parks, and historic sites highlight each summer's acitivies.

Interested participants enroll in two separate but closely related courses. The first is a production-oriented studio course in black and white photography. This workshop-oriented course is designed to accommodate the technical needs and aesthetic aspirations of beginning, intermediate, and advanced level students. In the studio course, students will engage in imagery that explores three major themes: social landscape, natural landscape and personal landscape.

The second course is a broad-based lecture course in which images created by 19th- and 20th-century photographers working in the West will be studied in relation to the history, the lore and the other arts of the region. Beyond the study of works by well-known Anglo artists, particular attention is directed to the creative efforts of lesser-known Hispanic and Native American artists who have created so much of what is unique to this region.

We typically visit places such as Acoma Pueblo and Bandelier National Momument in New Mexico, hike in Canyon de Chelly National Monument in Arizona, see the cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado, tour remote areas of Canyonlands National Park in Utah, and spend days at Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons National Parks in Wyoming.

Participation is open to students from colleges and Universities throughout the United States. Contact: Justin Kronewetter.

Ohio Wesleyan University