Studio Art Requirements

Senior Studio Art show in WCMAThe studio division of the Art major has been structured to develop a critical understanding of making art in a variety of media through teaching technical skills as well as expanding meaning and deepening creative ideas. The courses are suited to those students wishing to major in art, as well as those who wish to include studio art and creativity as part of their liberal arts education.

The Studio Art major requires a minimum of nine courses:

  • ARTS 100 Drawing I 
  • ARTH elected course (preferably taken by the end of the junior year) 
  • A combination of at least three 100- and 200-level courses in three different media (ARTS 100 and tutorials do not satisfy this requirement) 
  • ARTS elected course 
  • ARTS 319 Junior Seminar 
  • Any two of the 300-level ARTS courses, OR one 300-level ARTS course and ARTS 418 Senior Seminar

Drawing I, ARTS 100 serves as an introduction to the basic drawing and design principles which establish a foundation for the development of visual expression. An Art History course provides part of the necessary background in the critical analysis of art. The 100- and 200-level ARTS courses provide opportunities to learn the elements of some of the principal visual arts media: for example, architecture, painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture, and video. These courses combine technical foundations in the medium with analysis of the interrelation of visual form and content. The 300- and 400-level courses place a greater emphasis on the application of appropriate visual skills and strategies to particular thematic concerns, and to the development of the student’s individual vision. All students taking ARTS 418 are required to exhibit in the spring of their senior year at the Williams College Museum of Art or other appropriate venues. Students who choose to take two 300-level classes do not exhibit at WCMA in the spring of the senior year.

A Studio Art major’s course choices might look like:

First year: Two studio courses at the 100- and 200-level in different media. (2-D, 3-D, photo, video or performance) and an Art History course. While there is only one Art History course required for the major, we encourage you to take advantage of the rich Art History offerings throughout your time at Williams. We encourage students to explore diverse media that they are unfamiliar with early on in their four years, as it provides a good base and allows for more flexibility later on. 

Second year: At least two 100- and 200-level courses that expand your experiences and deepen your knowledge and expertise. 

Third Year: Junior Seminar, a 200- or 300-level course or tutorial, possibly a second Art History course.

Fourth Year: One 300-level course, Senior Seminar and a variety of final courses chosen to support your individual interests.

For more information on requirements, refer to the Course Catalog.