Studio Art

Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art

The Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art (with concentrations) focuses on the study of art, design, and art history in the context of a broader program of general study offered by the diverse research and teaching activities across the University of Illinois, Urbana/Champaign campus. It differs from the Bachelor of Fine Arts in that it offers students rigorous education in studio art while permitting them time to pursue studies in other areas, with a significant part of the educational experience occurring in areas outside the studio. Students choose from courses that will lead to concentrations in Drawing, Painting, Sculpture, Printmaking, New Media, or (general) Studio Art. These options permit students to experience a broad range of media practices or to focus on media-specific credits. Concentrations will be noted on the student’s degree, indicating a level of expertise in a particular sub-discipline that will be useful in the pursuit of advanced study or in employment opportunities where particular material skills are needed.

Foundation courses for the BA in Studio Art introduce basic materials and conceptual approaches to making art, using traditional media including drawing and painting, printmaking, clay, plaster, wood and metal, to code, digital imaging, interactive media, and time-based applications. By incorporating new and traditional strategies and technologies students will understand visual organization and communication in 2D (artworks in two dimensions, such as drawing, painting or printmaking), 3D (artworks in three dimensions, such as sculpture and installation), and 4D (artworks of a time-based nature, such as,video and performance art).

The advanced BA Studio Art student can look forward to a changing menu of courses on a variety of topics, taught by a diverse faculty with expertise in a wide variety of conceptual, material and technical strategies for making art. The BA Studio Art’s curriculum offerings are designed to reflect an increasingly dynamic culture and provide students with experiences and skills that promote adaptability after graduation.

BA Studio Art students are provided with individual studio spaces housed in a communal studio building, where they pursue a self-selected studio practice. The communal studio configuration provides the geography for a strong, vibrant community of student-artists working together as they establish their focus and participate in exhibitions, performances, and critiques.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art at the University of Illinois offers students unprecedented flexibility in determining their own courses and topics of study while engaging in a diverse, innovative, research-oriented curriculum. In response to a rapidly changing world in which artists and designers are constantly presented with new tools, platforms, topics, strategies and venues for exhibition, publication, performance and other types of cultural work, the BFA in Studio Art prepares students for the workplaces of the future. This degree is designed to equip graduates with the skills necessary to not only create artwork, but to communicate, think critically and creatively, and gain experience in a broad range of topics that will prepare them as innovative artists and as global citizens. Students will navigate a dynamic curriculum that is responsive to current trends in art, culture and creativity. It encourages new, interdisciplinary initiatives and fosters collaboration and research at the undergraduate level within the context of a premier research university.

Foundation courses for the BFA in Studio Art introduce basic material and conceptual approaches to art-making, using media from traditional disciplines including drawing and painting, printmaking, clay, plaster, wood and metal, to code, digital imaging, interactive media, and time-based applications. By incorporating new and traditional strategies and technologies students will understand visual organization and communication in 2D (artworks in two dimensions, such as drawing, painting or printmaking), 3D (artworks in three dimensions, such as sculpture and installation), and 4D (artworks of a time-based nature, such as, video and performance art).

At the intermediate and advanced levels, curriculum offerings are designed to reflect an increasingly dynamic culture, and to provide students with experiences and skills that will enhance their adaptability. A changing menu of courses on a variety of topics is taught by a faculty with expertise in a wide variety of conceptual, material and technical strategies for making art. BFA Studio Art students are provided individual studio spaces, where they develop a selfdirected practice, housed in a communal studio building. The studio configuration provides the stage for a strong, vibrant community of student-artists working together as they establish their interests and participate in exhibitions, performances, and critiques. The Bachelor of Fine Arts experience culminates in two capstone courses, in which students will determine a unique project developed from their entire educational experience. From these courses, the BFA Studio Art student will develop a thesis paper to document and create a narrative of their research activities and artistic projects as well as demonstrate their ability to clearly articulate the themes, concepts and position of their work in the context of the contemporary art world. A finished portfolio of visual work will demonstrate their material, formal, technical and expressive abilities.

BFA Studio Art graduates will enter professional lives as artists at a time when the boundaries between art and other fields are vanishing. Creative individuals with broad and versatile material, technical and intellectual skills will be in demand within expanding diverse practices that comprise contemporary art and society.