The Art Major at Earlham College is unusual because it emphasizes both contemporary craft media, such as ceramics, metalsmithing and fiber art, and more traditional media, such as drawing, painting and photography. The program also offers a range of options for work in art history and curatorial practices.
Earlham's Art Program requires no prerequisites for introductory courses, and both majors and non-majors are welcome. Each student majoring in Art chooses an area of focus, which consists of at least four courses in one of the following: ceramics, drawing, art history, metalsmithing, painting, photography and fibers. In addition to building competency in a focus, each student also takes Art: Context and Meaning — Part One (ART 115), Art: Context and Meaning — Part Two (ART 116) Making Art: Content, Form and Expression (ART 250), art history and a course in theatre, music or film.
All Art majors complete an intensive Senior Project in their area of focus, known as a Senior Capstone Experience. These projects, planned in consultation with department faculty, customarily lead to participation in a senior art exhibition in Leeds and Ronald Galleries or to the presentation of a research paper, the curation of an exhibition, completion of a community arts project or a similar public presentation appropriate to the project.
Each Art major completes an internship as well. The broad range of options for an internship includes work in a museum, apprenticing with an artist in a studio, participating in an intensive off-campus workshop, or working in a community arts program. Students are strongly encouraged to take advantage of the Great Lakes Colleges Association's New York Arts Program, which is an opportunity to spend a semester in New York City as an apprentice to an artist — some of them internationally known — or work as an intern in a major museum or gallery.
Among the resources available for art students are a large drawing and painting studio; a ceramics studio and a kiln building with a variety of electric, gas and wood-fired kilns; a darkroom; well-equipped metals and weaving studios; Leeds Gallery, an art exhibition space in Runyan Center; and Ronald Gallery in Lilly Library, which displays pieces from Earlham's Permanent Collection and other artists. Students in art classes often enjoy opportunities to participate in field trips to regional museums and sites. The Art Department also offers many intensive courses both on and off campus during May Term.
The studio art faculty members are all working artists who make and exhibit their own art in addition to teaching. Our art historian curates many exhibits from the College's Art Collection throughout the year in Ronald Gallery in Lilly Library.
Recent graduates from Earlham include students in a wide variety of excellent graduate programs. Many others have gone directly into the world of arts, working in their own creative studios or completing apprenticeships with professional artists. Two of our recent graduates received the Thomas J. Watson Foundation Fellowship. Each spent a year studying a subject of their own design.
Courses that fulfill
General Education Requirements:
- (A-AP) = Arts - Applied
- (A-TH) = Arts - Theoretical/Historical
- (A-AR) = Analytical - Abstract Reasoning
- (A-QR) = Analytical - Quantitative
- (D-D) = Diversity - Domestic
- (D-I) = Diversity - International
- (D-L) = Diversity - Language
- (ES) = Earlham Seminar
- (IE) = Immersive Experience
- (RCH) = Research
- (SI) = Scientific Inquiry
- (W) = Wellness
- (WI) = Writing Intensive
- (AY) = Offered in Alternative Year
*ART 115 ART: CONTEXT AND MEANING (3 credits)
Presents a thematic introduction of world architecture and art from prehistoric times to the Gothic period. Draws from a variety of academic disciplines and is designed to increase appreciation and understanding of art as related to its cultural context. Develops critical thinking and analytical skills in response to visual experience. (A-TH, D-I)
*ART 116 ART: CONTEXT AND MEANING — PART TWO (3 credits)
Presents an introduction of world architecture and art from the Renaissance to the present. Draws from a variety of academic disciplines and is designed to increase appreciation and understanding of art as it relates to its cultural context. Develops critical thinking and analytical skills in response to visual experience. Also listed as MUSE 116. (A-TH, D-I)
*ART 150 EARLHAM SEMINAR (4 credits)
For first-year students when offered. Topics vary. (ES)
*ART 200 CERAMICS I (4 credits)
An introduction to idea development and the forming of clay objects using ceramic processes and techniques that include hand building and wheel work along with surface treatment development and kiln firing methods. The course explores contemporary approaches to ceramics taught through a series of projects that incorporate research along with technical problems, readings, discussions, demonstrations and group critiques. (A-AP)
*ART 201 CERAMICS I WORKSHOP (4 credits)
Intensive three-week experience in ceramics, meeting all day each day. Intended as an introductory experience for those with little or no previous experience in ceramics. Not an exact equivalent for the full semester course, ART 200, but very similar in range and content. May Term. (A-AP)
*ART 202 ART CLOTH (4 credits)
An introduction to dyeing techniques such as batik and shibori, along with fabric piecing and embellishment. Studio work will include extensive experimentation with techniques as well as individual projects to develop both technical and aesthetic skills. Students also participate in lectures and discussions, and the course will be enriched by explorations into multicultural history and traditions of fabric art.
*ART 205 DRAWING I (4 credits)
Introduces students to the drawing process. Students work from observation and from imagination in creating works in a variety of media and methods that express an understanding of light, form and space. An excellent point of departure for those interested in painting. Students without any prior experience should take Drawing I before Painting I. (A-AP)
*ART 206 DRAWING I WORKSHOP (4 credits)
Intensive three-week introduction to the drawing process. Students work from observation and from imagination in creating works in a variety of media and methods that express an understanding of light, form and space. This course is an excellent point of departure for those interested in painting. Not an exact equivalent for the full semester course, ART 205, but similar in range and content. (A-AP)
*ART 210 HISTORY OF CRAFT (3 credits)
An examination of the history of craft from ancient times to the present. Explores indigenous craft and contemporary craft theory as related to the fine arts. (A-TH, D-I) (AY)
*ART 211 20TH CENTURY ART (3 credits)
A broad survey that begins by setting the groundwork for art of the 20th century with a discussion of the late 19th century artistic movements of Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, and the forces that lured artists away from the confines of academic painting. Explores the social and political forces, as well as the theoretical discourses that frame the major modern and post-modern art movements of the 20th century. Includes Fauvism, Cubism, Dada, Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art. (A-TH) (AY)
*ART 220 3D FABRICATION: ARTS AND TECHNOLOGY (4 credits)
This course will serve as an introduction to 3D creative design through traditional metalworking, computer-aided design and fabrication, and use of 3D printing and laser-cutting technology. This combination of traditional art making and computer modeling will help students experience the spectrum of creative options available in the 21st century. Students will advance their design vocabulary by gaining a deeper understanding of contemporary and traditional modes of creation. Course topics will not only include instruction on the operation of these tools, but on the creative process and the creation of art in general. Students will draw upon personal interests and experiences to integrate the appreciation and understanding of art into their lives. (A-AP)
*ART 225 PAINTING I (4 credits)
Introduction to oil painting covering all elements of the process from preparing a canvas to mixing paint. Includes contemporary and traditional genres with an emphasis placed personal research. Familiarity with drawing recommended. (A-AP)
*ART 235 PHOTOGRAPHY I (4 credits)
Students learn camera operation, experimenting with the ways different shutter speeds and apertures change a photograph; and how to develop film and print their own photographs in a chemical darkroom, while exploring the aesthetic results of their choices. Introduces the history of photography and fundamentals of art criticism. Explores the creative use of photography as a means of personal expression through a variety of projects. Many opportunities to address the class about your own photographs and to participate in lively group discussions on the work of others. (A-AP)
*ART 245 WEAVING I (4 credits)
An introduction to the structure and design of weaves, fiber dyeing, the production of woven items in a variety of fibers, and the history and traditions of weaving in both western and non-western cultures. Students design and weave a series of required and individual projects to develop both technical and aesthetic textile skills. Students also participate in lectures, discussions and research. (A-AP)
*ART 246 WEAVING I WORKSHOP (4 credits)
Intensive three-week introduction to the structure and design of weaves, fiber dyeing, the production of woven items in a variety of fibers, and the history and traditions of weaving in both western and non-western cultures. Students design and weave a series of required and individual projects to develop both technical and aesthetic textile skills. Students also participate in lectures, discussions and research. May Term. (A-AP)
ART 250 MAKING ART: CONTENT, FORM AND EXPRESSION (3 credits)
Introduction to the context and content of contemporary art making, formal elements of visual arts, including composition, color and design. Emphasis is placed on articulating ideas and critiquing works of art. Intended for Art majors who should take this class during the Sophomore year.
*ART 300 CERAMICS II (4 credits)
An intermediate level experience in ceramics that builds upon information and skills acquired in Ceramics I that requires students to continue to research contemporary approaches to ceramic processes while defining a personal vocabulary. Wheel work and/or hand forming techniques will be employed. Class activities include: readings, lectures, demonstrations, and discussions covering technical issues, loading and firing kilns, slip and glaze testing, researching contemporary craft, history and aesthetics of ceramics with frequent group critiques. Prerequisite: ART 200 or 201. (A-AP)
*ART 301, 302 CERAMICS II WORKSHOP (4 credits)
Intensive three-week experience in ceramics, meeting all day each day. Studio work for students at the intermediate or advanced level, pursuing largely individualized directions and research. May Term. Prerequisite: ART 200 or 201. May be repeated for credit. (A-AP)
*ART 303 ART CLOTH II (4 credits)
Students in this course will continue their exploration of cloth and fiber as a medium for artistic expression. Advanced work in dyeing, embellishment and piecing, as well as the making of 3-dimensional forms. Particular attention will be paid to the work of contemporary fiber artists. (A-TH)
*ART 305 DRAWING II (4 credits)
Life Drawing. Builds upon an understanding of light, form and space as students work to develop facility, through the study and expression of the human form. While the primary medium is charcoal, students are introduced to a variety of materials from which a portfolio is produced. Prerequisite: ART 205. (A-AP)
*ART 320 ADVANCED 3D FABRICATION/METALS (4 credits)
This course will provide advanced metalsmithing techniques as well as exploration of 3D computer fabrication. This course will help students continue exploring metal and jewelry as a media for their personal aesthetic expression. Students will learn continued development of craftsmanship, tool skill, conceptualization and design quality. Prerequisite: ART 220. (A-AP)
*ART 325 PAINTING II (4 credits)
Continues the exploration of the personal and historical nature of painting while investigating other media (e.g., encaustic), skills (e.g., hand-made stretchers and frames), community engagement, and preparing a cohesive body of work for a final critique. Prerequisite: ART 225. (A-AP)
*ART 333 HISTORY OF PHOTOGRAHY (3 credits)
Presents the history and interpretation of photography — as a scientific discovery and as an art form — from its beginnings in Western Europe in 1839 to present-day practice around the world. The course is designed to increase appreciation and understanding of photographic art as it relates to its cultural context and to develop critical thinking and analytical skills in response to visual experience. Attention will be given to geographic areas traditionally ignored in photography survey courses, such as the development of photography on the African and Asian continents. Prerequisite: ART 115, ART 116, ART 211, ART/JNLM 235 or the consent of the instructor.
*ART 335 PHOTOGRAPHY II (4 credits)
Advances skills gained in Photography I, with an increased emphasis on conceptual issues and aesthetic content, art theory and art criticism, and how one enters "the art world." One segment combines the best of the old and the new as students learn an historic, non-silver process by coating their own paper to make blue and white cyanotypes or Van Dyke browns with enlarged negatives created digitally with a scanner and Photoshop. Prerequisite: ART 235. (A-AP)
*ART 339 LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP (4 credits)
Intended for students who have learned the basics of operating a camera, developing their own black and white film and printing photographs, and who are ready to improve both their technical skills and the artistic content of their work. Intensive three-week exploration of one of the medium's oldest genres: the landscape. Course's primary activity is the taking of photographs out-of-doors and the review and discussion of them through group critiques. Explores examples of landscape photographs by various photographers and discusses the genre's progression from Pictorialism and the Photo Secessionist movement to Modernism and Postmodernism. May Term. Prerequisite: ART 235. (A-AP) (AY)
ART 340 ADVANCED PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP (4 credits)
Intended for students who have learned the basics of operating a camera, developing their own black and white film, and printing photographs, and who are ready to improve both their technical skills and the artistic content of their work. This intensive three-week workshop meets all day, every weekday, as students pursue variety of photographic projects in the studio, lab and outdoors. Individual work supplemented with lectures, slide shows and group critiques. May Term. Prerequisite: ART 235. (A-AP) (AY)
*ART 345 WEAVING II (4 credits)
Further experience in weaving, dyeing and textile design. Students pursue individual directions in their work. Includes readings, discussions, research on contemporary weaving, the role of the handmade in the 21st century, and frequent group critiques of student work. Prerequisite: ART 245. (A-AP)
*ART 382 ARTISTS IN FILM (3 credits)
Movies about artists are a genre like any other — there are some beautiful examples, some dreadful ones and many in between. This course will examine the ways in which artists are and have been pictured to the movie-going public. It will not be limited to visual artists only, and it will not necessarily be limited to biopics of actual artists — there are many good films about fictional artists. Also listed as FILM 382. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above, Earlham Seminar I. (A-TH)
ART 400 CERAMICS III (4 credits)
An advanced level studio experience intended for students who have completed at least two semesters of work in ceramics. It parallels Ceramics II, with students investigating pursuits at a more advanced level by researching and defining individualized studio projects. Prerequisite: ART 300.
ART 401 CERAMICS IV (4 credits)
Students advance skills gained in ART 400. Prerequisite: ART 400.
*ART 402 CURATORIAL PRACTICUM (3 credits)
The student will gain experience in many facets of museum practice including art handling, documentation, research, writing and presentation Working one-on-one with the Curator of the Earlham Art Collection, each student will select a group of works from the Collection to study. The course will culminate in an exhibit in Ronald Gallery or the Landrum Bolling Center. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor. Also listed as MUSE 402. (RCH)
ART 405 DRAWING III (4 credits)
Life Drawing. Builds upon an understanding of light, form and space as students work to develop facility through the study and expression of the human form. While the primary medium is charcoal, students are introduced to a variety of materials from which a portfolio is produced. Prerequisite: ART 305.
ART 406 DRAWING IV (4 credits)
Students advance skills gained in ART 405. Prerequisite: ART 405.
ART 420 METALS III (4 credits)
An advanced course in Metals for those wishing to explore more challenging problems in both historical and contemporary techniques. At this level, students are assigned projects in areas of their highest interest and promise. Prerequisite: ART 320.
ART 421 METALS IV (4 credits)
Students advance skills gained in ART 420. Prerequisite: ART 420.
ART 425 PAINTING III (4 credits)
Continues the exploration of the personal and historical nature of painting while investigating other media (e.g., tempera), skills (e.g., presenting and writing about the work), and preparing a cohesive body of work for a final critique. Prerequisite: ART 325.
ART 426 PAINTING IV (4 credits)
Students advance skills gained in ART 425. Prerequisite: ART 425.
ART 435 PHOTOGRAPHY III (4 credits)
Builds upon skills gained in Photography II and may be taught in conjunction with that course, with students pursuing similar work on a more advanced level. Prerequisite: ART 335.
ART 445 WEAVING III (4 credits)
Advanced work in weaving, dyeing and textile design. Parallels the Weaving II class, with students pursuing similar work on a more advanced level and defining individualized studio projects and subjects for research. Prerequisite: ART 345.
ART 446 WEAVING IV (4 credits)
Students advance skills gained in ART 445. Prerequisite: ART 445.
ART 447 PHOTOGRAPHY IV (4 credits)
May be taught in conjunction with Photography II and III. Emphasizes the further development of the student's self-expression through the creation of a cohesive portfolio of exhibition-quality art work. Prerequisite: ART 437.
ART 475 INDIVIDUAL STUDIO EXPERIENCE (1-3 credits)
Advanced, intensive studio work, proposed to and planned with a member of the art faculty.
ART 481 INTERNSHIP (1-3 credits)
ART 482 SPECIAL TOPICS (3 credits)
Selected topics determined by the instructor for upper-level study. Recent topics include: Art Since 1967; Matisse, Picasso and Early Modernism, and Renaissance & Baroque seminar. Prerequisite: At least one other Art History course or consent of the instructor.
ART 483 TEACHING ASSISTANTS (1-3 credits)
ART 484 FORD/KNIGHT PROJECT (1-4 credits)
Collaborative research with faculty funded by the Ford/Knight Program. Recent topics include: Ceremonial Maces, Quaker Art, Kiln Design, Meetinghouse Photography, West African Textiles and Kilim Weaving.
ART 485 INDEPENDENT STUDY (1-3 credits)
Investigation of a specific topic conceived and planned by the student in consultation with a faculty adviser in studio art or art history.
ART 487 SENIOR PROJECT (1 credit)
Art majors are strongly encouraged to register for this course during the Fall Semester of their senior year in preparation for their Senior Capstone Experience. Departmental approval required.
ART 488 SENIOR CAPSTONE EXPERIENCE (3 credits)
Students should register for Senior Capstone Experience during the Spring Semester of their final year. Departmental approval required.