Studio Art Major

Learning to see more clearly and integrate disparate ideas, processes, and types of information is at the core of studio investigation in a liberal arts setting.

Learning goals and expectations:

Prospective Studio Art majors and minors should complete all 100-level art requirements (including ARTH 100 or CAMS 101) during their first two years at Wellesley before concentrating in a particular medium or studying internationally. Note that AP or IB courses may not be counted toward fulfillment of a major or minor in Studio Art. Given that most studio courses have prerequisites, students are advised to pace their course selections carefully so as to be ready to concentrate on advanced and independent studio projects culminating in a major gallery exhibition in their senior year.

Requirements for the Major

Students who entered Wellesley in Fall 2021 and earlier must complete a minimum of 11 units to fulfill the major, comprised of:

Students entering Wellesley in Fall 2022 and later must complete a minimum of 10 units to fulfill the major, comprised of:

ARTS 317H-ARTS 318H is a yearlong capstone overlay offered as a half-credit seminar in the fall and spring semester, leading up to a senior exhibition. Students considering majors in Studio Art should plan to enroll in this course during their junior or senior year.

Honors in Studio Art

Honors in Studio Art is earned by the demonstration of excellence in both course work and a self-directed senior thesis project. A Studio Art thesis consists of a sustained body of visual work produced over two semesters, culminating in a formal exhibition in the Jewett Arts Center galleries, and accompanied by a paper of 15-20 pages documenting the development of the project. Seniors who have completed all foundational requirements in the major and have a grade point average of at least 3.5 in studio courses above the 100 level may propose a thesis project for honors in the spring of the junior year. A Studio Art major interested in pursuing an honors project should discuss their ideas with a potential thesis advisor in the spring of their junior year and take at least one advanced course in their proposed media concentration before the senior year. If approved, this yearlong project is guided by a studio faculty advisor and assessed periodically by the full studio faculty. The gallery exhibitions and thesis paper are reviewed by an orals thesis committee in the spring of the senior year in order to determine honors.

A more detailed review of the process and timelines related to thesis work is available on the department website. Students should review this information in their junior year or earlier, before proposing honors work.

Graduate Study in Studio Art

Students considering M.F.A programs in the visual arts should aim to develop a deep major (more than the minimum 11 units for students for students who entered Fall 2021 and earlier, more than the minimum 10 units for students for students who enter in Fall 2022 and beyond) and pursue affiliated course work in Art History, Philosophy and Visual Culture whenever possible. Since contemporary art is often interdisciplinary, students are encouraged to discuss the breadth of their course selections with their studio advisors.