Majors & Minors

Studio Art Majors

Please note: Students beginning the major as of Fall 2024 will no longer be required to take ARTS 2000 for entry into all upper division courses.  ARTS 2610 will still be required for painting and printmaking courses.  If you have questions, please contact a studio major advisor (contact information below).

Please note: Two of our concentrations’ names are changing effective Fall 2024. Cinematography will be called Filmmaking and New Media will be called Digital Art. You may see both the old and new names being used while we work to get all the instances updated online and in print. Apologies for any confusion!

Studio Art majors acquire essential artistic skills as well as experience in the handling of a wide variety of ideas and methods. Through critical thinking, students gain experience with the problems of creation and with the ideas and practice of artists in the contemporary world. The Studio Art major requires a concentration in Digital Art, Filmmaking, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, or Sculpture.

The minimum 30 credits required for the major are:

  • 6 credits of introductory courses at the 2000-level
  • 3 ARTH credits of a modern/contemporary art history course (list provided by department)
  • 12 ARTS credits at the 2000-level or above (including at least 3 credits in concentration area)
  • 6 ARTS credits at 3000- or 4000-level in concentration area
  • 3 elective departmental credits (ARTH at 2000- to 4000-level or ARTS at 3000- to 4000-level)

concentration is required of all majors, and it is made up of at least three courses (9 credits) in a concentration area, with a minimum of two of those courses (6 credits) at the 3000- or 4000- level. Students may fulfil their concentration requirement with credits from their introductory, workshop, advanced, general, or elective credits. Credits for a course may only be counted towards one concentration in a major’s transcript. Special Topics courses may meet concentration requirements. 

Please note: ARTS 4450 (Advanced Major Seminar), ARTS 4452 (Advanced Major Seminar), and ARTS 4900 (Independent Study in Art) do not count toward major credit.

Majors must have a minimum GPA of 2.000 in all 30 credits of Studio Major courses or be dropped from the program. A grade of C- or below does not count for major credit. With approval of the Director of the Undergraduate Program, students may transfer up to 9 credits to the major.

Requirements for Minor

The minor in Studio Art requires 18 credits in ARTS courses including at least one 2000-level course and 15 credits of ARTS 2000-level or above courses in at least two concentration areas. ARTS 4900 (Independent Study in Art) does not count toward minor in Studio Art.

Minors must have a minimum GPA of 2.000 in all 18 credits of Studio Minor courses. No ARTS course graded C- or below may count for minor credit. With Approval of the Director of the Undergraduate Program, students may transfer up to 6 credits to the minor.

Descriptions of Concentrations

Filmmaking students study technical, historical, and theoretical issues that apply to film and its relationship to the traditional visual arts. It introduces experimental 16mm film production as a practice of visual art. The student work ranges in filmmaking, videography, both cinematic and theatrical lighting, making documentaries, moving camera, etc. Students work with faculty who are professionals in film production and film history, including award-winning filmmakers and internationally recognized film scholars.

Courses in Filmmaking

Digital Art​ is informed by experimentation and critique. It introduces digital techniques in the context of fine art. Courses explore technologies including digital animation, motion graphics, video art and installation.

Courses in Digital Art

Painting provides students with the opportunity to explore material, technical, historical, and theoretical issues that reflect the diversity of painting today. Student work ranges in understanding and response, embodying a multiplicity of creative concerns and values. Encourages both medium-specific and interdisciplinary approaches that revolve around material, concept, discursive dialogue, and community building in a studio-based environment.  

Courses in Painting

Photography provides students with a broad knowledge of photographic techniques and their applied methods for contemporary artmaking. The concentration introduces students to a diverse range of contemporary and historic practices in the medium, from traditional silver-based analog photography and alternative photo processes to innovative approaches in digital image making and processing.  

Courses in Photography

Printmaking exposes students to both traditional and innovative methods in print media. It introduces students to various technical possibilities, including relief, intaglio, monotype, and lithography printmaking processes. All levels of printmaking also explore examples from the historical and contemporary worlds of fine art, and include readings including art, philosophy, and science.  

Courses in Printmaking

Sculpture studies technical, historical, and theoretical issues that apply to the discipline and its relationship to the traditional visual arts. It investigates the sculptural process through modeling, carving, fabricating, and casting. The student work ranges in mold making, metal casting, and non-traditional sculpture materials as assigned. It offers the student a program of study to explore interdisciplinary exchanges that revolve around material study, concept, and critical dialogue in a studio-based environment.  

Courses in Sculpture:

Advanced Major Seminar and Distinguished Majors Program

The Advanced Major Seminar is a year-long seminar class designed for majors in their fourth year who have demonstrated exceptional engagement with their studio work and wish to undertake an extended project under the supervision of a faculty advisor. On admission, students register for ARTS 4450 in the first semester of the program, and for ARTS 4452 in the second. Advanced Major Seminar credits are taken in addition to the 30 credits required of the major.

Studio Art majors in their third year with superior academic performance and who will graduate with a 3.4 GPA or better are encouraged to apply for the Distinguished Majors Program (DMP). On admission to the program, students take six credits of Advanced Major Seminar (ARTS 4450 in the first semester, followed by ARTS 4452 in the second) beyond the 30 credits required of the major. A DMP student’s major concentration must include a 4000-level course. DMP theses require the University’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval; this should be acquired with the help of the primary faculty advisor before beginning the fieldwork. DMP thesis work is exhibited in the spring of the fourth year.

Courses for Advanced and Distinguished Majors:

  • ARTS 4450 – Advanced Major Seminar: 3 credits
  • ARTS 4452 – Advanced Major Seminar: 3 credits

New Declarations

Students who wish to declare a major or a minor in Studio Art should e-mail the appropriate advisor (see below) for an appointment. 

Please complete the Major Declaration Form or Minor Declaration Form via DocuSign prior to your advising appointment.

Studio Art Major Advisors:

Akemi Ohira 

For questions about majoring or minoring in Studio Art, please contact:

Studio Art Director of the Undergraduate Program
Akemi Ohira

Additional Information

For more information, contact the Director of Undergraduate Program in Studio Art, Department of Art, Program in Studio Art, Ruffin Hall, 179 Culbreth Road, Charlottesville, VA 22903; (434) 243-1785;

Course Decriptions

ARTS 2000 - Introduction to Studio Art (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2110 - Introduction to Photography I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2112 - Color Photography (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2220 - Introduction to Digital Art I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2222 - Introduction to Digital Art II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2310 - Installation and Performance Art I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2312 - Installation and Performance Art II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2370 - Introduction to Filmmaking I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2372 - Introduction to Filmmaking II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2511 - Special Topics in Photography (Credits: 3) ARTS 2520 - Special Topics in Digital Art (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2530 - Special Topics in Filmmaking (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2532 - Special Topics in Performance Art (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2559 - New Course in Studio Art (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2560 - Special Topics in Printmaking (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2570 - Special Topics in Painting (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2580 - Special Topics in Sculpture (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2610 - Drawing I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2620 - Drawing II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2630 - Life Drawing I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2632 - Life Drawing II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2670 - Introduction to Intaglio & Monotype Printmaking (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2672 - Introduction to Lithography & Relief Printmaking (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2710 - Introduction to Water-Based Painting (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2712 - Introduction to Oil Painting (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2810 - Introduction to Sculpture I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 2812 - Introduction to Sculpture II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3110 - Large Format Photography (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3112 - Workshop Photography II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3220 - Workshop Digital Art Part I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3222 - Workshop Digital Art II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3370 - Workshop Film I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3372 - Workshop Film II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3559 - New Course in Studio Art (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3620 - Workshop Drawing
ARTS 3670 - Workshop Printmaking I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3672 - Workshop Printmaking II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3710 - Workshop Painting I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3712 - Workshop Painting II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3810 - Workshop Sculpture I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 3812 - Workshop Sculpture II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4110 - Advanced Photography I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4112 - Advanced Photography II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4220 - Advanced Digital Art I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4222 - Advanced Digital Art II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4370 - Advanced Filmmaking I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4372 - Advanced Filmmaking II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4450 - Advanced Major Seminar (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4452 - Advanced Major Seminar (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4559 - New Course in Studio Art (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4670 - Advanced Printmaking I (Credits: 3
ARTS 4672 - Advanced Printmaking II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4710 - Advanced Painting I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4712 - Advanced Painting II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4810 - Advanced Sculpture I (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4812 - Advanced Sculpture II (Credits: 3)
ARTS 4900 - Independent Study in Art (Credits: 3)


The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements. These publications may be found here.