Visual Studies

Dr. Leah Modigliani, Program Head
Tyler Building, Room 230C

The Bachelor of Arts in Visual Studies program is ideal for socially-conscious artists who want to utilize the resources of a larger research university while accessing the historic studio traditions of Tyler School of Art and Architecture. The BA in Visual Studies is complemented by its situation in the department of Art History, where art historians and contemporary artists work together to foster historical and contemporary understandings about global art and visual culture, and the power of image-making.

Visual Studies students develop skills as makers and thinkers in an equal ratio of studio and academic classes, and the curriculum allows for a higher-than-average number of electives that can be chosen according to the student's particular needs and interests. Our curriculum is consciously interdisciplinary, and not oriented towards specialization, so that students can explore the theoretical and technical aspects of art making outside the traditional restrictions of a single studio area. The skills needed to succeed today in the arts are not the same as previous generations. Today young artists need to be able to write about their own work in relation to contemporary visual culture, be able to find and work with collaborators in many different related occupations, know how to find and take advantage of opportunities, know how to access financial and social resources from many different places, and use and adapt to rapidly evolving tools, technology and data effectively.

Graduates of Visual Studies are well prepared for a wide-range of careers in the cultural sphere as exhibiting artists and published writers, museum and gallery work, as curators, positions in design and media industries, as small business owners and entrepreneurs, and in the non-profit sectors of education, political advocacy, and community leadership. Graduates are also well prepared for advanced academic training, and recent students have gone on to complete graduate degrees in fine arts, art therapy, textile design, book restoration, art history, curatorial studies, and art education.