The Department of Art provides an environment and curriculum devoted to developing skills, stimulating critical thinking and expressing creativity within the frame-work of a Christian liberal arts program. In the freshman year art students begin a four-course visual foundations sequence in drawing and design. Students continue to complete a four-course Art History sequence and pursue visual studies in one of several areas of concentration: Drawing, Painting, Ceramics, Sculpture, and Graphic Design. Students may also choose to major in Digital Media Studies. An art major who wishes to teach art grades K-12 may receive licensure. See Teacher Licensure III. READ MORE
Through department activities students may participate in a variety of art related service projects, field trips, and social events. The University Art Gallery presents ongoing series of art exhibits highlighting a wide variety of professional artists’ work. In addition, the gallery presents an annual exhibit of student work. Graduating senior exhibitions are also held in the gallery.
Graduates of the department may continue studies at the graduate level or pursue work in a variety of areas such as digital imaging, graphics, illustration, independent studio art, museum gallery sales, photography, teaching, or web page design.
Students desiring consideration for transfer studio credit, advanced placement, department scholarships, and workships must submit a portfolio for review by the art faculty. Awards are based on this review and outstanding performance in art coursework.
The studio is equipped with large studio spaces, well equipped and ventilated. The student has 24-hour access to the studio seven days a week. Students have free and unlimited access to clay and glazes. The studio normally stocks 30,000lbs of clay per semester. We are equipped to work with and encourage students to experiment with stoneware and earthenware. The studio has 10 Brent wheels, 8 kilns including 2 large gas, 2 large electric, 2 large wood and soda, a primitive and raku. At the end of the student’s sophomore year they can apply for one of 6 large private studios.
The Drawing curriculum at Union is a skill-based program designed to train the student in the use of a variety of different media and practices. While emphasis is placed on the development of proficiency in a particular medium, the major is exposed to trends both traditional and contemporary in drawing as a craft and is encouraged to explore personal forms of expression from a Christian perspective. The Drawing/Painting Lab is located in the Penick Building and supports multiple courses. The lab is outfitted with easels, stools art storage, safety equipment and ventilation for many types of materials. Private studio space in drawing may be awarded to deserving students for the pursuit of individual research.
The world around us is constantly shifting. In Union’s graphic design emphasis, you will study and analyze this movement in visual culture and make work that not only engages, but also informs and changes the perspective of cultural communication from the inside out.
Union’s program is a skill-based model formulated in the Bauhaus method of education and strongly holds to the apprenticeship system. Students will be challenged to think about design outside of the box and engage in the design world through new and innovative forms. Students are encouraged to view design through a Christian perspective and visually converse through topics such as: design ethics, typography, illustration, advertising, identity design and package design. At Union, you will have the opportunity to join the greater design community with the American Advertising Federation (AdFed) and the American Institute for Graphic Artists (AIGA). Both of which, are national organizations with active chapters on campus. With the landscape of media changing at a quickened pace, Union’s faculty and staff are active professionals in their fields and work to find placement for each of their students in local, national and international internships. Union provides its graphic design students with a state-of-the-art MAC lab, which is supported by the most current and cutting-edge platforms and software available. Students are also eligible by their sophomore year to apply for studio space in the art department. Union also plays host to a variety of national and local guest speakers, working professionals, printers, agency field trips and serves as a connection point to a vast array of alumni that provide a touchstone for many of our future graduates.
Although painting as a traditional medium in art has changed little in technique and practice since the 15th century, the thought processes, inspiration, philosophy and aesthetic concerns have all changed, often radically, and are of great importance to the student who desires to pursue painting as a field of study. Painting at Union is a skill-based program that attempts to combine the best that both tradition and the contemporary art world have to offer. We encourage our students to “think Christianly” about all aspects of the art-making process from the functional to the conceptual, understanding and perhaps challenging the established modes of thinking about paint in the art world, the church and society in general.
The Drawing/Painting Lab is located in the Penick Building and supports multiple courses. The lab is outfitted with easels, stools, art storage, safety equipment and proper ventilation for many types of materials as well as the tools necessary for the construction of painting supports. Private studio space in painting may be awarded to deserving students for the pursuit of individual research.
Art Photography at Union University introduces students to the fundamentals of traditional black and white film photography. In beginning photography classes, students learn how to operate manual 35mm SLR cameras, process black and white film, as well as produce silver gelatin prints. As students grow in their knowledge of the fundamentals of photography and continue to pursue art photography classes, they are urged to think more critically and challenged conceptually to produce bodies of photographic work. Advanced art photography classes, begin to mix film and digital photography, in addition to learning the practicalities of using flash and studio lighting. The printing lab is outfitted with 16 workstation areas, each with a photo enlarger made by either Bessler or Omega. Class instruction includes visual lectures, practical demonstrations, in-class discussions and critiques centered around students assigned work. Photography students have 24-hour access to the darkroom and printing labs on campus to produce their bodies of work.
God was a sculptor. At Union, we view the act of Sculpture as a valid conversation concerning our heavenly Creator and an accurate method to address the world around us. This emphasis was designed with a skill focus at the forefront, as well as, practical knowledge of material, a detailed history of mediums and the practices of a working artist. Students are instructed in areas of metals, wood, plaster, clay, soft sculpture, alternative mediums and methods of replication. Students have 24-hour access to the department. The labs are outfitted with welding equipment, a working wood shop, kilns and other needed tools. Studio space is awarded based on merit and students can apply after their sophomore semester. Enrolled sculpture students are also eligible to participate in field trips to museums and studios of national artists, invited to display public art around campus and encouraged to participate behind the scenes of the Jackson Union Sculpture Tour (JUST), which takes place in the Jackson community every fall.
Please see the Academic Catalogue descriptions for more details and a listing of minors.
Advisor: Melinda Posey
The American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) local chapter at Union desires to get Union students involved in a dialogue of a great design community. The national organization is the oldest design organization and provides resources to students in five functions: information, communication, inspiration, validation, and representation. AIGA will also give our students an insight into the function of design in the professional world and provide them with contacts to fellow students and professional mentors beyond Union.
Advisor: Haelim Allen
The Zeta Gamma chapter of Kappa Pi serves many purposes. Its objectives span from the promotion of art education/enlightenment to organizing people with an interest in art for informal social gatherings, as well as for service and community related projects. Overall, it aims to promote leadership skills, acts of service, high standards, and an awareness of art at Union and in the community.