An eight-foot portrait of the College's first president was painted in 1894 by Mrs. Anna Sanford Brodhead, first chairperson of the newly instituted Art Department. In recent years the tradition has been continued as courses are designed to develop in the liberal arts student an intelligent appreciation of our art heritage and to encourage development of high standards for aesthetic judgment and production. Art majors are exposed to a broad range of courses while specializing in one area, such as painting, sculpture, digital imaging/graphic design, or ceramics.
With the move into the new Maves Art Center facility, the long-anticipated consolidation of the Art Department into one location offers promising unprecedented opportunities for students and community. Six thousand square feet serves the upper level with a new digital media studio, a drawing and painting studio, a new museum quality gallery, and an art history classroom with state of the art projection technology. The lower level includes a woodshop and ample space for sculpture, ceramics, and senior studios.
Students preparing for careers in art are expected to achieve a professional level of artistic production with a senior project that includes an exhibition of work and optional research. Both faculty and students regularly exhibit in local, state, and regional competition.
Art graduates are well prepared for graduate work, graphic art, or studio art. The Art Department emphasizes the need for craftsmanship and technical understanding of art materials and methods while at the same time encouraging individual creative expression. Although Art Education is not offered as a major, students may pursue an endorsement in art to complement their certification.