Bachelor of Arts in Visual Arts
The Visual Arts major provides students with an opportunity to develop their independent vision and creative practice as artists in an educational environment emphasizing conceptual research and expression across media. The curriculum balances studio-based coursework with historical and theoretical. Students intending to major in Visual Arts begin with foundations classes in visual research and analysis and then progress to intermediate studio courses in specific media and techniques (drawing, painting, sculpture and installation, photography, time-based media, alternative and new media practices, experimental animation, and others). All majors also complete a four-semester sequence of studio courses (Studio I, II, III, and IV) designed to foster independent work at an advanced level, followed by a year-long Senior Studio project in the final year, which culminates in a public exhibition at the annual degree show in the Sharjah Art Gallery.
Declaration of the Visual Arts Major
To be eligible to declare a Visual Arts major, students must have completed four courses in the program: ARTV 2200 (Analogue and Digital Practices), ARTV 2113 (Introduction to Visual Cultures), and two more Visual Arts studio courses. Final recommendation is made by the Visual Arts faculty after an interview and portfolio review.
The Visual Cultures Program
The Visual Arts major participates in the Visual Cultures Program at AUC, which provides the home for interdisciplinary study in the theory and practice across the three individual majors of Visual Arts, Graphic Design, and Film. Established within the Department of the Arts in 2011 in response to the increasingly interdisciplinary character of visual creative practice in the 21st century, the program offers courses that facilitate research-driven creative practice and the critical study and conscious use of diverse visual media in cultural context.
As contemporary “visual culture” is a necessarily open-ended field in continual transformation, the Visual Cultures Program is a work in progress. It currently supports two introductory courses: the studio course Analogue and Digital Practices, which is cross-listed as ARTV 2200, DSGN 2200, and FILM 2200 and offers foundational study in visual research in a cross-disciplinary environment; and the lecture course Introduction to Visual Cultures, which is cross listed as ARTV 2113, DSGN 2113, and FILM 2113 and provides students with a primer in the key terms and concepts for the analysis of visual texts past and present.
A total of 120 credits are required for the bachelor’s degree in Visual Arts: