What Can I Do With A Major In Art?

Our mission is to provide a comprehensive instructional program in visual art that will develop professional artists, art historians/critics, art educators, and an informed public. Visual images are a powerful means of communication and we strive to set a high standard of literacy in this dominant cultural language. Central to this mission are opportunities to create original works, critically analyze artworks and images past and present, and research the history of art/culture and the contexts in which art is produced. Through these processes our students develop critical and creative thinking skills, cultivate an informed aesthetic, and obtain the ability to make judgment about artworks and images.

The School of Art provides comprehensive education in studio art, including intensive hands-on studio practice, inter-disciplinary studies, art history, criticism, and theory. Programs provide thorough professional training for students interested in careers in the field of art. For current information about visiting artists, exhibitions in the gallery or events please visit the NEWS: ARTBLOG, or the CVPA webpage, or call the Art Office at (406) 243-4181. Degree offerings include the BA, BFA, and MFA in Art. Areas of specialization are Art Education, Art History, Ceramics, Drawing, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture as well as a strong support of interdisciplinary studies. An MA degree in Studio Art and/or Art History is also offered, as well as courses that prepare students for certification in teaching art.

The School of Art has an average enrollment of 350 undergraduate majors, and 10-25 graduate students. The teaching staff consists of 12 full-time permanent faculty, five graduate teaching assistants, and adjunct faculty. There are four galleries on campus and the school maintains an active visiting artist program. The School of Art has an institutional affiliation with both the CAA (College Art Association) and FATE (Foundations in Art: Theory and Education). The University of Montana is an accredited institutional member of NASAD (National Association of Schools of Art and Design).

Fine artists create art for their own reasons and may display their work in art galleries, public spaces, museums and homes. Some of their work may be done at the specific request of clients -- whether private individuals, corporate clients, or a public commissioning body. Fine artists work independently, choosing their mediums and subject matters as they see fit. Often, they specialize in one or more forms of art, i.e. painting, sculpting, or printmaking. Some artists make a living from selling their work at galleries or craft fairs, some earn their living primarily from large scale public art commissions, and in many instances visual artists work in more commercially connected endeavors, while pursuing their artistic goals.

Many careers do not require a specific major but rather a wide range of demonstrated skills and accomplishments. Regardless of career choices, increasing one's marketability to employers through internships, responsible work experience, good grades and involvement in college activities is important. A bachelor's degree is sufficient for many entry level positions, but for advancement in an area of specialization, an advanced degree may be required.

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