Studio Arts Minor

College of Liberal Arts
Undergraduate minor

About this program

Since the beginning of human history, people have had a need to create images and objects. These impulses emerge for different reasons--communication, commerce, an act of devotion, necessity for utilitarian wares, personal expression, decoration, therapy, and so on.

Courses offered in studio arts allow students of various skill levels to examine the history of art and craft, sharpen critical thinking skills, and explore the possibilities of the sometimes instinctive and elusive creative process. To these ends, a minor is offered in studio arts.

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Enrolling in this program

Current students: Declare this program

Once you’re admitted as an undergraduate student and have met any further admission requirements your chosen program may have, you may declare a major or declare an optional minor.

Future students: Apply now

Apply to Metropolitan State: Start the journey toward your Studio Arts Minor now. Learn about the steps to enroll or, if you have questions about what Metropolitan State can offer you, request information, visit campus or chat with an admissions counselor.

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Course requirements

Requirements (20 credits)

Studio Arts Minor Required Courses (8 credits)

ARTS 106 Introduction to Drawing

4 credits

This class focuses on the principles and practices of drawing, through an exploration of space, shading, volume, perspective and composition. Class discussions and projects include use of materials, color, artists and movements of the past, and contemporary trends in drawing and painting. Emphasis is placed on the development of hand-eye coordination skills.

Full course description for Introduction to Drawing

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ARTS 203 Introduction to Digital Arts

4 credits

This course explores computer based image-making and printing technologies. Through the investigation of various printing materials, students will have the opportunity to produce two and three-dimensional projects using contemporary methods. Students will gain hands-on experience with digital drawing tools, photographic and graphic designs using image based software while learning about the formal elements and principles of design. Art theory and practice will be presented in conversation with lectures and peer review. Professional artists and designers using these processes in their work will be highlighted in the course.

Full course description for Introduction to Digital Arts

Studio Arts Minor Electives (12 credits)

ARTS 304 has various subtitles. ARTS 301, 304, 320, and 360I can be repeated once for credit if topic is different.

ARTS 300 Museums and Galleries

4 credits

As students visit local museums and galleries, they become familiar with many of the Twin Cities' exhibition facilities and reflect on the experience of viewing art. This course offers an approach to understanding and appreciating the visual arts as one develops critical thinking skills. Emphasis is placed on the articulation of ideas through written and spoken words. Note: Students are responsible for their own transportation.

Full course description for Museums and Galleries

ARTS 301 Current Topics: Variable Subtitles

2 credits

Current Topics is a course designation that is used to identify timely themes and various media that supplement and enrich a student's art education. Topics will change from semester to semester. If more than one topics course is taken in fulfillment of the major, they must be different course titles. Topics may include, but are not limited to: book arts, relief printmaking, mosaic sculptures, street photography and assemblage.

Full course description for Current Topics: Variable Subtitles

ARTS 302 Exhibition Practices

2 credits

This internship is designed to give students an opportunity to learn about the basic functions and day to day operations of an educational art gallery. Students will assist in the installation and dismantling of various exhibitions, featuring numerous forms of art. In doing so, students will gather practical knowledge about handling and lighting artwork, creating didactics, generating and distributing publicity, working with artists and creating corresponding programming. This knowledge should qualify a student to apply for entry level positions at other exhibition facilities, create groundwork for additional coursework in Museum Studies, and/or prepare students to mount exhibitions of their own in a professional manner. Variable meeting times. Contact instructor for details prior to registering. S/N grading only.

Full course description for Exhibition Practices

ARTS 304 Topics in Fibers

4 credits

This studio course explores historical and contemporary approaches to fiber arts as well as examination of significant figures and movements. Traditional techniques and contemporary applications of paper and fabric bridge the gap between crafts and fine arts. Students should consult the Class Schedule for particular topics (such as papermaking, wearable art and surface design.) Note: This course may be taken three times for credit as long as the topic is different.

Full course description for Topics in Fibers

ARTS 307 Painting

4 credits

This course explores principles and practices related to color, shading, volume, perspective and composition. Class discussion and projects include color theory, application techniques, artists and movements of the past and contemporary trends in painting. Students complete original paintings using acrylics.

Full course description for Painting

ARTS 309 Photography: History of a Visual Artform

4 credits

This course presents a historical survey of photography within the context of scientific, cultural and artistic forces. From the camera obscura and daguerreotypes to Surrealism and Social Realism, this course addresses the broad and expressive nature of photographic imagery. In addition to exploring the technical history of the medium, the class is designed to promote formal articulation, genre identification and evaluation of meaning within diverse cultural contexts. Students will leave this course with a stronger sense of the ways in which photography has contributed to the global artistic landscape and our conception of reality. Activities include slide lectures, videos, visiting artist presentations and field trips to local collections and studios. No lab component.

Full course description for Photography: History of a Visual Artform

ARTS 311 Watercolors

4 credits

This course explores the fundamental principles and techniques associated with the medium of watercolor paints, The coursework includes color theory, application techniques, and traditional/contemporary trends in painting. Once rudimentary skills are established through representational compositions, students will have the opportunity to investigate the expressive nature of watercolors through abstract imagery. Two field trips are schedules outdoors.

Full course description for Watercolors

ARTS 316 Intermediate Photography

4 credits

Intermediate photographic techniques and approaches to image making using digital cameras, editing, software, printers, and lighting equipment. Class projects and discussions include image manipulation, composition, lighting, and film/analog photography, as well as artist movements of the past and contemporary trends in photography. Students explore photography as a creative form.

Full course description for Intermediate Photography

ARTS 320 Topics in Clay: Variable Subtitles

3 credits

Topics in Clay is a course that explores the artistic possibilities of working with ceramics. Functional and sculptural approaches are addressed. These twelve-week, three credit courses are taught at Northern Clay Center in Minneapolis. Topics will change from semester to semester. If more than one topics course is taken in fulfillment of the major, they must be different course titles. Topics may include, but are not limited to: Wheel Throwing, Hand Building, Surface/Imagery Technique and Firing Methods.

Full course description for Topics in Clay: Variable Subtitles

ARTS 360I Studio Arts Student Designed Independent Study

2-4 credits

Student-designed independent studies give Metropolitan State students the opportunity to plan their own study. This type of learning strategy can be useful because it allows students to focus on particular media or techniques; to pursue a unique project that requires specialized study; refine skills and ideas that may not be covered in existing curriculum. Note: This course may be taken a number of times up to a total of 16 credits under the supervision of any CAS/CWA studio arts faculty member. Students should contact the instructor to make arrangements prior to registration.

Full course description for Studio Arts Student Designed Independent Study