About the Major
The Visual Arts Major offers a multidisciplinary education in
the arts with advanced study in one specialization. Students
may choose courses in art history, computer art, criticism,
design, drawing, filmmaking, painting, photography, sculpture
and video. Advanced specialization is available in art history,
art and technology, drawing, painting, photography and sculpture.
The program begins with Introduction to the Fine Arts
Visual Arts, which acquaints students with the art-making ideas
in such media as painting, photography, and sculpture, and lays
the foundation for a personal and critical understanding of
art. Students then take art history courses and a range of studio
courses leading to study in their area of specialization. After
12 credits of advanced, specialized study, Seniors take Advanced
Visual Art, which focuses on personal work, culminating in their
Senior Exhibition. Visual Arts students also enjoy wide opportunities
to earn college credit as interns, working with artists or art
organizations. In addition, courses with field work components
are offered as an opportunity for experiential learning in specific
areas of student interest. Ramapo students have consistently
developed quality portfolios which have enabled them to advance
their studies in graduate school, enter the professional art
world, and work in art-related fields. Students may also choose
to prepare for arts education and art related contract majors.
The Visual Arts are taught within a liberal arts context that
makes the study and practice of art relevant to non-majors as
well as majors. The study of art not only increases self-confidence
in expression and enhances aesthetic satisfaction, but also
reveals the social, political and ideological concerns of the
culture that produces it. The art history curriculum, in particular,
develops this understanding, allowing the student to make essential
connections among the world, the work of art, the artist, and
the viewer. To enhance the understanding of these relationships,
a Study Abroad Program in Art is offered in Matera, Italy during
the summer term.
Members of he Visual Arts faculty are all nationally recognized
active professionals and can therefore bring the understanding
and immediacy of such experience to students. Students enjoy
an intimate, intensive, creative atmosphere and have greater
opportunities for close work with faculty than is usually the
case in schools with large art departments.
Students with academic and career interests outside the designated
areas of specialization may elect to design a Contemporary Arts
contract major to help fulfill their goals. Visual Art faculty
can provide information regarding offerings in the areas of
Art Therapy, Arts Management, and related art activities contained
within the Arts in Community contract major.
Students completing this program receive a B.A. degree. A minor
is not available.
The Visual Arts Teaching Certification program, certifying students
to teach grades K through 12, involves a combined course of
study in Teacher Certification together with the Fine Arts/Visual
Arts Major. Students should refer to the guidelines for the
Teacher Certification Program description in this Catalog and
seek faculty advisement. Students can also elect to obtain certification
in Elementary Education through the Fine Arts Visual Arts major.
The Visual Arts program is housed in the Angelica and Russ Berrie
Center for the Performing and Visual Arts and the Sculpture
Studio. The Berrie Center houses spacious, well-equipped art
studios where students can study the conventional media of painting,
and drawing, as well as digital media, video, film, and photography.
The new sculpture studio, built as a separate structure, provides
facilities for metal casting, welding, and fabrication, as well
as space for the traditional techniques of modeling and carving.
The Ramapo College Art Galleries emphasize exhibition of contemporary
art in all media and provide opportunities for student learning
in gallery and museum practice.