With a Painting emphasis in the Bachelor of Fine Arts Program, you’ll build strong painting skills with hands-on studio time. You will also develop problem-solving and decision-making skills for all artistic disciplines in a classroom setting.
This is an intense and immersive studio experience, coupled with inspiration from world-class art museums in the city and exposure to a wide range of visiting artists and critics.
The structure of our curriculum allows you to focus on painting while also exploring and collaborating across other fine arts disciplines. You'll expand your cultural and intellectual understanding of the world, and prepare to navigate the complexities of being an artist in today's world.
Get a behind-the-scenes look at the Painting emphasis in the Fine Arts program. Through research, studio experimentation, artistic invention and daily practice, you'll hone the skills and practices necessary to execute your artistic vision.
On Monday, Oct. 21, the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage announced that more than $8.4 million will fund 27 project grants and 12 Pew Fellowships for Philadelphia’s artists and cultural organizations. Two of these fellowships were awarded to UArts alum and faculty member Dinita Clark BFA ’05 (Dance), as well as UArts alum Jonathan Lyndon Chase BFA ’13 (Painting).
Dinita Clark, senior lecturer in the School of Dance, is a choreographer, performer and educator who engages the vocabularies of street dance and hip-hop culture to create dynamic, polyrhythmic performances. Her teaching practice addresses the lack of training for women in the foundations of hip-hop and provides accessible dance education to “unlock self-discovery, self-worth and integrity for female dancers,” challenging preconceived ideas of hip-hop culture while creating opportunities for women within the genre. Clark has performed and taught in Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Kazakhstan and Palestine, as a U.S. cultural ambassador.
“The essence of my work stems from the social aspect of hip-hop dance culture and produces a community of acceptance, unity and individuality.” — Dinita Clark, 2019 Pew Fellow
Clark co-founded Just Sole! Street Dance Theater Company with her partner and fellow faculty member, Kyle Clark. She also co-founded Funky Sole Fundamentals, a workshop series dedicated to the preservation of hip-hop, house and funk styles.
“The essence of my work stems from the social aspect of hip-hop dance culture and produces a community of acceptance, unity and individuality,” says Clark.
Pew Fellowships provide awards of $75,000 to individual artists. This year’s fellows are working in visual art, literature, dance and theater; 10 live and work in Philadelphia.
“Our annual grants foster the highest levels of artistic and programmatic excellence,” said Paula Marincola, Pew’s executive director. “The ambitious work these artists and institutions will produce in the coming months will inspire audiences and further elevate Philadelphia’s visibility as a thriving hub for culture.”
Jonathan Lyndon Chase also earned a Pew Fellowship for his work in visual art. Chase utilizes various media in his portraits, which reflect the complexities of black and queer identity. He describes his subjects as “friends and family or my own reflection,” often considering both the private and public nature of the body through life-sized figures and large-scale canvases.
Chase was recently named a “young artist to watch” by Artnet News. He holds a BFA from University of the Arts and an MFA from Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. “The weight of line and volume of color in my paintings are tools to narrate the experience of living as more than one thing at a time,” he says. “Fluidity is important in the pursuit of freedom.” (pewcenterarts.org)
6ABC Action News recently visited the studio of UArts alum and 2011–2012 Fulbright Scholar Maureen Drdak BFA ’75 (Painting). Drdak recently returned from a month-long retreat in Nepal in continuation of her Fulbright work, the Prakriti Project, which pioneered and established the first synthesis of repoussé metalwork and contemporary painting.
Drdak is the only practicing artist in the U.S. who has learned firsthand the ancient metalwork technique, working directly with repoussé master Rabindra Shakya, grandson of the famed historic master Kuber Singh Shakya and owner of Image Atelier in Nepal. Repoussé is an ancient technique in which sheet metal is hammered from both sides to produce a three-dimensional bas-relief.
You can watch her process in the 6ABC story below.
In the Fine Arts major, you’ll study with professional working artists who exhibit nationally and internationally.
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About the Curriculum
The curriculum of the Fine Arts Major with an emphasis in Painting is based on a framework of research, studio experimentation, artistic invention and daily practice. Personal vision and artistic innovation anchor the development of work for significant cultural contributions and dialogue, gallery and museum exhibitions, and creating work for diverse communities and public spaces. To that end, you will be given assignments designed to develop conceptual skills and become proficient in the necessary processes and techniques appropriate to your artistic vision and intention.
Students who complete the Fine Arts Major with an emphasis in Painting will
- demonstrate independent, creative problem-solving and original thinking through the development of a distinct and personal approach to art-making informed by contemporary issues and historical precedents.
- demonstrate critical and conceptual development through research and analysis, applying readings, theories and methodologies toward the production of critically informed artworks.
- acquire and demonstrate the professional skills needed to be successful as practicing artists, entrepreneurs and productive citizens, including further study at the graduate level.
- effectively communicate, orally and in writing, the thoughts behind their choices and decisions concerning content and strategies.
- demonstrate proficiency in a number of advanced techniques in individual studio practice, including a deep familiarity with materials and processes
* At this level, the Painting emphasis includes courses like Painting Materials and Processes.
** The digital requirement includes courses like Intro to 2-D Computer Animation, 3-D Computer Modeling and Electronic Media/Production.
*** At this level, the Painting emphasis includes courses like Painting Strategies.
† At this level, the Painting emphasis includes courses like Advanced Studio Practice.
UArts Painting + Drawing alumni are carving out successful and fulfilling careers in their specific disciplines and across many creative fields.
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BFA '13 (Painting)
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