Undergraduate - University of Houston
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  • Art History

    Beginning with a visual object and its historical context, Art History is an inherently interdisciplinary field that also draws on the rich intellectual traditions of anthropology, literary theory, philosophy, linguistics, psychology, and history for interpretation. Art history was established as an academic discipline in Europe and the U.S. in the nineteenth century. Art historians work in both universities and museums and typically study art in its broader cultural and intellectual context.
  • Graphic Design

    Students in the Graphic Design program at the University of Houston build their knowledge of graphic design through a diverse curriculum, which includes course work in design history, theory, methods, and practice. Research and concept development are integral to this curriculum, as it investigates contemporary culture and emergent communication media.
  • Photography/Digital Media

    PDM students develop their artistic identities supported by a solid grounding in technical, historical, and critical approaches to studio practice. Classroom technical instruction focuses on a thorough study of digital photography and video art, while also offering studio lighting, historic photographic techniques and large format photography. Students engage in historical and theoretical studies, and an examination of current practices in lens-based media. Through the PDM curriculum, students remain adaptable to the quickly changing media environment.
  • Painting

    Painting is both a rich and formidable tradition that is steeped in history, and an evolving, expansive and dynamic field of activity. We encourage permeability within and outside of our discipline to remain responsive not only to paintings' venerable traditions, but also to its increasing hybridity and ongoing redefinitions. The diverse practice within our program mirrors both the definition of what painting "is" and what it can be. Our approach is resolutely pluralistic.
  • Sculpture

    The Sculpture Program is an open laboratory for the investigation and manipulation of the world around us. The exploration begins with the physical world of objects and materials and extends through the conceptual realm of ideas and cultural dialogue. An inter-disciplinary approach allows for all forms of creative expression and encourages collaboration and hybridization in the practice of art. A well-equipped facility, a diverse faculty of reputable artists, an active visiting artist program and strong connections with Houston's vibrant art community provide a lens into the world of contemporary sculpture.
  • Minors

    Students have an opportunity to study in the School of Art by electing one of our minors as their secondary academic discipline. The School of Art offers minors in Art History, Studio Arts, Art Education and Interdisciplinary Art. Often Studio Art Majors (BAs and BFAs) will Minor in Art History and vice -a-versa. This an excellent way to engage with both the scholarly and studio programs in the School of Art.

The Bachelor of Fine Arts degree offers majors in graphic design, painting, photography/digital media and sculpture, and the latitude to work across disciplines through a broad range of related arts and art history courses. The program prepares students with the technical, critical and analytical skills necessary for creative professional practice.

The BFA program follows this progression:  

  • fundamentals studio courses  
  • intermediate studio courses
  • major-specific competitive portfolio reviews; once accepted into a major, a student advances to:  
  • final semesters of major course work at the junior and senior levels

The Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History offers students the opportunity to study art historical trends from ancient times to the present, in both Western and non-Western cultures. This degree requires 36 hours of art history, in addition to the University and College requirements. Students also study other fields in the college such as history and anthropology to complement their art history research.

The Bachelor of Arts degree in Art  is the curriculum for students who wish to combine a broad-based liberal arts education with an expanded study of contemporary studio art practices. Students will experience the visual arts through a variety of disciplines, approaches, and tools, gaining the skills and languages to extend the possibilities of visual expression. The study of art history, criticism and theory will complement studio work by providing the contexts for historical and contemporary art production. Because it is a BA degree, students study foreign language and take a variety of courses from departments through the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. Fulfilling a minor program is a popular option and gives the student the opportunity to pursue a field of individual interest.

Studying in Houston

The Houston community is a rich environment in which to study art and art history. Its large and diverse range of art collections include, among others, the renowned Museum of Fine Arts and its branches in decorative arts, the Museum of Printing History and the Menil Collection, which have permanent collections. The Contemporary Arts Museums and the Center for Contemporary Craft, as well as many alternative art spaces and galleries focus on traveling exhibitions. Art History students are encouraged to avail themselves of these collections for coursework, internships, and general self-enrichment.


Image Credit, Top: Patrick Hubbard.