Empower Your Creations

Discover and develop your passion for art with a major or minor in Studio Art. Here, you will study painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture and imaging (photography, video and new media). The major begins with rigorous introductory courses and quickly moves on to more focused intermediate and advanced offerings. Studio Art courses at all levels are designed to help you explore a broad range of concepts, methods and materials while developing individual ideas and a personal voice. Consistent throughout the Studio Art experience is attention to craft, development of a refined understanding of formal relationships, exercise of a rigorous practice of art making, and exposure to a broad range of historical and contemporary examples.

As part of a liberal arts education, Studio Art is one of the few places where you can creatively engage in the development of a visual language. You will be prepared for further study in graduate programs as well as a wide range of careers.

Students often enrich their interests in studio arts with both similar and dissimilar majors and minors, including Economics, Architectural Studies, Writing and Rhetoric, Media and Society and many more.



Student SpotlightClaire Kapitan '24

majors: english, studio art
minor: italian studies 

"My Studio Art courses at HWS have been my favorite because they allow me the freedom to develop and pursue my own creative ideas while also offering intimate mentorship with my professors and peers. I also like how the major requirements have pushed me out of my known discipline—painting—and into classes I never thought I’d be taking like wood cut print and film photography.

I plan to work in a gallery or museum after I graduate and working as a gallery assistant at the Davis Gallery while taking Studio Art courses has allowed me to experience the creating and sharing of art in ways I never had before."


And Research

Studio Art students looking to engage more in their work can study and complete Honors and research projects in their chosen topic with the guidance of a faculty member.

Past examples include:

  • Zoe Bloomfield '22: Envisioning Tourette's with Photography 
    Christine Chin, Adviser 
  • Olivia Davidson '22: Expedited Environment: An Artistic Interpretation of Shipping and its Impacts on the Environment
    Christine Chin, Adviser 
  • Hannah Alice Farrar ’21: Watch Me Lead
    Christine Chin, Adviser
  • Shannon Smith ’20: Exploring and Abstracting Intimacy in the Female Form
    Phillia Yi, Adviser
  • Rio K. Schmidt ’18: Process in the Making: My Cattle, My Prints, Our Life
    Phillia Yi, Adviser


Experiential EducationArt All Around You

Discussing art at the Davis Gallery

Experience awe-inspiring art creations by students, faculty and guest artists at The Davis Gallery inside Houghton House, learn about activist art through the Art & Architecture Lecture Series or attend a paint night at the Intercultural Affairs Center.

At Hobart and William Smith, learning goes beyond textbooks and classrooms. You’ll gain high-impact practical experience that deepens learning and opens doors.




No Borders:Global Education

Learn 3D printing in Germany or develop your photography skills in Hong Kong.

Wherever you go, you’ll apply classroom knowledge, develop cultural understanding and build global connections that expand your personal capacity and sense of purpose.

Hong Kong


Learn fundamentals, techniques and critical analysis of fine art.

ARTS 105 – Color & Composition 

Work through a carefully structured series of problems designed to reveal empirically the nature of color interaction and relatedness and the fundamentals of good visual composition.

ARTS 214 – Metal Sculpture

Explore metal as a creative sculptural medium. 

ARTS 248 – Woodcut Printing

Introduce yourself to the fundamental processes of woodcut printmaking.

Critical Museum Studies

Investigate the histories of practices of museums from a decolonial perspective while building the skills necessary to work in the industry through the Critical Museum Studies minor. You'll get to follow tracks like history museums and art museums and galleries that will allow you to focus on the issues and practices most relevant to the type of cultural space that most interests you. Students in all tracks gain experience with installation techniques, designing, cataloging, collections management, and writing exhibit labels. You'll leave prepared to work in and think critically about a variety of fields.

Art and Architecture Facilities

From a historic mansion to a modern art studio at the Colleges' arts campus, Studio Art students at HWS can take advantage of tremendous spaces to learn, grow and follow their passions. 




Alum ImpactThinking Beyond

Brittany Coburn '17
Sculpture MFA Candidate at Savannah College of Art and Design; Fabricator, Arc Design

During her time as a Studio Art major, Brittany was encouraged to think abstractly, to view things from different perspectives and to give and receive criticism in the most constructive way. These skills, along with following her dream of working in the creative arts, propelled her on the path to graduate school.

Companies That Employ Our graduates

  • Conde Nast
  • DC Moore Gallery
  • Everson Museum
  • KSS Architects
  • Louis Vuitton
  • Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Pratt Institute
  • Quandrangle Group, LLC.
  • Random House Publishing
  • School of the Art Institute of Chicago
  • Smithsonian American Art Museum

universities where our graduates are studying

  • American University
  • Bryn Mawr
  • Nazareth College
  • New York University
  • Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
  • Pratt University
  • Rhode Island School of Design
  • Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Savannah College of Art and Design
  • University of Maryland
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of Washington
  • Virginia Commonwealth University