Lisa Claypool

East Asian art and theory.

William J. Diebold

Ancient and medieval art, manuscript illumination, art historical method.

Dana Katz

Renaissance, Baroque and Colonial Latin American art and architecture; Jews and the visual arts; methodology of art history.

Michael Knutson

Painting, drawing, printmaking.

Akihiko Miyoshi

Photography and digital media.

Geraldine Ondrizek

Sculpture, installation, drawing, artists’ books.

James A. van Dyke

Nineteenth- and twentieth-century art and theory.

Art majors at Reed study both art history and studio art, which the department sees as complementary disciplines. Introductory courses provide a foundation and an intensive experience in the practice of art or creative scholarship for both prospective majors and non-majors.

In studio art, the 200-level courses stress formal, technical, and conceptual concepts in a broad range of projects. More independent exploration, which might involve further work in the traditional core media or branch off into more experimental forms, is encouraged in 300-level courses. In art history, the introductory course introduces students to the discipline of art history through a detailed, methodologically based examination of a particular body of art. Advanced courses acquaint students with selected periods and movements in art and in the various methods of art historical research, as students learn to refine their powers of critical observation by looking, talking, and writing at length about individual works of art.

The advanced student may undertake independent work in areas of special interest. In recent years majors have often supplemented their program at Reed with a semester or year of studio art, architecture, museum training, or art history research at cooperating institutions in Europe, the United States, or elsewhere, as well as with summer internships at major museums.

Art history facilities include a large conference room equipped with slide and digital projection equipment, a visual resources collection, a secure study room where students can examine books and works from the collection, and a first-class gallery. These offer students the possibility of working closely with original objects.

In 2001 the college extensively expanded and renovated the studio arts building. The renovation included a new darkroom, a digital media room, a gallery and critique room, a projection room, a new faculty office and studio, senior studios, expanded classroom space, and a lounge.

The Douglas F. Cooley Memorial Art Gallery shows past and contemporary art of national and international stature through traveling exhibitions and those curated by the gallery director and faculty members. These exhibitions connect with related courses in the visual arts and humanities at Reed, and are accompanied by lectures and discussions open to the Portland community. Exhibits in 2005-06 included Snaphot Chronicles, American vernacular photo albums from 1898 to 1935; the work of Mona Hatoum, a Stephen E. Ostrow Distinguished Visitor in the Arts; and a two-part exhibition of recent American and European painting, drawing, photography and multi-media art from the Ovitz Family Collection.

Requirements for the Major

For students doing a studio thesis: four units of art history, including Art 201 and at least one course in non-Western art; seven units of studio art, including Art 161; and Art 470. At least one semester of a 300-level studio course should be completed before the thesis year. For students doing an art history thesis: five units of art history, including Art 201, at least one course in non-Western art, and one course at the 400 level; four units of studio art, including Art 161; and Art 470.
No art major, except one who transfers with junior standing, may use more than one unit of studio art and one unit of art history from outside Reed to fulfill departmental requirements.

Interdisciplinary majors are normally allowed to waive two units from the departmental requirement, one each from art history and studio art.

Applicants planning to major in art are not normally considered before successful completion, or reasonable certainty thereof, of Art 161 and 201. Transfers from other colleges, for whom in some cases one of these introductory courses may be waived, are expected to take a comparable amount of course work at Reed (one unit of art history and one unit of studio art) before they can be considered as majors.

Normally, before taking the junior qualifying exam, students should have taken the following courses at Reed (in addition to Art 161 and 201): for students planning a studio art thesis, at least one unit of studio art at the 300 level; for students planning an art history thesis, three units of art history.

Senior Thesis

The senior thesis encourages students to pursue a significant, clearly defined project through individual initiative and independent work, culminating in a unified body of art or historical study.

Pacific Northwest College of Art Program

Reed students are eligible to apply to a joint program with the Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA). The joint program requires five years: the first and second years at Reed, followed by a two-year course of full-time study at PNCA, and a fifth year combining work at both institutions. Graduates of this program receive a bachelor of arts from Reed and a bachelor of fine arts from PNCA.

Students interested in this course of study are strongly advised to meet with the Reed chair of the joint program before the end of their first year. Although application to the program occurs in the fourth semester, it is important that students be aware of the requirement differences for the Reed art and joint program majors. Applicants to the program are recommended by the Reed chair, and acceptance is contingent upon successful completion of at least 16 units of Reed credit, including at least three units of studio art and one unit of art history at Reed.

Art Course Descriptions

Top of Page