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Enhance Your Education

Distinctive Programs in Art

Knox offers concentrations in ceramics, painting, printmaking, sculpture, and photography.There are ample opportunities to enhance your studies through direct encounters with original, high-quality works of art. Trips to Chicago, St. Louis, and New York give you the chance to meet with artists and visit museums, galleries, and architectural monuments. Artists who visit campus regularly speak with classes and meet with individual students, often combined with an exhibition of the artist's work.

Knox also offers art students the chance to participate in independent research, off-campus study, and internships, which offer the opportunity to apply your skills in real world situations.

Student Research and Creative Projects
Knox is a leader in promoting top-notch undergraduate research. In fact, more than 90% of all Knox students complete an independent research or creative project by the time they graduate. Many students' projects are supported by an unusually rich array of Knox College funding programs that together provide students more than $200,000 each year in support of their work. These sources include: Richter Memorial Scholars Program, Ford Foundation Research Fellows Program, Ronald E. McNair Fellows Program, and departmentally supported independent studies. In addition, special fellowships awarded to Knox through national competitions and through the research grants of Knox faculty make Knox a leader in promoting top-notch undergraduate research. Each year, many art students receive grants to pursue their own creative work during Open Studio, honors projects, and independent studies. Examples of recent research projects include:

  • "Non-Perceptual Painting," Mercedes Klein, '07, art and gender & women's studies major.
  • "Continuing Painting and Mixed Media," Amy Daws, '06, art major, independent study/senior research funded by Richter program.
  • "Visual Music (Large Scale Drawings)," Priscila De Lima, '06, art major, independent study/senior research funded by Richter program.
  • "Observational Painting Study," Matthew Katz, '06, art and art history major.

College Honors
Outstanding students may elect to undertake College Honors in their senior year, carrying out an advanced research project presented and defended to a faculty committee that includes a distinguished outside examiner. Examples of recent Honors projects include:

  • Studio Art: "Analysis of Perception: Color Theory and Space, With an Emphasis on the Role of Art History in Painting," Carrie Anne Ramig, '09.
  • Studio Art: "Analysis of Media: Matter, Spirit, and Intellect," Priscila De Lima, '05.
  • Studio Art: "Silent Scream," Jennifer Cooper, '04.
  • Multimedia (English, Japanese, Art, Music, Theatre): "Between Creation and Translation: Concept to Story, English to Japanese, Story to Animation," Jasmine Jobe, '04.

Off-Campus Opportunities
Knox offers you plenty of opportunities to begin exploring the world while still a student. Almost 50% of Knox students participate in off-campus study and consider their studies abroad to be the highlight of their college experiences. Knox offers several off-campus study opportunities, both in the United States and abroad, that provide valuable experiences for students interested in art and art history.

  • Chicago Program in the Arts gives you intensive exposure to the dynamic arts scene in this major American city. Your time in the program will include an internship with a gallery, an arts service organization or an individual artist, an interdisciplinary core course, specialized topic courses and visits to a wide variety of cultural events.
  • Arts of London and Florence program immerses you in the arts, drawing upon the cultural resources of the two cities to explore the historical and contemporary richness of Western culture. Courses in art, architecture, drama, Italian language and history will be complemented by trips to museums, galleries and the theater, as well as discussions with local scholars.
  • Florence Semester includes living with an Italian family, in a city that provides the perfect environment for study of Renaissance art. Your understanding of the richness of its artistic and cultural heritage will be facilitated by Italian language instruction and courses providing a broad perspective on Italian contributions to world civilization. Course work will be supplemented by field trips to museums and galleries and to other Italian cities.
  • Knox in New York is a unique course culminating in a two week visit to New York City for an intensive exposure to New York's art culture. In addition to their immersion in museums and galleries, students take an intensive drawing course through New York Studio School, visit artists' studios, and attend lectures.

The Knox Studio Art Major promotes the distinct benefits of studying art in an environment that reflects the values and goals of a liberal arts education.The Art Department also helps place students in summer arts programs to expand and deepen their art education. Among the programs students regularly attend are the Chautauqua Institution in New York and the Yale Norfolk Summer Arts Program in Oxbow, Michigan.

On-Campus Events
There is no substitute for experiencing art in person, so each year the Art Department hosts exhibits and lectures by four visiting artists. The department believes it's important to represent the breadth of contemporary art, and make art accessible to the Knox and Galesburg communities. Visiting artists frequently participate in critiques with advanced students.

The annual Al Young Art Exhibition awards endowed prizes in drawing, painting, printmaking, photography, ceramics and sculpture. Each year, a significant artist is brought to campus to judge the Al Young competition and to provide individual critiques for the student competitors. Recent judges have included John Walker (Yale University), Judy Koon (School of the Art Institute, Chicago), Stanley Lewis (American University), Bernard Chaet (Yale) and Patti Warashina (University of Washington).

Open Studio
The culminating experience of the Studio Art Major, Open Studio allows seniors to intensively pursue their work in a challenging and supportive creative community. Taken as their only course during winter term, senior art majors immerse themselves in the studio while spending six hours each week in critical exchanges with a team of faculty members. Weekly meetings with a faculty mentor, studio exercises, and workshops all promote the exploration of new ideas, techniques, and creative directions. For many, Open Studio is the pivotal experience in their transformation from students to artists.

As a student of art at Knox, you'll have the opportunity to expand your education -- to get that valuable experience you hear so much about -- by completing an internship. Internships provide an opportunity to explore and test career options, to gain experiences and skills needed to succeed as a professional, to build a resume, to network and make critical connections, and to experience a work environment. More and more employers are looking for college graduates with career-related experience. Knox's Center for Career and Pre-Professional Development specializes in helping you find an internship that best matches your goals and interests. Art students have been involved in a wide range of internships including working with: a New York assistant, art museums and galleries, and children's and community art programs. Recent internships by art students include:

  • Graphic Design Intern, Illinois Central College, Peoria, Illinois. Priscilla De Lima, '05, studio art major.
  • Summer Project Intern, Global Project, Moscow, Russia. Dana Johnson, '06, educational studies and art major.

Each fall the Box hosts an annual 10 week artist-in-residence, who produces and exhibits a body of work. Resident artists also mentor advanced students and interact with the Galesburg community. During the fall of 2012 an artist-in-residence will be working with students to create an 80-foot-long mural in downtown Galesburg.

The Art Department's off-campus gallery and studio space, the Box, is located in a refurbished industrial building in downtown Galesburg. With 15-foot ceilings and 2,000 feet of exhibit space, the Box hosts a variety of exhibits and events throughout the year. The Box also serves as a teaching gallery where students install their work to get experience planning and hanging exhibitions. The Box provides studio and installation space for large, experimental, and site-specific works.

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