Art

Overview

Letter from the Chair

As a performance artist interested in crossing borders and blurring lines, I treasured the opportunity to study along side individuals of all cultures and artistic disciplines. Cornish has provided a space in which this cross contamination of fields can occur – an aesthetic and performative pollution creating a new understanding of beauty. Cornish has, time and again, rewarded this spirit of experimentation and risk taking.  Reilly Sinanan

The  Art community at Cornish actively promotes the creative environment and the intellectual context for artistic experimentation and risk taking. Aimed at aspiring artists from a broad range of backgrounds, this program offers a unique interdisciplinary environment where the margins between print, sculpture, moving image, drawing, photography, painting, performance, sound and writing are dissolved in favor of inventive alliances.

You will have the opportunity to work from the depth of your chosen subject area(s), while investigating the interfaces between material, digital, spatial, temporal, and textual media. The spectrum of making through thinking, and thinking through making, is enhanced by this exciting and challenging exchange.

You will be working with a dynamic team of professional faculty, who are established locally, nationally, and internationally as practicing artists, educators, and scholars. Together, we are committed to an integration of practical excellence, academic rigor, and technical flexibility, giving you the skills required to succeed in a time of complexity and convergence. This valuable and memorable time of study will provide the springboard from which you will launch an exciting career with confidence and reflective awareness. 


Curriculum

“It has been a pleasure to watch my daughter develop as an artist during her time at Cornish. She chose to move from her native New York City to attend a school that offered a strong foundation year where she could explore all mediums and venues. As so much work in the contemporary art field today is interdisciplinary, Cornish provides its students the tools to excel in multiple arenas. In addition, studying with students in the performing arts offers opportunities for fine arts majors to expanding their focus into the wide breath of what contemporary artists address today.”  Barry Friedman (NYC Gallerist)

Four Years at a Glance

Year 1: Explore

As a freshman in the Foundations program, you engage in learning to read visual languages and explore art practices through the intersection of studio, critical & contextual studies and humanities & sciences. In this year you will rotate through and explore open access resource labs, learning to situate work “within process” and learning to value process itself as “the work”.

The focus is on building technical, practical, rhetorical, and conceptual skills so that you can broaden your experience, challenge yourself and work outside your comfort zone. Year 1 is a time in which you will expand your awareness, develop experiential knowledge, and start to identify where your interests lie.

Year 2: Know and Understand

In the sophomore year, you will build on your exploratory first year and continue to identify key areas of interest. This is the time when you start to develop agency and ownership of your own artistic choices: media, methodologies, processes, and materials to understand what is means to structure a practice. The acquisition of skills continues within the context of your experimentation. Many students prefer to specialize while others embrace cross-disciplinary approaches. The program enables and supports this diversity.

The contextual, historical, critical, and cultural studies component of your education continues throughout the four years, in the recognition that the line between making and thinking is always permeable.

Year 3: Analyze, Evaluate, Apply

The junior year defines and establishes your emergent practice. You will extend and develop your work through an informed relationship between content, context, and audience. The spectrum of technique, practical application and research is fluid, and you will identify your place within this exchange. This is a time of self-directed practice, inquiry-led research and writing, and the further development of your critical skills.

This is normally the year that students choose to study abroad, compete for participation in the New York Studio Residency Program, or take part in the AICAD Mobility Program.

Year 4: Synthesize and Disseminate

As a senior you will consolidate your learning and experience towards an authored practice concluding with a public outcome at the end of the year. This is the time when you will propose, develop, and realize a body of work, accompanied by critical writing.

You will participate in cross-disciplinary critiques and reviews. Professional practice will be embedded in your studies and you will apply these skills throughout the year, via networking, commissions, self-promotion and related writing. Your time at Cornish culminates in the BFA exhibition, a widely attended event for the Seattle community. This is both a point of departure and commencement.


Degree Requirements

ART MODEL PROGRAM

Model Programs are updated at the beginning of each academic year. This PDF contains the current year’s model programs for this program. Students should refer to the model program that was in effect for the year and term of their entrance to Cornish. View archived catalogs and model programs.

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Course Descriptions

Course descriptions are updated at the beginning of each academic year. This PDF contains the current year’s course descriptions for this program. For previous years, please refer to the online archive of catalogs.

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Laptop Policy

All incoming students (Fall 2015) will need to purchase a laptop and software before the start of classes. Provided below is a list for you to make sure you have everything you will need.

In order to redeem the education discount you can either take your Cornish Student ID with you to an Apple store, or you can purchase directly through the Apple online store.

If you have already invested in a different system or have any questions please do not hesitate to contact the Resource Lab Manager.

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Learning Outcomes

The BFA at Cornish is designed to give students the diverse and flexible skills necessary to open up potential directions for a future life in fine art, which could include: research at the postgraduate level (MFA); or becoming a professional artist, filmmaker, project manager, studio manager, fabricator, animator, curator, writer, printer, photographer, arts administrator, publisher, educator, technical instructor, preparator, producer, picture/archive researcher; working in public art contexts, museums, or working in the areas of digital imaging, production and post-production, web authoring, new media production ... just to name a few.

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Faculty & Staff

Facilities

3D Fabrication Lab

The 3D Fabrication Resource Area helps students progress from sketchbook to actual object. Makers from any department are able to access our well equipped lab to build their skills in woodworking, soft fabrication processes like sewing, metal welding and fabrication, and mold making for cold casting.

Students can use the 3D Fabrication area to build stretcher bars for paintings, or to make a larger than life sculpture. Our available tools range from handheld wood carving tools to a Makerbot 3D printer. The wood lab support ranges from structure building to exploration of demanding techniques, and our metals area supports MIG, TIG, arc, and gas welding, with a variety of tools to cut, bend and manipulate metal stock. A wide variety of mold making processes are available for experimentation and skill building in making multiples in plasters, hybrid materials, and plastics

Digital and Analog Equipment Library

The equipment library will provide you with a wide range of digital and analog equipment including still and video cameras, lights, microphones, projectors and digital displays.

Digital Labs

Our digital computer labs will give you access to a range of creative software including Adobe Creative Cloud. In these labs, you will be able to take advantage of increased memory and processing power in order to work on larger and more complex digital projects.

Materials Lab

This room can be used for working with stronger solvents and painting mediums than the student collective studio spaces in Centennial Lab and the Commons.  It is also an ideal place to prime several canvasses at once with ample room to spread out.  Students have access to a wide array of drawing and painting mediums to experiment with different ways of working.  

The Materials Lab has a stock of acrylic and oil mediums, topcoats and grounds. Drawing media include charcoal, pastels, oil bars, water-soluble crayons, charcoal and graphite powder, inks, as well as fixatives to finish pieces.  Hand tools and an array of fasteners are on hand to figure out how best to display finished artwork.

Photomedia Lab

In the Photomedia lab, you can explore black and white analogue photography as well as digital photography. You will be able to work with digital image manipulation and large format printing and can venture into Super 8mm film processing.

Print & Book Arts Lab

The Cornish Print Art Lab is comprised of several lab spaces prepared for both traditional and contemporary practices. The Lab houses it's own darkroom equipped with a Mercury Vapor overhead exposure unit used for solar plate, photo polymer plate, and other experimental photo print processes. Adjacent to the darkroom is a computer station, which operates a large format vinyl plotter that converts vector graphics into intricate works of cut vinyl. The Silkscreen lab has over 40 high mesh aluminum screens, and a state of the art vacuum exposure unit.

There is a pair of twin Little John presses in the central lab used exclusively for intaglio printing, as well as a lithography press for aluminum plate lithography, and a large Takach press used for relief, monotype, and large intaglio printmaking. A special feature of the lab is a traditional Japanese papermaking vat called a Sukifuni used to make delicate handmade paper.
 
Book Arts contains five working antique letterpresses, and a large catalog of both wood and lead type. Students have the opportunity to hand set type, create bindings with multiple signatures, and create professional quality handmade books.

Resources

External Opportunities

External and community engagement is a priority and embedded in the program. We support study abroad, residencies, collaborative projects, commissions, exhibitions, internships and competitions. One notable example is the Loan Exhibition Partnership established in 2005 between the Art Department and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The College has established exciting partnerships to enable you to expand your study experience and extend your practice.

Visiting Artists, Master Classes & Residencies

The Art Program at Cornish College of the Arts and the Henry Art Gallery (http://www.henryart.org/) have formed an exciting partnership to present INCITE•INSIGHT, a series of public lectures and performances that promote engagement with contemporary art practice. Invited artists, curators, and thinkers visit Seattle for short residencies to interact withstudents through group conversation and studio visits. The series emphasizes and advances the long-standing commitment that Cornish and the Henry share in support of meaningful dialogues around the social and cultural impact of art and the ideas of our time. 

The Art program works closely with the Pilchuck Glass School and we are fortunate to have the Pilchuck Emerging Artists in Residence visit each fall to lecture on their previous works, processes, and current explorations. 

Galleries

The Main Gallery has been a significant feature and resource at Cornish for many years, and has hosted the work of many renowned artists. Alongside the main space, students are invited to submit proposals to create work for The Collaboratory, a project space located in the gallery that is dedicated to interdisciplinary explorations across the College. This represents the very best of Cornish’s unique identity as one of only three colleges in North America that offers both the visual and performing arts.

Student agency is at the heart of Cornish. The Closet Gallery is a student run exhibition space. It is for the students, by the students. Our goal is to provide a professional environment for students to showcase their work while pursuing their degree.

The Visiting Artist Program is a key feature of your study and provides the context to meet artists working professionally. You will also have access to the annual lecture series linked with the Neddy Artist Awards.

Numerous resources are open to Cornish students such as the Mary Alice Cooley Print Collection, and the Henry Art Gallery Collections at the University of Washington.

News

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May 25, 2016

Cornish Challeged To Meet $35,000 Match For Visiting Artists

Cornish's supporters have been challenged and we need your help to spread the word! Three generous donors are matching up to $35,000 in contributions in the Cornish's new Visiting Artists Fund. You can help the long-standing Cornish guest artists series continue a storied tradition that brings amazing guest artists to our students for in-depth and up-close interactions through master classes, residencies, workshops, and presentations.

Alumni and Cornish supporters are spreading the word that a donation to the Visiting Artist Fund giv...

ART DANCE DESIGN FILM+MEDIA MUSIC PERFORMANCE PRODUCTION THEATER

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May 17, 2016

Commencement 2016 Welcome: Be Thoroughly Outrageous

In her welcome to the graduating Class of 2016, Dr. Nancy J. Uscher, President of Cornish College of the Arts, exorted them to not only be ready for what comes next, but to meet it head on, to be thoroughly outrageous in their approach to the arts and to life.

Delivered May 14, 2016 Commencement 2016 Welcome by President Nancy J Uscher, PhD. This is a mome...

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May 5, 2016

BFA EXPO 16, Microsoft HoloLens Exhibit, Thrill Viewers

Every year it's a circus at Cornish — the kind you want to see — as graduating seniors exhibit their BFA work at EXPO. This year, the exhibition opening featured a special treat, a collaboration between students and Microsoft.

​EXPO 16: Art & Design Exhibition of BFA students in the visual arts at Cornish was, as usual,...

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March 23, 2016

Tony Award Winner Ben Vereen To Give 2016 Commencement Address

Broadway legend Ben Vereen will give the Commenncement address as part of the 2016 graduation ceremonies at McCaw Hall on May 14.

Cornish College of the Arts President Nancy J. Uscher announced today that Honorary Doctorate degree...

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February 20, 2016

Kronos Quartet Residency Begins This Month

As previously announced, the Kronos Quartet will be in Seattle from February 20 to 24. They will lead a two-day interdisciplinary residency on campus with Cornish students that extends well outside of the music department. There will also be a number of free off-site events for students.

Cornish students from all departments will have an opportunity to interact with the famed Kronos Qua...

The Kronos Quartet—David Harrington, John Sherba (violins), Hank Dutt (viola), and Sunny Yang (cel...

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February 10, 2016

The Three Yells: Her Name Is Isaac

Aided by a Cornish Playhouse Arts Incubator Residency, Veronica Lee-Baik brings her finished multidisciplinary piece back to campus. At a time when people are tweeting #AskHerMore, Lee-Baik tackles gender and pay equity through a distinctly Asian lens. Blending modern technology with modern dance, she creates a thought-provoking work guaranteed to spark interesting discussions afterward.

The Three Yells: Her Name Is Isaac returns to Cornish this week. This multidisciplinary dance work d...

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February 7, 2016

StuART Kicks Off Cornish Presents’ Spring Season

Cornish Presents' spring season brings master musicians and multidisciplinary programs to campus. Many programs provide students with additional opportunities to perform with major artists in their field.

Cornish College of the Arts’ visiting and resident artists series “Cornish Presents” opened it...

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January 5, 2016

Cornish’s Impact on Visual and Performing Arts Explored

The centennial of Cornish's founding continues to be a cause for celebration. With "Looking Back, Moving Forward: A Centennial Tribute to Nellie Cornish and Cornish College of the Arts," the brand new Cascadia Art Museum will be bringing together an extraordinary collection of art and artifacts from the early years of the College.

​Cornish's centennial year has just concluded at the College, but at Cascadia Art Museum, things a...

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December 4, 2015

President Uscher Announces She Will Leave In July 2016

The Cornish community learned yesterday that Dr. Nancy J. Uscher will not seek to renew her contract when it ends in July 2016. Dr. Uscher announced her decision yesterday to allow for an orderly transition. During her five years at Cornish, Dr. Uscher has overseen the building of Cornish Commons, the establishment of the film/media program, the beginning of online courses, and several more projects intended to last well into Cornish's second century.

President Nancy J. Uscher announced to faculty, staff, and students yesterday that she will leave he...

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November 18, 2015

Cornish’s Second Century Starts With Worldwide Classes

Cornish’s second century began with the college’s first massive online open course hitting a top ten list in November. The same week, the college offered its first music master class via Google Hangouts, bringing composter/pianist Yitzhak Yedid in Australia together with students at PONCHO in Kerry Hall.

As Cornish began its second century this month, two of its global offerings let people around the wo...