Art, Film, and Visual Studies

Brief Description of Concentration

afvsThe concentration in Art, Film, and Visual Studies enables students to develop skills in the practice and the critical study of the visual arts. It includes photography, filmmaking, animation, video art, painting, drawing, printmaking and sculpture, as well as film and visual studies, critical theory, and the study of the built environment. The department has a strong commitment to fostering dialogue among makers, critics, and theorists.

Learning Objectives

In Studio Art and Film/Video Production, concentrators work toward developing confidence and fluency in a chosen area of artistic production while also exploring a variety of other practices. In Film and Visual Studies, concentrators pursue interdisciplinary approaches to the theory and history of images, space, art, and media. In all areas, AFVS concentrators work closely with faculty, mostly in studios and small seminars, to gain understanding through both study and practice.  

Gateway Courses

  • Freshman Seminar 33O: Animation—Getting your Hands on Time [counts as an elective course in AFVS]
  • General Education 1012 The Art and Politics of Propaganda: The Nazis and Their Legacy [counts as a course in AFVS]
  • General Education 1072: Video: The Practice of Seeing [counts as a course in AFVS]
  • General Education 1114: Painting’s Doubt [counts as a course in AFVS] 
  • AFVS 10: Indelible, Irrepressible: Drawing Course 
  • AFVS 12: Drawing 1 – Drawing as Visual Language 
  • AFVS 14: Making Things (Breaking Things)
  • AFVS 15AR: Silkscreen 
  • AFVS 24: Painting, Smoking, Eating 
  • AFVS 35: Building Thought: Sculpture Course
  • AFVS 40H: Introduction to Still Photography 
  • AFVS 41K: Introduction to Still Photography 
  • AFVS 51A: Introduction to Documentary Production: The Camera Stylo
  • AFVS 52: Introduction to Nonfiction Videomaking
  • AFVS 53AR: Fundamentals of Animation 
  • AFVS 58T: A Video Toolbox 
  • AFVS 59: Experimental Animation
  • AFVS 65: Photographic/Cinematic: Introduction to Lens-based Practices
  • AFVS 70: The Art of Film 
  • AFVS 76:  The Language of Modern Art  


AFVS alumni put their visual skills to work as artists, filmmakers, gallerists, educators, writers, and film and television industry executives. Some pursue further graduate studies in business, law, and medicine. 
Most go on to work in explicitly visual fields. AFVS graduates have become principals in design and creative industries; have won Academy Awards as well as top prizes at the Locarno, Sundance, and Tribeca Film Festivals, and have had their work exhibited in some of the world’s most prestigious venues.