VCU Bulletins

School of the Arts

Art Foundation Program

Elissa Armstrong

The mission of the Art Foundation Program is to provide an intellectually rigorous, studio-based experience in the fundamental issues of art and design. The program seeks to develop in its students an enthusiasm for their work, a means to reflect analytically and an ability to cultivate skills that will serve throughout their education. The Art Foundation Program seeks to establish connections between programs in art and design and to participate in a larger forum of ideas and concepts relevant to all of the disciplines.

Completion of the Art Foundation Program is a prerequisite for entry into all fine art and design departments: Art Education, Communication Arts, Craft and Material Studies, Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Interior Design, Kinetic Imaging, Painting and Printmaking, Photography and Film, and Sculpture and Extended Media. Art Foundation provides the basic concepts, skills and experience necessary to pursue advanced studio work in each department. Students become affiliated with a major department after the departmental portfolio reviews in the spring semester of the Art Foundation year. At that time the student applies to the department of his or her choice. Department acceptance is competitive and is based on individual student performance and potential in their chosen area.

Transfer students in art and design are also required to complete the Art Foundation Program but may be awarded transfer credits based on a case-by-case basis.

Requirements for Art Foundation Program

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this program, students will know and know how to do the following:

  • Understand the fundamentals of art and design
  • Introduce issues of contemporary art and design
  • Peer and self-critique
  • Introduce and encourage opportunities available throughout the university, city, state and abroad
  • Develop a body of work for major department review
  • A wide variety of approaches to working and making
Art Foundation Program Credits
Art Foundation studios  
ARTF 131 Drawing Studio 3
ARTF 132 Surface Research 3
ARTF 133 Space Research 3
ARTF 134 Time Studio 3
ARTF 139 Project 2
Art history component  
ARTH 103, 104 Survey of Western Art 6

Click here to download a sample outline. [PDF]


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Last update: 10/11/2013

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