The Visual Arts are a prominent aspect of the culture here at Notre Dame and students have the opportunity to invest in the study of art in each of their four years. In 9th grade students take Introduction to Art, a half year course where they engage in foundational, skill-building instruction with the integration of projects that celebrate the history of art and encourage them to utilize meaningful visual arts vocabulary in written critiques and discussions. In their Sophomore year, students take Art 10 and learn about the function of visual art in our global society and create works of art that build further on their understanding of the Elements of Art and the Principles of Design. Additionally, students will have the opportunity to prepare written reviews on exhibitions outside of the school setting in New York City’s galleries and museums. Junior year, students are able to apply for Advanced Placement Art History, a college level course that requires students to think critically about art and culture. The goal of this course is to engage with the visual world and become confident in providing insight on any piece of art, and to become participants in an ongoing global discourse. Senior year, students may apply for Advanced Placement 2-D Design (known here at ND as AP Studio Art). This is a college level course that asks students to investigate aspects of the AP portfolio, and to develop meaningful personal content initially through teacher generated assignments and then the creation of their own body of work. Art also plays a role in different events and clubs within the ND community and students receive assistance towards the pursuit arts programming citywide.
The Art Studio at Notre Dame is a generous space situated within a wall of windows that provide beautiful light for creating. In addition, the studio contains an industrial sink, visible storage for supplies and student work, and sturdy tables on castors that allow for reconfiguration of the space so that one class can set up an elaborate still life in the center of the room, while the next has the ability to easily rearrange the space for collaborative work. Down the hall, students have access to a computer lab equipped with a photo printer and Macs that are set up with Photoshop and other creative software. Student Art is always on display throughout the halls and is featured in publications like ND’s beloved literary magazine, Conversatio.
- AP Studio Art (12th Grade)
AP Studio Art is a college level art course that requires a high level of commitment in and outside of class. Students are required to investigate aspects of the AP portfolio, which include high quality Selected Works and a Sustained Investigation topic of the artist’s choosing. In order to help students develop their content we will first start with teacher generated assignments, and then second semester students will create their own body of work. Students will need to produce at least twenty-four works of art before the AP deadline in May. Over the duration of the course, students will read art essays, write art essays, visit museums, and attend open studio events. This course is rigorous and demands a great deal of preparation before entering class. Students must have previously taken art courses, be familiar with art history, and will have completed a summer assignment before the start of school. Acceptance to this course requires a written application and sample artworks.
- AP Art History (11th Grade)
AP Art History is a college level course that requires students to think critically about history and visual culture. Students will experience art and architecture from Global Prehistory to the Present, and from cultures around the world. Art history is a constantly changing, dynamic field of study that is open to discussion and exists within an ongoing global discourse. The goal of this course is to learn to engage with and read the visual world and become confident in providing insight on any piece of art, whether a student has seen it before or not.
- Intermediate Art 10 (10th Grade)
Intermediate Art is a yearlong course offered to 10th grade students interested in pursuing a greater understanding of art. This course offers students the opportunity to study art from a variety of perspectives. Students will learn about dynamic visual artists from around the world and create works of art that build on their understanding of the Elements of Art and the Principles of Design. Students will build a greater art history and studio art vocabulary that will enhance their understanding of art and its process. Students will have the opportunity to be involved in group, individual, and written critiques, and will prepare written reviews on exhibitions outside of the school setting in New York City’s excellent galleries and museums.
- Introduction to Art (9th Grade)
Introduction to Art a half year course where students engage in skill-building instruction with the integration of projects that celebrate the history of art beyond the Western tradition and encourage them to utilize meaningful visual arts vocabulary in written critiques and discussions. Students will have access to materials ranging from acrylic paint to 3-d processes and will use experimentation and the Elements of Art and Principles of Design as access points towards creative expression.