Visual Arts Undergraduate Major

Download the Spring 2024 Undergraduate Visual Arts Schedule


Registered Students: If you are registered for a Visual Arts class, please note you must attend the first two days of class to retain your position.  Due to the limited size of our classes and often high demand, you will lose your place in the class and be replaced if you are not present and on time the first two days.

Students unable to Register Online:  If the class you are interested in is full on-line or if for any reason you cannot register on-line, please add yourself to the waitlist and attend the first day of class. We encourage students who are interested in any of our Visual Arts Undergraduate Courses to attend the first day of class as there are often places available.


About the Undergraduate Major in Visual Arts

The intent of our interdisciplinary program is to enable Visual Arts students to explore every conceivable form of visual expression. Students majoring in Visual Arts at Columbia University are provided with instruction in the tools and techniques necessary for the production of art while enhancing their creative, critical and analytic voice. Whether choosing to concentrate in Drawing, Painting, Sculpture, Photography, Printmaking or Video, or embracing an artistic practice that incorporates any combination of these disciplines, the emphasis is on developing a student's personal vision.

Our majors benefit from working under the guidance of a distinguished full-time and adjunct faculty, all of whom are active visual artists with national and international reputations. Some of the key components of our program include Seminar in Contemporary Art Practice, Senior Thesis, art studios for majors, Art History, and graduate student mentors. These hallmarks of our program introduce students to the various pertinent dialogues within contemporary art, provide them with individual or shared space to develop their own studio practice, engage in specific art historical studies, foster mentor relationships with candidates from our renowned MFA program and offer opportunities to exhibit their work in the final semester of Senior Thesis.

A Major in Visual Arts from Columbia will provide a comprehensive and expansive foundation for artists in pursuit of an MFA, an exciting career in the arts, and all other fields requiring a flexible and creative outlook.

For more information, please visit the Columbia College Visual Arts Bulletin.

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The Photography Area

The Photography Area is located in 212 Dodge Hall and can either be reached through the doorway off of College Walk or by taking the stairs at the back of the LeRoy Neiman Gallery (310 Dodge Hall). The facilities include a gang black and white darkroom with 15 enlargers, black and white film processing area, and a photo finishing area. The Photography Classrooms are located on the first floor of Watson Hall (612 W.115th Street). Lab fees cover the cost of all chemistry and darkroom facilities.