The Painting area in Marshall University’s School of Art & Design is firmly based on well-organized practice with inventive use of tradition. The emphasis is on oil painting, but other media are encouraged, including watercolor for the painting majors. Clear guidelines cultivate reflection with intuition and discipline with craft. Additional procedures give the artist true freedom to express anything in color. The individual approach begins to vary as students gain skills and analytical experience. Advanced and graduate painters often discover completely new and unexpected imagery, and with different media. This is one of the strongest aspects of this painting program: the imagery advances independently and becomes unique to each artist.
The young artist must commit to the program. Intense practice and theory, with art history bring knowledge. The result is formidable confidence, which then leads to intelligent exploration. The artist becomes obsessed with producing highly original artwork. The ultimate effect is lifetime dedication to making professional quality paintings.
Oil painting at this facility is completely non-toxic. There are no fumes in the oil painting studios. This program may be one of the only one in the United States that is completely free of volatile organic compounds. (VOCs) It comes from many years of research by the late painting professor Stanley Sporny who developed products and procedures for student and professional use.
Painting is at two locations at Marshall University’s School of Art and Design. The Beginning Painting studio is on the eighth floor of Smith Hall. It has the best view on campus, with excellent light. Enrollment is limited to eighteen students. Advanced and graduate studios are in Old Main. There are between sixteen to eighteen berths, depending on configuration. Individual studio space for undergraduate painters is very unusual. There are six to eight berths in studio 308. Graduate and advanced painters have six to nine berths in studio 304.
The School of Art & Design emphasizes the connection between fundamental art classes and more advanced studies. These foundation classes have many practical and theoretical uses, not only at the undergraduate level but also throughout an artist’s career. Learning about other cultures and the history of art is essential. Knowledge combines with practice to produce richer more sophisticated imagery.