Studio Art | College of Arts

Studio Art

Image of Linh Thai installation, Specialized Studio, W16

Studio Art at Guelph

The Studio Art program at Guelph is designed to provide a progressive alternative to existing post secondary programs; one that combines equal strengths in studio practice and its conceptual and critical underpinnings. This approach has had a very positive impact on all graduates by providing them with a substantial working knowledge of both contemporary art history and studio practice, regardless of their career plans.  In fact, our program is designed as a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Studio Art, rather than a Bachelor of Fine Arts. The BA allows students to more easily combine their studies in Studio Art, as Majors or Minors, with major and minor programs of study in a variety of other disciplines. The permutations are endless in terms of building your career path: our graduates are successful contemporary artists, gallerists, teachers, and art therapists, among other things.

Learning Approach

Studio Art combines the best of two worlds, providing a fundamental understanding of art history, theory and criticism with the opportunity to explore a range of media in the studio. You'll learn through lectures and discussions. Diverse audio-visual materials, from digital images to videos and films, will be regular components of most courses.

Studio courses emphasize hands-on experience in art making. You'll develop not only technical and manual skills but also an awareness of historical and contemporary contexts, and formal and expressive strategies.

You'll do much of your learning in the renovated studios and facilities of historic Zavitz Hall and the Alexander Hall. Trips to major collections, galleries and museums will augment your learning experience.

The Major

From printmaking to painting, from photography to experimental studio, through material and digitally-based sculptural practice, the visual arts embody, celebrate and criticize our assumptions and aspirations. Studies in Studio Art at the University of Guelph will enable you to participate in this realm.

Guelph offers a unique learning environment for the study of Studio Art. Our School of Fine Art and Music is the third largest studio program in Ontario, exposing students to a climate of intellectual diversity and tolerance. In the course of your studies, you'll have access to the Gordon Couling Digital Slide Library and the Bachinski/Chu Print Study Collection, which includes examples of original works by such artists as Rembrandt, Matisse, Snow and Colville, and the Art Gallery of Guelph and associated Sculpture Park, one of the most significant university galleries in Canada. The School's noted Visiting Artist Series brings internationally renowned artists to campus each semester, and the annual Shenkman Lecture in Contemporary Art is the capstone of each year.

Our faculty, considered by many to be among the finest in the country, are active practicing artists whose work has been displayed at such prestigious institutions as the National Gallery of Art, Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography, Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Tate Gallery, London. And almost without exception, our faculty members are represented by Canada's leading commercial art galleries.

For information about the Studio Art program, MAJOR and MINOR click here:

PLEASE READ:  An important note about the STUDIO ART MINOR

Students cannot be admitted directly to the Studio Art Minor. The declaration of a Minor can only be made after the completion of the following prerequisites: SART*1050, SART*1060 and one of ARTH*1510 or ARTH*1520. Students who successfully complete these prerequisites with an average of 70% or higher can ask to declare the Studio Art Minor.

Restrictions to SART*1050 and SART*1060 are usually lifted part way through the registration period, once it is clear that Studio Art Majors have had the opportunity to register. Students wanting to pursue the Studio Art Minor can either wait until the restrictions are lifted or contact the Studio Faculty Advisor to inquire about a possible Course Waiver form. SART*1050 and SART*1060 can be taken in any order.  Email:

There are no restrictions for either ARTH*1510 or ARTH*1520.

Note: The number of Minors accepted into the program is contingent upon available space.