College of Arts and Sciences

Department of Fine Arts


The arts are vital to cultural expression; they enrich our lives while challenging and broadening our views of the world. The Fine Arts faculty fosters an educational environment that encourages creativity, individual growth, and meaningful expression. We provide interdisciplinary approaches to the practice of art and the study of visual culture. At WSU students have the opportunity to put their ideas into form while becoming visually literate, historically grounded, and familiar with the diversity of arts and cultures worldwide.

Degrees offered: minor, B.A., B.F.A., M.F.A.

Fine Arts at a Glance


The fine arts program fosters student's abilities in a number of mediums, enabling them to become visually literate and responsive to the world in which they live. Students develop creative problem solving skills where the integration of cultural, historical, and conceptual issues are examined. Students are encouraged to develop their own personal ideas and aesthetic expression in light of contemporary issues and practices.

Areas of Study:

Students begin their studies in fine arts with courses introducing them to a range of materials and ideas in two and three-dimensional media as well as the history of art in western and non-western civilizations. Students then choose to focus in one or more of the following areas of study: Art History, Ceramics, Digital Media, Painting & Drawing, Photography, Printmaking, or Sculpture.


The Fine Arts Studio Faculty is made up of practicing artists who exhibit regularly in the Northwest, nationally and internationally. By working alongside professional artists, students learn first hand about developing a career in the arts. The WSU Art History Faculty specializes in Ancient Rome, Renaissance, Twentieth Century Visual Culture, and the Arts of Native North America and the Pacific Islands. They recognize that art history is an interdisciplinary field and encourage students to investigate a wide range of issues including aesthetics, material practices, and social conditions surrounding the arts.


Ceramics offers a comprehensive facility with special kilns for salt and raku firing. Two digital media labs support work in interactive and web-based media, video, digital imaging and photography. The photography area has traditional color and black and white facilities and utilizes the digital media and printing facilities. The printmaking studios provide a facility for explorations in lithography, screenprinting and digital photo-printmaking processes. Sculpture houses equipment for wood and metal fabrication and a facility for bronze casting. The individual studio spaces are awarded competitively each year to undergraduate students.

Galleries & Visiting Artists:

The Forst Endowed Fine Arts Visiting Artist Program brings students face to face with artists from the Northwest and beyond. They give public lectures and conduct seminars discussing career activities and their work. MFA and BFA students have the opportunity to meet one on one with these nationally recognized artists. Often, visiting artists will install an exhibition or create an installation in our Gallery 2, a professional gallery space within the Fine Arts Center. Students have the opportunity to collaborate with or assist visiting artists on these exhibits or installations. Additional exhibitions are scheduled in Gallery 2 throughout the year, as well as those of our MFA graduate students at the end of their first year.

The Gallery 2 exhibition schedule and Visiting Artist Program also reflect our commitment to issues of diversity, gender and contemporary practices in the visual arts. Exhibiting artists represent different cultures and artistic points of view.
Visitors have included: Janine Antoni, Claudia Bernardi, Sidney Chafetz, Enrique Chagoya, Elizabeth Dove, Joe Federsen, Juan Granados, Andrei Kamalov, Suzanne Lacey, Ake Lianga, Rick Lowe, Judy Moonelis, Anne Perrigo, Tim Rollins, Ji Rouxiao, Miriam Schapiro, Carol Silverstein, Buster Simpson, Julio Sims, Kiki Smith, Mierle Ukeles, and Bill Viola.

Gallery 3 is managed by undergraduate students providing special curatorial and exhibition opportunities.

Located in the Fine Arts Center, the Museum of Art.WSU provides students with direct access to exhibitions of work by regional, national, and international artists.

Department of Fine Arts Contact Info

Thom Brown

Department Chair
Professor: Painting and Drawing
T: (509) 335-8686
Office: Room 7023


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Fine Arts - Office 5072, PO Box 647450, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-7450, T: 509-335-8686 or F: 509-335-7742, Contact Us