About Us

The Department of Art & Art History offers degrees in Studio Art including a BA (three-year and four-year) in Studio Art, Honours BFA (Bachelor of Fine Arts, four-year), and Minor in Studio Art. Our MFA (Master of Fine Arts) is well-established and recognized nationally.

The Art & Art History program includes a wide range of media investigations with courses in studio research, professional practice, art history, contemporary art and open electives that prepare students for career success as artists, curators, teachers, historians, academic scholars, and hybrid creative practitioners. 

We encourage the development of critical thinking, visual literacy, cultural sensitivity and awareness, and professional/entrepreneurial innovation relevant to creative professionals in a contemporary visual environment.

Our Studio Art program offers rigorous explorations in painting, drawing, photography, sculpture, printmaking, digital and extended media, and interdisciplinary practices. It offers intensive exploration of materials, integrated approaches to critical theory and skills-based practice, experiential learning and professional development. 

Our Art History courses are pertinent and relevant to contemporary contexts and include courses in Aboriginal art history and post-colonialism.

We also offer unique, interdisciplinary degrees within the College of Arts and Science: BA-BSc degrees (with the computer science and psychology departments) and a Minor in Digital Culture and New Media (with the English and sociology departments). 

Our program’s uniqueness:

  • Focus on sustainable studio practices in professional print, photo, sculpture, painting and drawing studios
  • Solo graduating BFA and MFA exhibitions for all majors and regular group exhibitions for all students
  • Friendly, involved faculty of professional studio artists and art historians
  • Private, individual studios for MFA students with ongoing mentorship by multiple faculty
  • Internships and MFA teaching opportunities 
  • Collegial atmosphere supporting student-directed learning
  • Interdisciplinary collaborations with other departments and faculty
  • Active Visual Artists Student Union (VASU)
  • Visiting artist lectures and studio visits  

Facilities and Resources:

  • Large, ventilated painting and drawing studios
  • Fully equipped photography studio with both digital and wet labs including historical processes
  • Large, sunlit printmaking studio facility, utilizing some of the safest technologies in Canada
  • Newly renovated sculpture and extended media facility supports woodworking, plaster-casting, sandblasting, waxworks, welding, kilns for firing clay and bronze casting
  • Digital Resource Centre with industry standard hardware and software
  • New Digital Media Lab for students working in digital photography, animation, video, sound, motion graphics and other digital art applications.
  • Professional exhibition and curatorial opportunities at the Gordon Snelgrove Gallery (a teaching facility and a public gallery, managed through the Department of Art & Art History,  www.usask.ca/snelgrove/  

Other Resources:

  • Strong relationship with campus galleries (Kenderdine/College Galleries), artist-run centres (AKA and PAVED Arts) and the new, award-winning Remai Modern Art Gallery
  • Beautiful campus with historical stone buildings, lush landscaping and ideal location along the Meeswasin Valley Trail and the South Saskatchewan River
  • Welcoming and rapidly growing mid-sized city with thriving cultural scene in close proximity to the river, biking and walking trails, forests, parks and lakes

Research themes in our department

Art History

  • Aboriginal and Canadian Visual Art
  • Contemporary Indigenous Art Practice
  • Curatorial Studies and Art Criticism
  • Interdisciplinary Studies in Visual Culture
  • Issues of Representation, Feminism and Gender
  • Socially Engaged and Activist Art

Curatorial Practices

  • Art, Social Space & Community-based Art Projects
  • Contemporary Curatorial Practice and New Exhibition Genres
  • Museum Interventions

Visual Cultures of Communication

  • Book Arts
  • Media History
  • Typography

Studio Art

  • Drawing and Painting
    • Figurative Practice
    • Impressionism, Realism, Abstract Expressionism
    • Phenomenology in Asia and the 20 th Century
    • Social Intimacy, Isolation, Emotion, Identity
    • Cultural Artifice and Spectacle
    • Fantasy, and Themed Sites
    • Utopias and Flux Architecture
    • Production of Paintings that mimic Cinematography
    • Virtual and Augmented Reality
  • Digital and Integrated Practice
    • Media Studies
    • Video Art
    • Digital Space
    • Representation and Presentation
  • Photography
    • Contemporary Images, Old and New Technologies
    • Historical, Analogue & Digital Processes
    • Memory and Narrative, Authenticity and Archival Practice
    • Relationship of the Body and Lens
  • Printmaking
    • Metaphor, Mythology, Visual Storytelling, Expressionism and Poetics
    • Multi-disciplinary Art Practices
    • Psychology, Dream imagery, and Interior Knowledge
    • Safer Printmaking
  • Sculpture
    • Ritual and Gesture
    • Sculpture as Ways of Knowing
    • Ways in which Art becomes a Cultural Performance
    • Free-form Modelling and 3d Printing

Degrees Offered