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ART 400 A: Interdisciplinary Visual Arts Senior Studio

Meeting Time: 
MW 11:30am - 2:20pm
ART 207
Timea Tihanyi
Timea Tihanyi

Syllabus Description:


Dana Schutz's New York studio, 2012. © Marco Anelli.

Welcome to ART400: Interdisciplinary Visual Arts Senior Project                  SPRING 2024

MW 11:30-2:20 ART207

Instructor: Timea Tihanyi 
    Office hours: please email for appointment


Quick links to 

Course Schedule

What to do in case of absence (planned or unplanned)

Tips for Succeeding in this Course  / Grading

Where to Get Art Materials / Choosing a website / Artist Resume ResourcesExamples of public presentations of artwork

Senior Project Exhibition

IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT THE FIRST WEEK OF CLASS: Timea is away during the first week of classes, 3/25th and 27th.

On Monday, 3/25, class meets at Odegaard Library at NOON for a site visit with librarian Anne Davis. Anne will bring the class to the conference room where class continues on Zoom. Students will need to be on campus that day. 

On Wednesday, 3/27, class meets on Zoom at 11:30am. Students may attend the meeting remotely, will not need to come to campus on that day. 


Course Description

Art400 focuses on the development of senior–level artwork in any format/media and content of your choice.

During the course of the quarter you will be able to identify, research, develop, and  present in a public exhibition a senior project. In addition, we will focus this quarter on setting up a visual online portfolio oriented towards your post-educational goals (related to arts/design fields).

Students' responsibilities: Throughout the quarter, as a way of developing your interdisciplinary senior project to its fullest potential both technically and conceptually, you are responsible for

  • consistently moving your project forward by creating and presenting iterations/revisions of the work,
  • researching, exploring and testing possible materials and presentation formats and bringing these to class to share,
  • following up on feedback from peers and instructor by researching suggested artists/artwork examples, topics and concepts, and making improvements as suggested during consultations,
  • and dedicating a regular focused amount of time weekly in your designated studio space.

This course is a laboratory, designed to give you practice with being a professional in the field of the visual arts. Weekly deliverables are assignments that need to be turned in via Canvas and/or presented during class discussions, They are there to strengthen skills needed by any creative practitioner:

  • research,
  • observation,
  • experimentation/testing approaches,
  • refining and mastering a strategy,
  • reflecting on the work and the work process,
  • giving and receiving constructive critique,
  • establishing solid planning and time-management skills,
  • finding balance in fluid situations.

During the quarter we may have a few mini-projects. These are good ways to warm up for creativity, find potentials in new mediums, and get to know one another.

During the course of 10 weeks, in addition to developing an in-depth senior project of your determination, you will also learn to formulate a strong and compelling artist's written statement and resume, and to document and present visual work effectively. 

These will be put into a compelling and effective visual online portfolio (website), and will serve you well towards a future opportunity, grad school, job, exhibition, grant or residency application. By the end of the quarter, you will have an artist website and will also present your work in a class group exhibition at the Odegaard Undergraduate Library, which we will install and deinstall together as a group. In preparation for our exhibition, you will be asked to volunteer for one of the show task teams, such as install and deinstall crews, PR, poster, documentation, wall labels, and reception teams. 

With the help of the skills acquired in this class, you will be prepared for professional life beyond school in any creative discipline.

Shared studio spaces are available in art 331 and 335. Allocation of these will take place on week 2. Occupation of studio space is conditioned on student's active use of the space for art making. 

Class Meetings Format

In your Course Canvas Schedule you'll see two types of upcoming meetings. These are:

  • ART400 ALL CLASS meeting: Workshops and Discussions. This meeting is REQUIRED for EVERYONE. This is our group time to check in with each other and plan ahead, discuss current issues, conduct peer-group reviews, build community, and learn new content. Meetings will start promptly at 11:30 but it is unlikely that we will use the entire class time. 
  • ART400 Individual Consultations: This meeting is REQUIRED ONLY for the duration of your scheduled meeting time of 15-20minutes. Outside of your scheduled meeting time, it is WORK TIME for EVERYONE. You may work anywhere, in the classroom, in any of the SOA+AH+D studios, or at home. 
  • There are 3 such individual consultations scheduled throughout the quarter, giving each student ample time for getting feedback and getting work done during class time: 
    • First round: week 3
    • Second round: weeks 5-6
    • Third round: week 8
    • You must preset significant development during these individual consultations. Please have the project be near you to demonstrate (screen sharing of showing the actual object, as well as upload appropriate documentation: images, notes, photos, links and other media to the appropriate Canvas Assignment ahead of time.  

In addition, you may reach out to schedule additional meetings during ART400 Office Hours. These are OPTIONAL opportunities to meet with the instructor one on one to discuss any concerns or questions you may have. Please email me for appointment and bring your questions.

Canvas Assignments

We will use Canvas Assignments to upload and archive work, and get points for the work completed.

Canvas Assignments will accept all types of files and links.

Always post platform-independent generic output formats, such as a JPG (for images) or PDF (for saved documents).

If you need to post a work-in-progress from your specialized software, such as animation, audio/video editing, and CAD, please post a series of screen captures (PNG).

Videos and audio must be uploaded to your Youtube or Vimeo account, with URL shared in Canvas. Information about how to upload is available here: Studio Audio Postcard: What does your work sound like?

To share your work in progress with other students in class (e.g. your peer review group):

Post images to the Discussions section of Canvas. I encourage you to interact with one another, ask questions, respond to discussion prompts, and use this tool to talk about the ideas we are working through collectively in the class.


Click on title to go to the Grading information page for more details.

In short, Final grade will be determined by the following:

Completed senior project 30%

Completed senior portfolio 20%

Artist Statement 10%

Participation and Contribution 20% (with an emphasis on advancing your own as well as others' learning in class. An active engagement with all aspects of the course: in class activities, including critiques, class discussions and peer group work)

Preparedness and Development 20% (having assignment deliverables fulfilled, ability to present new developments of senior work in progress at every meeting, meeting work-in-progress check-points) 


  • Missed assignments and critiques will result in no credit for that assignment.

  • Absences prevent participation and thus will result in lost participation credits for the day, negatively affecting the final grade.

  • If sudden illness, emergency or random act of nature should prevent you from attending class, you are responsible for checking in with me and following up by checking current and new assignments and upcoming schedule. Missed work must be completed ON or AHEAD OF TIME, unless plans for extension were developed in discussion with the instructor. See more here: What to do in case of absence (planned or unplanned)

  • Extensions and special accommodations are only considered in advance discussion with the instructor. Please notify me if you have special circumstances, such as need special accommodations due to temporary circumstances or come down with an illness. With you being on top of things, we can make a plan ahead of time. You must stick to the plan as outlined during our discussion. 
  • If you have any questions / concerns about the class or your performance, please don't hesitate to schedule an appointment to discuss those with me.

BEST PRACTICES and Tips for Succeeding in this Course

  • Keep a sketchbook and continue to collect ideas, or collect all project related materials in a folder on your computer. 

  • Check Canvas regularly, at least twice a week and the day before class, for updates. Pay attention to your UW email, Canvas email, Canvas Announcements and Schedule updates.

  • During our class meetings and consultations, keep distractions (all other tasks and project, electronics, screens, music, roommates and pets) at the minimum. Class begins at the appointed time.  Log in ahead of time and plan to be engaged for the entire duration of our interaction. I will take a roll call every time and will ask for feedback regularly. Spotty attendance will result in the loss of participation points. 

  • Participate! Add relevant content to the topical discussions and group activities. Actively move the group discussion forward. 

More about Grading and Absence:

Assignments will receive points in Canvas regularly. Late assignment will not receive points, unless exception has been granted by instructor. 

The senior project and portfolio will receive verbal feedback during critiques. No letter grade until the completion of the course, but you are welcome to check in with me any time about how you are doing.

There is no make up for participation, missed consultations with the instructor and missed peer-reviews. 

If you have any questions or concerns about the course, please email me for appointment to discuss them. 

Also see School of Art + AH + D Policies: Policies 2022-23.docx 

Interpretation of Grading Scale:

A 4.0-3.9 The highest possible performance in all aspects of the course with work exemplifying exceptional quality. Exhibits outstanding creative potential.

A- 3.8-3.7 / B+ 3.6-3.5 Exhibits creative potential with superior performance in most aspects of the course; high quality in the remainder. Well prepared for subsequent courses in the field.

B 3.4-3.3 / B- 3.2 High performance in most aspects of the course. Very good chance of success in subsequent courses in the field. Exhibits some creative potential.

C+ 3.1-3.0 / C 2.8-2.9 Good performance in some of the course; satisfactory performance in the remainder. Exhibits some creative potential. Good chance of success in subsequent courses in the field.

C- 2.7 / D+ 2.5-2.6 Demonstrates the minimum amount of research needed to complete the course with satisfactory performance.

D 2.1-2.4 Met basic requirements in most of the course, with the remainder being somewhat substandard.

F 2.0 and below Did not meet basic requirements for class.


Code of Conduct for a Productive Senior Quarter

This is an interdisciplinary visual arts studio course; we will be thinking and talking about, as well as making art in this manner.

Please note that class time is for workshops on professional practices, consultations, peer reviews, critiques and group interaction (such as planning and feedback).

Work on the senior project is to be done outside of class time in the workspace available to you.

Observe all health and safety rules. If you don't know what the safety issues are around the use of a particular material or tool, ask first. 

Expect to spend at least 6-10hours/week on your studio practice outside of class and set up a daily, weekly and monthly schedule that will work for you throughout the quarter.

One-on-one consultations will provide you with feedback on the work in progress presented and help you to tackle challenges and find alternative directions that help the sophisticated development of your project. Consultation and demos on unfamiliar materials and techniques are always available upon your request.

This class is conducted in a positive and collaborative spirit, requiring you to engage with the instructor and with the group process as well as to contribute to building an environment of learning and experimentation where:

  • taking risks is preferred;
  • safe to ask questions and debate issues;
  • feedback is offered in a supportive spirit;
  • all participants are attentive and respectful of each other.



  • Plagiarism is using the creations, ideas, words, inventions, or images of someone else in your own work without formal acknowledgement or permission. This applies to written papers and research as well as to art, design and architectural images. 
  • Please see  Student Academic Conduct Code and check with your instructor if you have questions about what constitutes plagiarism. 
  • Instances of plagiarism will be referred for disciplinary action to the Vice Provost for Academic & Student Affairs. 
  • More information about reporting academic misconduct: 


Religious accommodation:

Washington state law  requires that UW develop a policy for accommodation of student absences or  significant hardship due to reasons of faith or conscience, or for organized religious  activities. The UW’s policy, including more information about how to request an  accommodation, is available at Religious Accommodations Policy.

Accommodations must be requested within the first two weeks of this course  using the Religious Accommodations Request Form.


Catalog Description: 
Focuses on the development of exhibition quality artwork, culminating in a group show. Covers curatorial issues, installation, and presentation. Assignments are designed to strengthen oral presentation skills, artist's written statement, critiquing abilities, and ability to place work within a larger art historical framework.
GE Requirements: 
Arts and Humanities (A&H)
Last updated: 
February 13, 2024 - 4:54am