Visual Art Undergraduate Programs

Through the Visual Art (VISA) Program in the Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory, students will find opportunities to showcase their talents and to participate in the wider art world of the university and the city of Vancouver. The Visual Art Students Association (VASA) connects visual art and art history students though events, workshops, and invited presentations. The Undergraduate Journal of Art History (UJAH) gives students an opportunity to have their work published in a student-run university journal. An annual BFA/BA exhibition is staged for graduating VISA students: works selected for this exhibition are prominently displayed and published in the exhibition catalogue.

The VISA program equips students with the tools and skills necessary to work professionally in the field of contemporary visual art or to pursue further studies, such as a Master of Fine Arts or graduate work in education, architecture, law, or library and archival studies.

Faculty in the Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory are actively involved in research and bring this strength into their teaching at all levels. Undergraduate and graduate seminars enhance student experience in advanced academic and artistic research. Many of our graduates have established distinguished careers in the creative, scholarly, and gallery fields.

The main goal of the Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory is to foster critical and reflexive thinking about the visual arts within an inclusive and supportive environment. The Department maintains the highest standards of intellectual, creative, and administrative practice, seeking to be innovative in pedagogy and international in scholarly perspective. The Department regards interaction with the social sphere as an essential component of academic study and engages with professional and community groups associated with their practices.

The Department offers four undergraduate programs in visual art:

  • The Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) Major in Visual Art, a professional program in the practice of art. It can lead to further studies in art practice such as an MFA or to other professional programs that involve the making and understanding of art and visual culture.
  • The Honours BFA program, for students demonstrating, in the opinion of the Department, a special aptitude and capacity and who would benefit from working intensively in the subject.
  • The Bachelor of Arts Major in Visual Art, BA (VISA), which is similar to a liberal arts degree with an emphasis on studio art. (A double major option is available. See Faculty of Arts requirements.)
  • The BA Minor in Visual Art program, for students in a major or honours program in a subject other than the visual art specialization.

To learn more, please explore our website or email the Undergraduate Advisor at deana.holmes@ubc.ca