Visual Arts

Request Information Logo
Campus Visit Logo
Apply Now

The visual arts teach students mastery of multiple skills and how to apply them to solving problems. Artists learn to connect the dots, learn to take criticism and revise their ideas, and learn to develop reasoning, imagination, dexterity, and intuition. Both art and design provide students with tangible examples of cross-disciplinary thinking, rich and diverse global perspectives, and collaborative forms of engagement. They teach an appreciation of difference, an understanding of ethical issues, and an ability to use multiple ways to communicate, share and interact with other human beings.

The visual arts programs at Holy Cross College provides students with a strong foundation in technical, conceptual and professional skills. With areas of focus in studio art or graphic design, each student will learn to function as a competent and practiced artist or designer within their career track. Fundamentals are stressed in beginning and intermediate classes across the technical sphere. As each student masters the building blocks of visual media, progressive challenges are engaged through upper level courses, projects and conceptual activities. They will be prepared for future careers in the arts with practical knowledge in creative thinking, problem solving, the development of technical skills, and personal expression. Degree candidates culminate their experience and knowledge in an art exhibition in the Vincent Gallery during their last semester of study.

Design is a way of life, a point of view. It involves the whole complex of visual communications: talent, creative ability, manual skill, and technical knowledge. Aesthetics and economics, technology and psychology are intrinsically related to the process.
~ Paul Rand

Program Focus

art.stackowiczThe visual arts major is intended both to provide students with the practical tools necessary for success in any related professional field and to prepare future artists for graduate study. The program also provides valuable exposure to visual communication concepts and opportunities for creative expression to non-majors.

At Holy Cross, the visual arts major offers students the opportunity to:

  • Think about, create and understand a broad range of topics from many perspectives
  • Develop an understanding of research methods and participatory approaches using ideas, tools and skill sets to address complex design problems
  • Establish technical skills and core knowledge in studio art and design production while developing personally and culturally meaningful objects of self-expression
  • Develop essential professional skills such as writing (resume, artist’s statements), applying technology in preparing a portfolio, and pursuing exhibition and employment opportunities
  • Demonstrate knowledge of contemporary and historical art and design issues, movements and styles

Major and Minor Requirements


Chris Stackowicz
Chair, Visual Arts

Thom Andreae
Adjunct Professor of Graphic Design

Jack O’Hearn
Adjunct Professor

Linda Wilson
Adjunct Professor



Career Paths

Imagine you are sitting in a football stadium at the 50-yard line. The game is in the first quarter and your team is winning. Look around. Everything you see: the score board, the stadium, your team’s equipment and uniforms, your seat, the logos on the flags, the field, the images on the “Jumbo-Tron” and all the team colored clothing and towels – are each the result of a creative visual arts and design job. Someone even designed and made the popcorn box, the smart phone and the program you are holding!

You may choose continue your studies in a Master of Fine Arts program, or pursue a career in the arts. There is a wide world of career possibilities for visual arts majors, including:

    Advertising Artist
    Art Director
    Comic Book Artist
    Graphic Designer
    Animator (digital/traditional)
    Product Designer
    Set Designer
    Book Designer
    Digital Imaging
    Game Designer
    Web Designer
    Interior Designer
    Environmental Designer
    Model Maker
    Packaging Designer
    Clothing/Fashion Designer
    Textile Designer
    Jewelry Designer
    Commercial Serigrapher/Silkscreener
    Master Printer/Print Studio Owner
    Video Production/Editing
    Multimedia Specialist
    Film and Television Production
    Photo/Computer/Digital Lab Technician
    Scientific/Technical Illustrator
    Urban Graphics Designer (display, signs, billboards)
    Painter, Sculptor, Printmaker, Ceramicist, Fiber Artist
    Art Educator
    Studio Art Teacher
    Design Teacher
    Art History Teacher
    Museum Curator
    Museum Exhibit Designer
    Marketing Director
    Visual Resources Curator
    Auction Galleries
    Art Journalism
    Art Critic/Writer
    Art Therapy

And so much more.

Department Contact

Chris Stackowicz
Chair, Visual Arts