Visual and Media Arts
Whether in dedicated gallery space on our East Campus, mounted in the library, or displayed throughout the school, student artwork colors our campus with vibrance.Our visual and media arts courses expose students to an impressive range of creative expression. From drawing and painting to filmmaking and stained glass, Brentwood students explore new ideas in many ways—through the time-tested techniques of ceramics as well as new technologies like 3D printing. Art education extends beyond the classroom in collaborations with other disciples and through guest speakers that make concepts and imagery come alive for our school community.
As practicing artists, our faculty models artistic mastery and excellence. Each teacher provides a supportive atmosphere where students feel safe to confront the uncertain process of individual decision-making and creative challenge. Through the journey of creating art, students will not only evolve into accomplished young artists, but will also gain a deeper understanding of themselves and the ever-changing world in which we live.
The Lower School art program strengthens our students' visual perception while nurturing the development of creative self-expression. Students learn how to control the elements of design, such as line, shape, form, texture, color, and space, as they express themselves visually. Students take pride in their work and develop self-confidence in their ability to express themselves. Art projects integrate thematically with the grade level curriculum allowing students to deepen their learning in new ways.
Middle School arts courses offer new opportunities for students to engage more deeply in the creative process. Students develop their artistic and creative selves by choosing from among many visual arts offerings. Entry level courses provide the chance to try something new, while advanced levels of study sharpen a student's skill with new and interesting projects.
Sixth graders rotate quarterly through classes in coding, visual art, oratory arts, and innovation to round out their experience. Then in 7th and 8th Grades, students will choose at least two semesters of the arts, one visual and one performing, and at least one oratory course in their preferred areas of interest.
The mission of the Upper School Visual Arts Department is to guide students through the creative process while teaching visual language within a personal, contemporary, historical, cultural, political, and social context. With a variety of hands-on approaches, students learn to identify and apply the elements of art and the principles of design.
All classes follow the University of California VPF (“f”) subject requirement guidelines that hold students to a high standard of learning about the creative process. Through a wide range of 2-D and 3-D disciplines, we emphasize projects and discussions that invite a greater understanding of equity and equality, current events, and the importance of diversity. Courses encourage students to develop concepts, practice skills, problem solve, and eventually reach an impressive degree of mastery.
Advanced art students submit to various art competitions at the local, regional, and national levels, where their work is showcased.