The Arts Department
The Arts Division works to expand students’ confidence, awareness and discipline through their own creative works and performances. By studying work from different cultures–both contemporary and historic–students become more accomplished practitioners and learn to articulate informed and meaningful responses to works of art.
The Division includes three departments: Music, Theater and Visual Art. In addition to formal courses the division generates student performances and exhibitions throughout the year. This work is enhanced each year with visiting professional artists.
CLASS IV: Students entering Class IV must enroll in one Elements of Style course (Art 11, 12M or 12E, 13 or 14) each semester. These four courses may be taken in any order, but all four must be completed by the end of a student’s Class III year. Members of Class IV may enroll in additional full-credit Arts Division courses only with the permission of the Academic Office. Chorus and/or Studio Music may be taken in addition to the required curriculum without such permission.
CLASS III: Returning members of Class III must complete their requirements in Elements of Style (Art 11, 12M or 12E, 13 or 14) by taking those courses not taken during their Class IV year. Entering members of Class III must take Art 11 during one semester and Art 12M or 12E, 13 or 14 during the other. Students may enroll in additional full-credit Arts Division courses only with the permission of the Academic Office. Chorus and/or Studio Music may be taken in addition to the required curriculum without such permission.
CLASSES I and II: Members of Classes I and II must satisfy their distributional requirement in the arts during their last two years by one of the following methods:
- taking two half-credit courses in the Division. (Space may be available in Art 11, 12M or 12E, 13 or 14, but only after Class IV and III enrollment is complete.)
- taking one full-credit course in the Division.
- regular participation in the Chapel Chorus for two full years with no academic credit.
- regular participation in the Small Chorus or SWAG for one full year with no academic credit.
- regular participation in Studio Music for two semesters (do not have to be consecutive) with no academic credit.
- taking a major role in a full length play or musical with no academic credit.
- taking a supporting role in two full-length plays or musicals with no academic credit.
- directing or taking a role in two one-act productions.
- serving on the production/running crew of two full-length plays or musicals.
PLAQUES: As a diploma requirement, students in Class I must design and carve a plaque for permanent display at the School. With the permission of the instructor, members of Class II may carve their plaques before their Class I year. The scheduling of woodcarving classes will be arranged at the beginning of the year.
Elements of Style Courses: 2021-2022
Required of Classes IV and III (see note above). Open to Classes II and I only if space permits.
These four half-credit courses are at the core of the Arts Division curriculum. The courses share a set of terms common to all the Arts. The intent is to give each student the ability to sharpen their ability to look, listen, and participate in the Arts with perception and discretion.
ART 11. Elements of Style in Art History. Fall, Spring. The Department. 3 meetings weekly. Half credit. This course introduces students to the elements of style in painting, sculpture, and architecture. Students will gain an appreciation of works from diverse cultures and periods, with particular emphasis on the western tradition during the second quarter. Students will develop the vocabulary of art criticism as they learn to articulate their observations with precision and to interpret these observations through compelling analysis. Students will also explore the concept of period style, and they will fuse this understanding of style with the appropriate historical contexts. Through writing approximately four essays over the course of the semester, students will become increasingly confident in their critical judgment and will leave the course with a better understanding of the expressive power of the visual arts. This course is a prerequisite for Advanced Placement Art History.
ART 12M. Elements of Style in Music: Foundations. Fall, Spring. The Department. 3 meetings weekly. Half credit. A student will take ART-12M or ART-12E, but not both. This course provides an introduction to perceptive listening, an exploration of world music, an understanding of how music reflects the society and culture in which it was created, and basic instruction in singing and playing. Students will begin with a survey of the nature of sound production. They will explore basic elements of music such as rhythm, melody, and tone. The class will then continue with a three-week introduction to the basics of singing and tone production. Following that, students will learn to play steel drums. The class ends with a study of world music focused on how current and historical cultures have used music for art, religion, and celebration.
ART 12E. Elements of Style in Music: Ensemble. Fall. The Department. 3 meetings weekly. Half credit. A student may take ART-12M or ART-12E, but not both. Open to all instrumentalists with some degree of proficiency on their instruments; no audition necessary. This course provides an introduction to ensemble playing. Students will spend time focusing on skills acquisition and development, through playing a variety of music genres. Emphasis is placed on proficiency and preparation for playing in the Chamber Orchestra or Jazz Ensemble.
ART 13. Elements of Style in Visual Studies. Fall, Spring. The Department. 3 meetings weekly. Half credit. This studio art course is designed to develop a student’s ability to recognize and understand various artistic forms. Students will explore drawing, design, color theory, and three-dimensional form.
ART 14. Elements of Style in Theater. Fall, Spring. The Department. 3 meetings weekly. Half credit. Open to Class III. This course will serve as an introduction to American realistic theater. Recognizing that theater is the study of human behavior, as students take on the roles of both actor and playwright, much attention will be paid to the motivations that inform language and action. The class will culminate in a public performance of original scenes.
Music Courses: 2021-2022
The Music Department at Middlesex recognizes the intrinsic merit of music and firmly believes music training and the appreciation of musical values are important factors in the growth and development of the whole person. Through the study of music from different cultures we seek to gain a deeper understanding of our connection as humans and to find the commonalities in our existence. The discipline of learning an instrument teaches students the value of dedication, the joy of playing with others, and the satisfaction that comes through mastery and self-expression. To that end, we provide ensemble experiences, recital opportunities, and private study that meets the students where they are and challenges them to develop their talents in depth.
The following courses may be taken for academic credit.
MUSIC 22. Advanced Studio Music. Spring. The Department. Lesson Block and practice times. Open to members of Classes I and II. Prerequisite: Music lessons and Permission of the Department. This is an advanced course in studio music. Admission to the course is based upon a student’s previous accomplishment in music as evaluated by the student’s private teacher and an audition with the Department. The student’s performance in the Winter Music Recital may be considered as an audition for this course. The student is required to attend one lesson per week, practice at least three 40-minute sessions per week (to be scheduled by the Music Department), outside of class practice time, and perform in the Spring Recital and the Thoreau Music Recital. In addition, each student will be responsible for memorizing and performing at least two pieces of diverse style, learning six major and six minor scales and arpeggios, and completing weekly assignments in etudes or comparable exercises to build technique. A student’s grade will reflect their in-class work, lessons, outside of class practice time, and recital performances. Private music lessons are not covered by tuition. Students will be charged the School’s usual fee for lessons.
MUSIC 23. Middlesex Jazz Ensemble. Fall, Spring. Mr. Barnett. 3 meetings weekly plus 1 private lesson. Open to woodwind, brass, and rhythm section instrumentalists; audition required. The Jazz Ensemble offers music students the opportunity to play and learn about jazz and jazz improvisation. By working on standard compositions from the jazz repertoire, from lead sheets and written arrangements, students can experience both a small group setting (with emphasis on improvisation) and big band ensemble playing. Students are expected to attend three rehearsals, take one private music lesson, and practice regularly each week. A student’s grade will reflect their outside practice time and ability to perform the ensemble repertoire. Private music lessons are not covered by tuition. Students will be charged the School’s usual fee for lessons.
MUSIC 24. Chamber Orchestra. Fall, Spring. Dr. Wetzel. 3 meetings weekly plus 1 private lesson. Open string, woodwind, brass, and piano instrumentalists; audition required. The Chamber Orchestra offers classical music students an opportunity to explore and perform chamber and orchestral music of the Baroque, Classical, and Romantic eras and the twentieth century. Students will learn to develop non-verbal, musical communication skills necessary for playing intimate chamber music. Focus will be placed on preparing music for the Holiday Concert and Spring Instrumental Concert. A student’s grade will reflect their outside practice time and ability to perform the ensemble repertoire. Private music lessons are not covered by tuition. Students will be charged the School’s usual fee for lessons.
MUSIC 25. Steel Pan Ensemble. Spring. Mr. Barnett. 4 meetings weekly. This course is designed for students who have an interest in learning to play the steel pan and being part of a fun performance band, performing at the Spring Instrumental Concert. Beyond learning to play the steel pans in class, students will learn basic music theory and study the culture and music of the Caribbean. Music experience is not a prerequisite. The group is also open to students who play drums, guitar, or bass.
MUSIC 26. Introduction to Digital Music. Fall. Mr. Barnett. 4 meetings weekly. This course offering is designed to provide an introduction to audio production. The primary software is GarageBand by Apple. Students will learn how to record, edit, and mix music through a series of group and individual projects designed to promote creativity and expression. Students will learn about the elements of music: rhythm, form, melody, etc. Students will explore the many facets of GarageBand including how to create audio tracks, add audio effects (EQ, Noise Gate, Compressor, Delay, and Reverb), create MIDI tracks, podcasting, and create music for video.
MUSIC 27. Middlesex Foundations Ensemble. Spring. Mr. Barnett. 3 meetings weekly plus 1 private lesson. Open to all instrumentalists with some degree of proficiency on their instruments; no audition necessary. Students who want to develop the necessary skills to perform with the Chamber Orchestra or Jazz Ensemble are invited to practice these skills in this course. Students who wish to participate as a pianist, drummer/percussionist, or guitarist will need special permission from the Head of the Music Department. The Foundations Ensemble will prepare music across a variety of genres, from pop/jazz to Classical and traditional concert band repertoire. Special attention in class is given to intonation, rhythmic accuracy, and tone quality. Focus will be on skills acquisition and refinement, with the hopes of advancing to Chamber Orchestra or Jazz Ensemble. Private music lessons are not covered by tuition. Students will be charged the School’s usual fee for lessons.
MUSIC 40. Advanced Placement Music Theory. Year. Dr. Wetzel. 5 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Permission of the Department. Distributional credit in the Arts or the Humanities. The broad goals of this course are to develop fundamental music literacy necessary to function effectively among fellow musicians and to develop tools to understand music in new ways. We begin this course with a study of the basic elements of music theory (scales, key signatures, rhythm, etc.) and quickly progress to a study of chord progression and the principles of voice leading. To facilitate this learning, aural skills will be developed incorporating melodic and rhythmic dictation and sight-singing. The course then advances to the study of secondary dominants, chromaticism, and mode mixture. Assessments include nightly workbook assignments and larger, long-term composition and transcription projects. This course prepares students for the Advanced Placement Examination in Music Theory.
The following offerings do not receive academic credit, but may be used to fulfill upper level distributional credit in the Arts.
Studio Music. Fall, Spring. The Department. Block TBA. A student in Class I or II will receive half credit toward fulfilling the Arts distributional requirement for each individual semester of participation in Studio Music. This is a course in applied music which develops the student’s vocal and/or instrumental talent through solo and ensemble performances. Students will have the opportunity to perform in the Winter, Spring, and Thoreau Recitals, and are encouraged to participate in the Chamber Orchestra or in the Jazz Ensemble, and/or Choral Ensembles. Students will be charged the School’s usual fee for lessons.
Chapel Chorus. Fall, Spring. Mr. Barnett. Chapel Chorus Block. Students in Class I or II may fulfill the Arts distributional requirement by participating in all required rehearsals and performances for two years. Chapel Chorus is a non-auditioned singing ensemble which performs both a cappella and accompanied choral works. Anyone is invited to join and no previous musical background or experience is necessary. Public performances throughout the year include a candlelight Holiday Concert in early December, and the Spring Concert in April.
Small Chorus. Year. Dr. Wetzel. Members must be available Monday/Tuesday evening, Thursday morning, and must choose two of four L Block rehearsal times to commit to Small Chorus. Small Chorus members must be members of Chapel Chorus. Audition is required at the beginning of the school year. Students in Class I or II can fulfill the Arts distributional requirement by participating in all required rehearsals and performances for one year. Small Chorus is the heart of the choral program at Middlesex. It is a select mixed singing ensemble of 24-28 members who perform sophisticated choral works, including madrigals, classical masterworks, and collegiate style a cappella contemporary/popular songs. The Small Chorus performs in the same concerts as the Chapel Chorus and gives additional concerts for other school events including Revisit Days and Terry Room performances. The soprano and alto group, the MXolydians, and the tenor and bass group, Bateman’s Bullfrogs, are chosen from the members of Small Chorus.
SWAG. Year. Mr. Barnett. Monday or Tuesday evening. In combination with Chapel Chorus, students in Class I or II can fulfill the Arts distributional requirement by participating in all required rehearsals and performances for one year. SWAG members must be members of Chapel Chorus. Audition is required at the beginning of the school year. SWAG is a singing ensemble of 12-14 sopranos and altos who sing at the Holiday Concert and informal school performances.
Theater Courses: 2021-2022
The goals of our program are twofold. Primarily, the focus is on the making of theater; we want students to become stronger practitioners of the theater arts. At every level of study, something is produced: a staged performance, a written scene, a short film, an original design, a fully realized production. In doing this work, students are asked to apply and develop a sense of creativity and imagination, to stretch their abilities, to take risks, and to develop a sense of artistic discipline. Secondly, as theater is the study of human behavior and experience, the Department wants students to gain a sense of empathy and understanding for the world around them. Through the act of creating a theatrical world, they should develop a stronger understanding for the world they live in.
In addition to the courses listed below, advanced students may design with the department Independent Courses in direction, playwriting and design.
THEATER 33. Approaches to Acting. Fall. Mr. Kane. 4 meetings weekly. Working from the techniques laid out in the Atlantic Theater Company’s book, A Practical Handbook for the Actor, students will practice creating characters for the stage. We will focus first on performing scenes from modern playwrights and then on performing scenes from Shakespeare. In all our work, emphasis will be placed on creating realistic, connected, purposeful and dynamic performances.
THEATER 34. Advanced Approaches to Acting. Fall. Mr. Kane. 4 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Theater 33 or Permission of the Department. Using the fundamentals laid out in Theater 33, students will work to expand their range as actors. Starting with scenes from Chekhov and then working our way to newer playwrights, students will continue to explore what is needed to create truthful and fully embodied characters for the stage.
THEATER 37. Technical Theater. Spring. The Department. 4 meetings weekly. This course serves as an introduction to basic technical theater techniques. Students will learn and use various skills focused on building and painting sets and props, hanging and focusing lights, and programming the light board. Students will exercise creative and practical skills through in-class projects of set, lighting, and sound design. Each student will be required to give and receive peer feedback and work collaboratively and safely.
THEATER 38. Theater Design. Spring. Mr. DuBray. 4 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Theater 37 or Permission of the Department. This course is an in-depth look at designing for theater. Building on skills developed in Theater 37, students will utilize script analysis techniques employed by designers and directors to develop a clear production concept for a full-length play. Working off of a common text, the semester focuses on creating and presenting set, sound, lighting and costume designs to the class. Each student will be required to give and receive peer feedback and work collaboratively and safely. The opportunity to design for a Middlesex production as part of this class is a possibility. THIS COURSE WILL NOT BE OFFERED IN 2021-2022.
THEATER 80. Projects in Theater. Spring. Mr. DuBray. 4 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Theater 34 or Permission of the Department. This ensemble based acting course focuses on exploring current American playwrights from realists like Tracy Letts and David Margolies to the more surreal, such as Mac Wellman and Charles Mee. In addition to creating performances for the stage, the ensemble will also create shorter video pieces.
THEATER 81. Movie Making for Actors. Spring. Mr. DuBray. 4 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Theater 33 or Permission of the Department. This course builds on the understanding of character and action developed in the department’s acting curriculum and puts it toward the making of short narrative movies. Students will spend the semester making projects that explore process, cinematography, editing, sound and directing. The course culminates with each student creating an original short movie.
THEATER 90. Advanced Projects in Theater. Spring. Mr. DuBray. 4 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Theater 34 or higher or Permission of the Department. Bringing a years’ worth of technique to practice, students collaborate to choose and rehearse their final performance as an ensemble. The course ends in a full-length workshop production in the Hugh Fortmiller Studio Theater. THIS COURSE WILL NOT BE OFFERED IN 2021-2022.
Visual Arts Courses 2021-2022
The Visual Arts Department maintains that learning about, thinking about, and creating art are vital and valuable curricular pursuits. Whether developing critical and analytical skills, visual sensitivity, practical technical skills, or visual vocabulary, the visual arts curriculum at Middlesex provides opportunities to expand and sharpen each student’s appreciation for and experience with the visual arts. Through an integrative studio-based approach, students at every level are expected to not only create and engage visually with different media, but to research, write, and verbally critique their own work and the work of their peers. Ishibashi Gallery, art-history courses, and research projects within the studios introduce students to a diverse array of works from around the world and throughout time. Ultimately, in creating works of art and in studying the works of others, students develop a better understanding of themselves in relation to history and to the world they inhabit.
Full-credit courses are open to members of Classes I and II, and to others with the permission of the Academic Office. These art courses may be pursued under the structure of an Athletic Project without academic credit for one season during the Class I or Class II year with the permission of the Art Department in conjunction with the Athletic Director. Approved Athletic Projects do not count towards the seasonal requirements for students in Class I and II.
ART 20. Advanced Drawing. Fall, Spring. Mrs. McCarthy. 3 meetings weekly. This course builds upon the visual language and techniques studied in Art 13. In this studio-based course, we will begin by drawing from direct observation, but will quickly expand our practice to include non-traditional approaches to image making, including, but not limited to, drawing from imagination, collage, historical and contemporary references. We will use drawing as a means to problem solve and explore, exploring the relationship between process and concept. Students will be required to maintain a sketchbook and work in the studio outside of class time. Individual and group critiques, artist research and exhibition of artwork are integral components of this course.
ART 21. Painting. Fall, Spring. Mrs. McCarthy. 3 meetings weekly. This course is designed to introduce students to the language of painting through a variety of assignments beginning with gesture drawing, monochromatic still life studies and color theory experiments. After a formal introduction, students will be encouraged to develop their technical skills and expressive ideas as artists through their investigation of the landscape and figure. Students will be required to paint in the studio outside of class time, incorporate research into their process, and discuss ideas in individual and group critiques.
ART 22. Advanced Painting. Fall, Spring. Mrs. McCarthy. 3 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Art 21. This course builds upon the materials, concepts and methods studied in Painting. Students will continue to work from observation but will also explore abstraction and figuration through traditional and experimental methods. Assignments will become increasingly student driven and independent and artist research will be encouraged in order to help students explore the relationship between technique and idea. Group and individual critiques will remain an integral component of the curriculum.
ART 23. Advanced Studio Projects. Fall, Spring. The Department. 3 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Two or more studio courses. This course is designed for the advanced student who is ready to take on more independent conceptual and experimental research-based work in the studio to develop their distinctive point of view in the arts. Students will be asked to submit a substantial proposal at the start of the semester elucidating their objectives for the semester and will work closely with the teacher throughout the semester to carry out their proposal. Weekly research, dedicated studio practice, critiques, and discussions are essential components of the course.
ART 26. Printmaking and Design Thinking. Spring. The Department. 3 meetings weekly. Especially since the invention of the printing press, graphic design has played a large role in media production and pop culture. Graphic images are everywhere we look from signage to movie posters to pizza boxes. In this class, we will build on our introductory drawing skills and explore the world of design from illustration and posters to textiles and branding/marketing through a multiple of mediums: monoprinting, screenprinting, artist’s books, Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop. Students can expect to leave the class with a foundation in design theory and thinking, typography, Adobe Creative Suite, and printmaking techniques. Individual and group critiques will encourage students to analyze, describe and interpret artwork. The class will end with an open final project.
ART 27. Video Production. Fall, Spring. Mr. Callahan. 3 meetings weekly. This course is an introduction to video production as a means of telling a story. Through a series of project-based assignments, students will develop basic skills in digital video production, while becoming familiar with the medium’s unique technical and aesthetic qualities. Using an array of tools, including cameras, computers, microphones, and Adobe Premiere editing software, students will explore multiple strategies of making art with video.
ART 28. Advanced Video Production. Fall, Spring. Mr. Callahan. 3 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Art 27 or Permission of the Department. During this course, students will create more sophisticated and complex video productions. We will consider approaches to film as a medium of communication and as an art form through examining an assortment of popular, historical and international productions. Students will explore the many uses of the advanced editing programs Adobe Premiere and After Effects. We will focus on developing editing skills such as transitions, color correction, audio, graphics and special effects. Students will also work on larger scale projects and gain a greater understanding of the specifics of how to plan and manage a bigger production.
ART 29. Hand-building in Clay. Fall. Ms. Potwin. 3 meetings weekly. This course will introduce students to a variety of traditional and non-traditional techniques in hand-building, including pinch pots, coil and slab construction as well as basic glazing and firing methods. Weekly projects as well as several research-driven projects will build fabrication skills and encourage students to challenge themselves in developing and expressing a personal aesthetic in their work. Practice outside of class time is an important part of the learning process throughout the course in order to build a relationship with clay. Critiques are an integral part of the growth process in this course.
ART 30. Wheel-working in Clay. Spring. Ms. Potwin. 3 meetings weekly. In this course, students learn techniques on the pottery wheel to make vessels and sculpture, as well as basic glazing and firing methods. Weekly projects as well as several research-driven projects will build fabrication skills and encourage students to challenge themselves in developing and expressing a personal aesthetic in their work. Practice outside of class time is an important part of the learning process throughout the course in order to build a relationship with clay. Critiques are an integral part of the growth process in this course.
ART 31. Advanced Ceramics. Fall, Spring. Ms. Potwin. 3 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Art 29 or Art 30. In this course, students have the opportunity to delve deeply into a few fabrication methods and concepts that really interest them. New and non-traditional fabrication techniques may also be introduced, and advanced ceramics students are expected to develop their own studio practice. Weekly studio visits with the instructor will help to build a network of contemporary and historical art references that serve as inspiration for their own personal style. Mid-semester and end of semester critiques are an integral part of the growth process in this course.
ART 32. Advanced Studio Projects: 3-D. Fall, Spring. Ms. Potwin 3 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Art 31 or Art 34 and Permission of the Department. Students committed to mastering their skills in sculptural form in clay are offered the opportunity to tailor a course program to further explore areas of interest. This might include alternative firing techniques, jewelry making, clay sculpture or advanced decorative techniques. Each student will design, create, and host their own final exhibit at the close of the semester.
ART 33. Sculpture Carving. Spring. Mrs. McNally. 3 meetings weekly. This course will be an exploration of three-dimensional sculptural forms. Students will develop and explore their ideas using clay, stone, and wood and a variety of traditional and nontraditional tools and processes. The sculptures will be created through subtraction processes allowing each student to gain an understanding of the relationship between formal, conceptual, and aesthetic concerns. Group discussion of work will be integral to the class. Students will be required to show their work in a class exhibition.
ART 34. Introduction to Process and Materials in Sculpture. Fall, Spring. Ms. Potwin. 3 meetings weekly. In this course students will explore a variety of traditional and nontraditional 3-dimensional media and processes including, but not limited to: wood, clay, wire, fibers, cardboard, plaster, polymer clay, mold making, and casting. Assignments will address sculptural and design concerns, as well as figurative techniques and experimental fabrication. Critique is an essential component of this class. No previous sculpture experience is necessary.
ART 35. Photography. Fall, Spring. Mr. Callahan. 3 meetings weekly. This course is for both beginning students and those who already have some photographic experience. Students will learn the basics of digital camera function and Photoshop workflow. Assignments will involve a variety of photographic genres, such as, but not limited to, portraiture, nature, conceptual and studio photography. Students will focus on gaining a deeper understanding of utilizing photography as a medium and form of personal expression. Those who do not have access to a digital camera may borrow one from the department.
ART 36. Advanced Photography. Fall. Mr. Callahan. 3 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Art 35 or Permission of the Department. Students in this course will take a more rigorous approach to the aesthetic and conceptual aspects of their work with emphasis on the development of a personal photographic vision. By the end of the semester each student is required to produce a portfolio of images organized around a coherent theme and expressing an individual aesthetic point of view, informed by the work of the great photographic masters, both classic and contemporary. It is expected that throughout the semester students will regularly shoot photographs outside of the designated class periods, and on occasion, be available to go off campus on shooting expeditions.
ART 37. Advanced Photography: Photographic Portraiture. Fall. Mr. Callahan. 3 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Art 35 or Permission of the Department. Since its inception in the nineteenth-century, photography and portraiture have been inextricably linked. In this course, students will explore the rich legacy of photographic portraiture, becoming acquainted with the giants of the medium such as Leibovitz, Avedon, Sander, Cartier-Bresson, Hurrell, Arbus, and Lorca DiCorcia. Initial assignments will flow from our study of historical styles and philosophical approaches. Technical aspects may include, but are not limited to – studio lighting, camera angles, and compositional considerations. As a final project, each student will be required to create an original portfolio of portraits that exhibit both a personal visual style and coherent, conceptual point of view. THIS COURSE WILL NOT BE OFFERED IN 2021-2022.
ART 38. Advanced Photography: The Photo Book. Spring. Mr. Callahan. 3 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Art 35 or Permission of the Department. Even in this age of ever evolving technology, the photo book remains a significant art form, central to the practice of many contemporary photographers. In this course, students will create their own self-published photo book utilizing on-line services such as Blurb. We will consider the various factors that contribute to a successful photo book, such as the unity of concept and vision, sequencing of images, as well as aspects of design and typography. For inspiration, students will be exposed to a wide variety of photo books, from those that changed the course of photo history, to others that are more unusual and esoteric. As a prerequisite, students must already have produced an aesthetically and thematically consistent body of work that will provide the foundation necessary to create a meaningful photo book.
ART 39. Advanced Photoshop. Fall, Spring Mr. Callahan. 3 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Art 35 or Permission of the Department. This course will address the technical aspects of digital workflow and Photoshop technique on a more advanced level. Concepts covered will include, but not be limited to: Camera Raw, Adobe Bridge, Adobe Lightroom, Layers, Masks, Filters, Advanced Color Workflow, Composite Images and HDR. While the assignments will be structured around the goal of mastering a variety of digital processes, it is expected that students will be photographing subjects suitable for the creation of a final portfolio that manifests both technical skill and artistic merit. THIS COURSE WILL NOT BE OFFERED IN 2021-2022.
ART 40. Advanced Placement Art History. Year. Ms. Munro. 5 meetings weekly. Prerequisite: Permission of the Department. Admission to AP Art History is based on performance in Art 11, United States History, and English 30 and 31. This course may be designated as a History course. Distributional credit in the Arts, the Humanities, or the Social Sciences. Spanning from the Paleolithic art of cave painting to new-media installations of the twenty-first century, this course offers a comprehensive investigation of the history of art. Students will also study art from diverse, global traditions, with units dedicated to the arts of Africa, Asia, the Americas, and Europe. As a college-level course, this class will rely on primary sources, academic articles and a course textbook. Throughout the year, students will also refine the skills associated with art-historical writing and criticism, and the class will make periodic trips to area museums. This course prepares students to take the Advanced Placement Examination in Art History.
ART 41. Advanced Placement Studio Art: Drawing. Year. Mrs. McCarthy. 4 meetings and one evening weekly. Open to Class I. Prerequisite: ART-20 or ART-21 and one or more Visual Arts courses. Students must state their interest during their junior year and will be selected for participation in the AP Studio Art course by the Department. Advanced Placement Studio Art: Drawing is a rigorous college-level course where students produce an extensive art portfolio of 18 works of art. Students who enroll in this course should do so with the understanding that they plan to participate in the Advanced Placement evaluation in early May. This course has been designed to meet the external criteria established by the College Board and will address both sections of Portfolio development: sustained investigation and quality. Through direct teacher instruction (4 classes per week plus life drawing), individual and group critiques, and independent focused studio research and practice, students will acquire the conceptual, technical and critical abilities to execute their personal ideas and complete a portfolio, which demonstrates mastery in concept, composition and execution. A gallery exhibition will be presented in late spring featuring each student’s work.
ART 42. Advanced Placement Studio Art: 2-D Photography Portfolio. Year. Mr. Callahan. 4 meetings and one evening weekly. Open to Class I. Prerequisite: ART-35 and one or more Visual Arts courses. Students must state their interest during their junior year and will be selected for participation in the AP Studio Art course by the department. Advanced Placement Studio Art: Photography is a rigorous college-level course in which students are required to produce a thematically diverse portfolio consisting of 18 exhibition quality photographs. Students who enroll in this course should do so with the understanding that they plan to participate in the Advanced Placement portfolio evaluation. This course has been designed to meet the external criteria established by the AP program, and as such, will entail a substantial time commitment. Students will address both sections of Portfolio development: sustained investigation and quality. The first semester will be dedicated to the breadth portfolio, which consists of assignments that focus primarily on design considerations as expressed through a diversity of photographic genres. The second semester is devoted to the development of a personal body of work that explores a particular subject, theme or concept in a coherent and compelling manner, demonstrating technical and critical mastery of the medium. This will involve learning to work in a more independent manner. The course will culminate in a gallery exhibition in the late spring featuring each student’s work.
ART 43. Advanced Placement Studio Art: 3-D Portfolio. Year. Ms. Potwin. 4 meetings and studio visits determined by Instructor. Open to Class I. Prerequisite: ART-29 or ART-30 and one or more Visual Arts courses. Students must state their interest during their junior year and will be selected for participation in the AP Studio Art course by the department. Advanced Placement Studio Art: 3-D Portfolio is a rigorous college-level course where students produce an extensive art portfolio of 18 works of art. Students who enroll in this course should do so with the understanding that they plan to participate in the Advanced Placement evaluation in early May. This course has been designed to meet the external criteria established by the College Board and will address both sections of Portfolio development: sustained investigation and quality. Through direct teacher instruction (4 classes per week plus studio visits), individual and group critiques, and independent focused studio research and practice, students will acquire the conceptual, technical and critical abilities to execute their personal ideas and complete a portfolio, which demonstrates mastery in concept, composition and execution. A gallery exhibition will be presented in late spring featuring each student’s work.
ART 59. Art and Life in Nineteenth-Century France. Spring. Ms. Munro. 4 meetings weekly. This course may be designated as a History course. Distributional credit in the Social Sciences, the Arts, or the Humanities. From Courbet’s Burial at Ornans to Monet’s Waterlilies and from the Arc de Triomphe to the Eiffel Tower, many of France’s most recognizable cultural contributions were executed during the nineteenth century. In this course, we will consider the historical backdrop against which these monuments were created, gaining insight into the unique conditions that led to a flourishing of culture and, ultimately, to a radical reconsideration of France’s established institutions. Making use of scholarly secondary sources and a wide range of primary sources—including art, essays and works of fiction—we will pursue an in-depth investigation of this period and its persistent impacts on the conditions of modern life.
The following offering does not receive academic credit, but it is required curriculum for all students in Class I.
PLQ. Plaque. Year. Mrs. McNally. 1 meeting weekly. Required of all members of Class I. Honoring one of the most powerful traditions of the School, each graduate of Middlesex creates a plaque that is displayed with those of their classmates. This course orients students to the plaque creation process, from technique to design to understanding each plaque’s place in the School’s tradition. A completed plaque is a requirement for graduation and members of Class I will remain enrolled in this course until their plaque is finished.