In the three-week visual arts program, you will study with highly talented faculty and students from around the world. You'll be a part of a community focused on ideas, craftsmanship, and the exchange of artistic values. Courses are designed to help you build fundamental skills and develop your creativity.
Students participate in at least five hours of studio time per day. During this time, you will work to develop your technique and artistic expression in your chosen concentration. Studio class options may include:
- Digital Arts
- Figure Drawing
- Metals Studio
- … and more. View the complete list.
You may also choose a one-hour elective, which is a great opportunity to explore a new visual arts medium or another arts area. Options include:
- Art History
- Creative Writing
- Introduction to Acting
All visual arts majors participate in the studio seminar, which allows students to choose from a wide range of workshops that they sign up for during the first week of classes. Also during this time, you will listen to visiting artist lectures, watch college presentations, and have the opportunity to have your portfolio reviewed by admission counselors from some of the top art colleges in the country.
At the end of the three-week session, you will exhibit the work you have created throughout the Dow Center for Visual Arts.
You will have the opportunity to submit your studio and elective class preferences after being accepted and enrolling in the program. If you would like to experience a greater variety of courses, you are encouraged to to attend both three-week sessions (discounts are offered to students who attend multiple sessions).
Resources and Facilities
The visual arts department is housed in the state-of-the-art Dow Center for Visual Arts. Its features include separate studio space for ceramics, sculpture, painting, drawing, metals, digital arts, photography, printmaking, and fibers. The most impressive facility of its kind at any secondary school in the country, it also includes a professional gallery space for exhibitions of work by students, faculty, and visiting artists.
This program does not require a portfolio for admission; however, if you would like to be considered for the Advanced Drawing: Conceptual Compositions two-hour studio course, you must submit the following materials after you complete the online application:
Portfolio materials (Advanced Drawing only)
- Prepare five images that represent your highest quality of work. We suggest three pieces be made from direct observation (drawn or painted from life, not copied from a photograph.)
Students who intend to apply to visual arts programs at college/university level may also be interested in our one-week institutes:
- Experimental Drawing and Painting
- Preparing a Portfolio for College
- College Counseling and Test Preparation
Interlochen is also home to the Arts Academy boarding high school, which offers a visual arts major for students in grades 9-12, as well as a post-graduate year.