The Furman Art Department is a vibrant collaborative environment that encourages creative innovation and entrepreneurship, analysis, making and reflection.


As a department, we cultivate the intrinsic power of art to create connections and communities that express and transcend identities, ideologies, geographies, and timelines.

To Enact this Mission, our Art History Program is Guided by these Principles:

Visual images and objects weave together a history of human ideas and developments. We position art as a tool to help us grapple with our most pressing issues and speak to our past, our present, and our futures.

We celebrate the profound powerful capacity of art and objects to affect, inspire, embody, and enrich all aspects of our daily lives.

We proclaim the ability of art to represent the complexity and diversity of lived experiences and work to lift up those which have been historically marginalized or silenced.

We dedicate ourselves to the teaching of critical looking, persuasive argumentation, and analytical skills, in addition to fostering lifelong curiosity and the willingness to question inherited conceptions of art and culture.

In delving into its histories, we strive to use art to better understand and respond to our changing world.

Further, our Studio Art Program is Guided by these Principles:

Holistic making across a broad-based studio practice: We believe the study and practice of art to be holistic, informed by individual and collective experience, contexts, and cross-disciplinary approaches.

Ideas matter: We believe that students’ ideas matter and encourage this through an emphasis on ideation, innovation, empathy, and critical thinking.

Craft as communication: We acknowledge the importance of technique, craftspersonship and seeing across our disciplines as a means of building a communicative language for the visual arts and beyond.

Transformative real-world experiences: We build community and facilitate unique and creative professional experiences that expand beyond our classrooms, such as internships, creative research, exhibiting artwork, study abroad, and more, in order to prepare students for the professional world.

Innovation happens here: We exist at the forefront of new ideas, cultivating a culture of creativity and innovation that harnesses the generative impact that art and design have across space and time.

You belong here: We acknowledge the many perspectives and talents required to excel in the field. We strive to include students across different backgrounds, creating a supportive and welcoming environment that fosters belonging and improves learning.

Critical reflection and feedback: We view the role of the artist and designer as one rooted in reflection, where critique and feedback are placed in context to the histories of thoughts and actions shared across artists before, currently, and after us.

Our Vision for the Department:

Art leads the way.

The Art department aspires to actively contribute to all aspects of campus life as a site of pluralistic expression and exchange amongst students, professional artists, and the larger communities. We commit ourselves to celebrating the power of the visual as a tool to facilitate lifelong learning, creative thinking, community-making, advocacy, and communication of ideas that have meaning and consequence.

Department of Art and Art History Statement on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion:

The faculty and staff in the Art Department at Furman University are committed to building a diverse, equitable, antiracist, and non-discriminatory environment in which all members are valued and supported. As a tool of creative expression, we believe that art, in study and practice, has the potential to connect people of diverse backgrounds because it explores aspects that are unique and integral to the human experience: imagination, memory, and identity formation.  Artistic representations of all kinds embody personal and cultural beliefs, values, and ideology, and as such, we acknowledge and are actively working to dismantle the systemic injustices and prejudices that are often preserved and promoted through works of art and architecture. In our classes and departmental programming, we commit to bringing awareness to and amplifying the stories of individuals and communities who have been historically marginalized in academic scholarship, museum collections and exhibitions, and artists’ shows. We recognize that our core value of inclusive and equitable teaching requires the thoughtful inclusion of diverse perspectives that aim to combat harmful stereotypes and instill a sense of intrinsic self-worth, belonging, and resiliency in our students, staff, and faculty.

The Art Department is working to expand its curriculum and programming to bring new content and perspectives to our community. These steps have already begun to take place through the redesign of the art history curriculum, which now emphasizes cross-cultural connections across multiple chronologies in a global context. As we plan future gallery rotations and artist- in- residency opportunities, we are shaping these programs to better support university-wide initiatives aimed at enhancing the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion along with promoting anti-racist policies and practices across the campus, including Furman’s Task Force on Slavery and Justice.

Program Overview

Program Overview

From diving into our diverse selection of courses to ultimately declaring your major, find out all about our Studio Art and Art History major requirements.

Thompson Art Gallery

Thompson Art Gallery

The Thompson Art Gallery features a variety of exhibitions throughout the academic year and is located in the Thomas Anderson Roe Art Building on Furman University's campus.

Student Experiences

Student Experiences

Students connect coursework to meaningful experiences through research, internships, study away programs and community learning projects.

Annual Sleep When You're Dead 24-Hour Design Competition

Annual Sleep When You're Dead 24-Hour Design Competition

Sign up for our Annual Sleep When You're Dead (SWYD) 24-Hour Design Competition. Every year students from all over campus lose one night of sleep embracing design and creating work that solves problems and tells stories.



Our low student-to-faculty ratio combined with our diverse, talented team of professors and staff, are just a couple of the reasons why our art program is one of the most acclaimed in the Southeast.

Student work

Student work

Want to see more work from our current students and alumni? Click the link below to explore our student gallery page!

  • 9:1
    Student Faculty Ratio
  • 70%
    of Art Majors are double majors
  • 90%
    of our Art Majors have had an internship by the time they have graduated

Read Our Blog

What Can I Do With a Degree in Art?

Discovering your future career with an art degree is not always a straight forward path. While your mind may immediately gravitate towards marketing your own work as a fine artist, many other career options exist....

Continue Reading >

Are you interested in donating to the Art Department? Use the link below to give to the Furman Art Department. In the "designation" field, select "other" and in the "other" field, specify Art Department. Thank you for your support!

Contact Us

Contact Us

Have a question or need further information? We're here to help.