Visual and Environmental Studies


Visual and Environmental StudiesVisual and Environmental Studies cultivates skills in both the practice and the critical study of the visual arts. Its components include photography, filmmaking, animation, video art, painting, drawing, printmaking and sculpture, as well as film and visual studies, critical theory, and the study of the built environment. VES’ small seminars, and practice-based art making and film/video production courses encourage creative experimentation within coursework and projects.  Department Website

VES studio arts classes are housed in the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, the only building in North America designed by Swiss architect Le Corbusier. VES concentrators are invited to participate in the many activities of the CCVA throughout the year, giving them the opportunity to learn about the inner workings of artistic, cinematic and cultural exhibitions in various types of media. The CCVA hosts the renowned Harvard Film Archive, one of the largest and most significant university-based motion picture collections in the country. The Harvard Film Archive’s 190-seat theatre, located on the lower level of the CCVA, screens films daily; including those that are part of VES’ film and visual studies courses.

There is a brief application process to concentrate in VES: Sophomores must have taken at least one VES course, or be in the process of taking one when they submit their application in October, and they must have a current GPA of 3.0 or above. For students wishing to focus in the studio art of filmmaking areas, an introductory studio or production course is required in advance of, or at the time of the application.