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The mission of Studio Angelico, a community of artists and educators, is to stimulate, challenge, support and educate students to become: 

  • educated viewers with visual literacy and critical thinking

  • professional artists with technical and creative direction

  • thoughtful and responsible citizens in a global community

We seek through dialogue and practice to work together within a liberal arts context to appreciate, understand and communicate the diversity and complexity of the human experience as expressed through the visual arts. 


The Art Department's primary goal is to develop competent, purposeful, and ethical visual artists. You will be encouraged to explore, research, create and pursue artworks of high quality. You will be expected to deal in materials and ideas, to explore past perceptions of the world of art and your interior and exterior worlds of imagination and values. In your junior year you will learn about careers and advanced degrees in the arts, explore the ethical implications of the copyright law of the United States, and produce a professional portfolio. In your senior year, you will work with a faculty member to mount a solo exhibition of your work. 


NASAD Accredited

Siena Heights University has been a member in good standing of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) since 1988.


Studio Angelico, the Art Department at Siena Heights University, features first rate art professors who will stoke your creativity and challenge you to create cutting-edge, innovative artworks reflecting your personal interests as well as the needs of the world. 

Named for 15th-century Dominican painter Fra Angelico, the Studio has been a center for art and art education in Adrian, Michigan, since the 1930's. Today, the Studio continues a long tradition of valuing:

  • a high level of productivity and creative experimentation

  • the development of each student's individual direction

  • purposeful artwork relevant to the world

  • ethical behavior 

  • technical skill

  • mastery of design

  • familiarity with a wide variety of artistic media

  • critical thinking skills, and

  • knowledge of the history of art and visual culture. 

Opportunities are available to combine majors, minors and certifications in areas such as business, psychology, chemistry, museum studies and teacher education, providing a solid foundation for careers in fields such as advertising, art therapy, art conservation, museum work, and art education. The studio also supports and encourages students to become professional artists. 


The Foundations Program at Siena Heights University is designed to bring you together with all other students majoring or minoring in the visual arts--to form a vital community that we call Studio Angelico. Through a variety of projects, this sequence of five courses provides you with fundamental knowledge of contemporary art practices and the creative skills needed to develop a personal direction and create and describe your own original works of art.

One of the distinctive features of Siena’s Foundations Program is the rigorous year-long series of two Core Concepts course that is team-taught by a studio professor and our art history professor. In these two courses, you will learn about contemporary art practices and make connections between the material practices of artists/designers and the research, writing, and critical thinking skills of art historians. Our goal is to help you to develop your own creativity by engaging in unusual yet purposeful projects while also developing your awareness of the elements and principles of design.

In the first of these two courses you will focus on developing creative strategies that will allow you to find original solutions to persistent visual problems. It will challenge you to explore a wide variety of art media, to develop your ability to speak articulately about your art, and to document, describe, and share your artwork with others. You will conduct Internet and library research, write brief papers, and engage in numerous creative studio exercises that involve various elements and principles of design. Right from the start, you will begin to build an art blog where you can upload and describe the key features of your work. The final project of this course asks you to:

  • investigate the works of artists who share your interests, concerns, purposes, or attitudes

  • develop an unprecedented work of art that reflects your research

  • experiment by creating several variant solutions to a problem and selecting the best solution from variant solutions

  • share your artwork, your ideas, your influences, your themes, your process, and your solutions in a well-designed digital presentation.

In the second course you will you will continue to build your portfolio of original works of art as we explore modern and contemporary art practices, ranging from Cubist and Surrealist collage to contemporary video and performance art. This course focuses on the theme of the body and the element of time so that you can experience a wide variety of ways that well-known artists have explored a single theme through scholarly research, media exploration, and a focus on key elements and principles of design. 

The remaining three Foundations courses ask you to explore the fundamentals of drawing, digital art, and sculpture. In this way, we make sure that all of our incoming students are welcomed into our community and that you are provided with a bedrock of ideas, skills, and practices on which you can build as you develop a personal direction and move into your more specialized, upper-level courses.