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Visual Arts

Visual Arts at The Fessenden School

Through the visual arts curriculum at our Massachusetts independent school, boys learn and develop skills in a variety of mediums, including drawing, painting, and ceramics. Lower School boys focus on fundamentals like properly holding paint brushes and working with clay. In Middle School, students begin to engage in complex studio art projects.  In the Upper School, boys can choose a specific area of studio art or try a new elective, like Digital Media, Film Appreciation, or Woodworking.

Fessenden boys also benefit from exhibitions in our Munro Gallery. It hosts several shows each year featuring local artists and Fessenden faculty and staff—and sometimes the students themselves! Boys in all three divisions get to know the artists, learning about their inspirations and processes through workshops and gallery walks. Art teachers often create lessons around gallery shows, encouraging the boys to create art of their own that uses the featured artist’s medium or style.   

Lower school art
Student painting with teacher

Lower School Visual Arts

Lower School art students are introduced to various materials and are encouraged to explore their creativity through a series of guided art sessions. Matching their energy and developmental levels, students take part in collaborative and individual projects which focus primarily on the process. As their skills progress, they practice a variety of techniques and styles and learn about different genres and artists.

Middle school art
Close up of hands drawing with ink

Middle School Visual Arts

In Middle School, boys explore a variety of visual art mediums such as drawing, painting, three-dimensional sculpture, and ceramics. Boys express their thoughts with images, colors, and textures through an iterative process, and articulate their process through verbal reflection. They also have opportunities to showcase their work to the Fessenden community throughout the school year.

Upper School Art

Upper School Visual Arts Electives

Students explore digital storytelling using film, photography, graphic design, and animation and create multimedia projects using professional software.

Studio Art encompasses a variety of artistic mediums, including drawing, painting, printmaking, and sculpture. Students learn core technical concepts and develop a greater appreciation for the visual arts. Boys also showcase their work for the greater Fessenden community throughout the school year.

While exploring the craft of woodworking, boys learn to use and care for basic hand tools and power tools. Each semester’s projects focus on a different theme, such as wooden toys, kitchen items, or office solutions. Students lead development of their projects from design through to the finished product.