Visual & Performing Arts

While all of our middle school students participate in an exploratory program in Studio Art, Ceramics, and Performing Arts, our Upper School students have the opportunity to explore diverse specialized offerings through dynamic courses led by practicing artists. Our Visual Arts students have regular opportunities to show their work, whether in our on-campus gallery (The Solarium at Houghton Hall) or other local galleries.

At the end of each trimester, our Performing Arts students share their projects, their voices, and their scenes with the entire Knox Community. These end-of-trimester recitals are the highlights of our curricular program in Performing Arts here at Knox. Students with an interest in applying their performing skills to theatrical production have the opportunity to join Knox Theatre. Click here for more information about our outstanding theatre program.

Visual Arts Courses

(494) Media Arts
This full-year introductory course focuses on the practical operation and creative possibilities of digital photography and video using a Digital SLR. This course explores digital capture, computer editing using Adobe Photoshop, and output techniques utilizing professional Epson printers. Students should have a digital camera with manual capabilities which will shoot stills and video. Open to Upper School students with an interest in photography.

(516) Photography I
This course serves as a full-year introduction to photography as a fine arts medium with a focus on black & white 35mm film shooting, developing, and printing. This course emphasizes the technical aspects of photography through demonstration, readings, and hands-on experience. Open to Upper School students with an interest in photography.

(490) Media Arts II
This course combines the skills learned in Photo I and Media arts and moves students to the advanced mechanics and aesthetics of digital and 35 mm photography digital imaging skills and output techniques. Open to the Upper School students who have successfully passed Photography I and/or Media Arts.

(509) Studio Art I
This course allows students to examine the major concepts of studio art. They begin with drawing then move on to explore painting, printmaking, and various other media of their choice. While learning and improving their technical skills, they will also be learning the concepts of line, spatial relationships, and creative expression. Students will progress from the cornerstone of art (drawing) through to printmaking. Open to Upper School students with an interest in painting or drawing.

(495) Studio Art II
Studio Art II allows students to continue to develop the skills gained in Studio Art I and move on to generating pieces that reflect their personal creative style. Possible media include acrylic, watercolor, and tempera painting, as well as printmaking, quilling, batiking, and collaging. Open to Upper School students with an interest in painting or drawing who have completed Studio Art I.

(565) Ceramics
Ceramics is a full-year course designed to develop the students' interest and skills in the creation of ceramic arts, including the artistic process from conception to firing. Students will also discover major artists and explore how their work influenced the history of ceramic arts. Open to Upper School students with an interest in ceramics.

(498) AP Studio Art
This course is meant for students who need to develop a portfolio for acceptance to competitive art schools or who are interested in a rigorous and focused study in art. Students will develop a quality portfolio that demonstrates mastery of concept, composition and execution in 2-D design, and will be submitted to the College Board for credit.

Performing Arts Courses

(570) Choir
This course is designed to develop students' understanding of the art of vocal performance, particularly as a choir. Students in this course explore vocal music from various periods, styles, and cultures, and develop an understanding of the original social and cultural context for each piece of music studied. They work to develop their ability to sight-sing, building on a strong foundation in music theory, through the study of solfege. Students also build confidence in their skills through regular performances at school events and at each trimester recital. Students also attend two local concerts featuring major choral repertoires. Open to Upper School students with an interest in singing and the ability to match pitch

(525) Theatre
Theatre is a full-year course designed to develop students' understanding of the various arts involved in the creation and production of theatre. Theatre students explore various crafts associated with the arts of acting, playwriting, designing, and directing. Students develop their understanding of the business of theatre and the variety of jobs available to those who have a passion for theatre and theatrical production. Students present their work at each trimester recital and attend two professional theatre productions. Open to Upper School students with an interest in theatre; preference given to students in grades 11 and 12.

(572) Stagecraft
Stagecraft is a full-year course designed to introduce students to the theatrical arts associated with the technical elements of production, including scenic, costume, and lighting design; set construction and painting; lighting hanging, focusing, and gelling; and costume construction and alteration. Students learn to create scenographic models, ground plans, and front elevations. They provide all technical support for Knox Theatre productions and serve as technicians when appropriate for school events. Students also attend two professional theatre productions. Open to Upper School students with an interest in backstage work, including working with power tools, computers, and lighting equipment.

(573) Advanced Placement (AP) Music Theory
This is a full-year course designed to prepare students for the Advanced Placement exam in Music Theory. Students will challenge themselves to develop a keen awareness of musical techniques present in significant works of the major musical periods and genres. Open to Upper School students in grades 11 and 12 who sing and/or play an instrument; placement at the discretion of the Chair of the Visual and Performing Arts Department.

Department Events

Click here to read more about our student photography exhibition at fotofoto Gallery in Huntington Village, New York.

Our Faculty

Patrick Barry

Patrick Barry

Titles: Chair, Visual and Performing Arts Department, Manager, Wm. Turner Shoemaker Theater
Karyn Cernera-Bush

Karyn Cernera-Bush

Titles: Director of Marketing & Communications, Teacher
Patricia Colombraro

Patricia Colombraro

Titles: Photography & Media Arts Teacher, Solarium Art Gallery Curator
Grace Fastenberg

Grace Fastenberg

Titles: Studio Art & Ceramics Teacher