Department of Art and Art Professions

Visionary Studio - Art Education

Saturday Art Workshop

Visionary Studio: Saturday Art Workshop is an 8-week program that combines the excitement of creating art with issues in social justice. Saturday mornings, from 10am-12pm, teens research one of four significant social themes (such as imagining the human body, street art, power and the symbol of the fist, and the water crisis) and discover a rich array of innovative, multidisciplinary approaches through which they can visually express their ideas.

Classes are taught by teams of graduate students completing their Certification in Art Education program at New York University. Together, students and teachers consider ways in which artists can and do influence society, and experiment with techniques that include drawing, painting, printmaking, video, photography, 3-dimensional media, and installation. These workshops challenge students to think outside of traditional artistic media and explore how artistic boundaries and influence can be stretched to include what has historically been excluded. As part of the program students participate in a final exhibition inviting a wide audience of parents, friends, teachers, and NYU faculty, to see their work.

High School students do not need a portfolio to apply to the Saturday Art Workshop - classes are free-of-charge, and open to students with all levels of art experience!

Curriculum Archive:
Fall 2013
Fall 2012

Fall 2011
Fall 2010

Fall 2014 Visionary Studio Themes:
Saturday Art Workshop Curriculum

Waste Not, Want Not
Consumption and waste are part of our everyday lives. As a culture we produce much that we throw away, from household garbage to toxic industrial waste. Increasingly, technological waste is becoming commonplace as we upgrade our computers and other digital equipment. Since the energy crisis in 1973 the term recycling has become part of our understanding of waste. Where does our garbage go? Artists have responded to the topic in a variety of ways - by making art with recycled materials, visually documenting what happens to toxic waste, as well as raising awareness about the labor that goes behind waste management. This class will look at waste from different social, cultural and political perspectives while giving students a chance to make artwork in a variety of media. Students will each make a final work for exhibition that reflects on the concept of waste from a personal perspective.

It’s How You Say It
Many visual artists play with words and language. In their work, artists explore how we learn about the world we live in and ourselves by combining visual images and text in different ways. Many visual artists experiment with language to create new ways we read or make meaning with text and image. Others play with media forms that combine image and text, such as books, visual poetry, alphabets, or advertising. Increasingly, artists are using text and image or only text to open dialogue about pertinent issues in our world. In this class, students will have a chance to see how artists play with language in a variety of ways and experiment with different forms of art that include text and language. In a culminating work for the exhibition, students will generate their own statement about the world using image and text while experimenting with different art forms such as bookmaking or advertising.

What if we had special powers that allowed us to do super-human things? What powers and possibilities have superheroes in cartoons and comic strips represented over time and how have they wielded their powers to do good or evil in the world? The superheroes we create can tell us about how we want to be in the world, but also about the problems and concerns of our society. Artist activist have used superheroes to speak about social concerns in communities and world. This class explores how artists, graphic novelists and activists have created a cast of superheroes that reflect real and imagined situations and the ways that we can change the situations to make a better world.

Put it on Repeat

From vinyl record covers to music videos, artists have worked with music as both subject and medium. How have artists translated sound in visual ways, and helped us see our music with fresh eyes and ears? How has technology influenced the way we make, listen to, and appreciate music and given artists new ways to help us hear and see music and sound? Artists have also used sound to address pressing issues in our society and world from issues of freedom of speech to terrorism.  In this class, students will look at a range of artists who work with sound in contemporary ways, and experiment with new ways to make visual art with sound.

Self-Portraits: From Rock Paintings to Selfies
The selfie is the most common form of picture taking today. We all use our phones and cameras to document who we are and where we’ve been. The self-portrait is the oldest form of art - from the first cave paintings to Facebook - humans like to make pictures of themselves! Contemporary artists have used the self portraits to address issues related to cultural identity and politics. How and why do we define ourselves through self-portraits? How and why do artists present themselves in their artwork? This class will look at the diverse ways artists address both personal and social, cultural, and political issues using self-portraits. Students will be able to explore what self-portraits mean to them in today’s world.

Fall 2014 Schedule

This program is an 8-Saturday commitment on the following dates:

10/18, 10/25, 11/1, 11/8, 11/15, 11/22, 12/6, 12/13


Plus Sunday 12/14 reception for exhibition

Note: No class over the Thanksgiving Holiday weekend.

Exhibition Details:

Application Procedure

Apply Online! 
If you use this online application, you do not need to send anything else.

If it's not possible for you to Apply Online, contact or 516-410-0958 for alternate instructions.

You will be emailed with a confirmation of your acceptance and workshop choice, as well as directions and information about the first day.

For Additional Information

Sam Englander, Program Coordinator