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Aboriginal Visual Arts (AVA)

Aboriginal Visual Artsprovide students with skill development in traditional Mi'kmaq,  Wolastokuyuik and Passamaquoddy craft coupled with a wide-ranging overview of the foundations of the visual arts. In addition to learning the Aboriginal history of the region, the program introduces students to contemporary Aboriginal visual arts practice and theory. Students work one-on-one with Aboriginal artists and also explore two of the College’s studios: Ceramics, Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Digital Media, Jewellery / Metal Arts, Photography and Textile Design. Students gain hands-on experience via project-based curriculum with an entrepreneurial focus.

Through applied research, critical discourse and self-reflection you will engage in creative problem solving. You learn about communications for visual artists, art history, drawing, and 2D/3D design. Assignments create a portfolio that celebrates the power of your imagination.

 

Areas of Study

  • Ash and Birch Bark Basketry
  • Quillwork and Beading
  • Drum and Traditional Paddle Making
  • Wood Carving and Sculpture
  • Drawing, Colour, 2D/3D Design Principles
  • Aboriginal History
  • Anthropology
  • Communications
  • Digital Media

 

Admission Requirements

      • One of the following official transcripts*:

·       High School Diploma

·       GED

·       Adult High School Diploma

OR

                                    Equivalent experience **

  • Please write a one-page letter of intent which includes your:

- Reasons for wanting to study with us,

- Interests in the arts (contemporary or historical), and

- Plans and goals for the future. 

  • ***$50 Application fee

*If your official public High School transcript indicates a modified level, your application will be processed under Other Admissions.

 **Equivalent experience is determined by the College assessing the applicant’s combination of learning and experience through recognition of prior learning.

***$50 Application fee is in Canadian dollars and applies to Canadian citizens and Permanent Residents, is non-refundable and is subject to change without notice. 

 

Go to the Admissions for more details

 

Portfolio Requirements

No portfolio is required to apply for the Aboriginal Visual Arts Program. Go to Admissions to learn more.

 

Course List

Fall 1

AVVA 1028 Aboriginal Media: Beads, Quills, Basketry and Drum Making

AHST 1052 Aboriginal Art History

AFFA 1024 Colour Study

AFFA 1057 Drawing from Observation

AFFA 1059 2D Design

COMM 1188 Communications and Student Success

Winter 1

AVVA 1029 Aboriginal Media: Traditional Ash Basketry and Pottery

AHST 1053 The Land, The Spirit, The Art: Aboriginal Artist at Work

AFFA 1030 The Creative Process

AFFA 1058 Drawing From Observation: Form and Expression

AFFA 1032 3D Design

AFFA 1062 Media Explorations III

Spring 1

AVVA 2903 Aboriginal Media: Major

AHST 2902 Archaeology: Prehistoric Craft and Culture in the Northeast

AVVA 2901 Aboriginal Iconography Mixed Media

Fall 2

AVVA 2907 Aboriginal Studio: Beads, Quills, Basketry and Drums

HIST 3905 Exploring Canadian Art

AVVA 2904 Traditional Oral Story Telling

ANTR 2900 Aboriginal Entrepreneurial Networking

DSGN 2901 3D Design: Shaping Space

COMM 2900 Communication for Visual Artists

Winter 2

AVVA 3903 Aboriginal Studio: Traditional Ash Basketry and Pottery

AHST 2901 Archaeology: Ethics and Practice

AVVA 3902 Aboriginal Carving and Sculpture

ANTR 3900 Entrepreneurship

AVVA 3909 Myth and Reality: Bringing Aboriginal History to Life

AVVA 3908 Designing Bodies

DRAW 3000 Painting in Acrylics

DSGN 3001 Creative Design Exploration

DSGN 3916 Book Art Design

Spring 2

AVVA 3907 Aboriginal Studio: Major

ENTR 3121 Digital Communication and Marketing

 

Career Possibilities

Graduates are prepared to establish their own small business, for employment, to continue in the Diploma Programs at NBCCD or at other leading institutions in Canada and beyond.

  • Artisans and crafts persons
  • Conservators and curators
  • Fabric, Fur and Leather Cutters
  • Painters, sculptors and other visual artists
  • Tailors, Dressmakers, Furriers and Milliners
  • Weavers, knitters and other fabric making occupations

Course Descriptions

Fall 1


AVVA 1028 Aboriginal Media: Beads, Quills, Basketry and Drum Making

 

In this course, students learn the traditional processes of beading, quillwork, birch bark basketry and drum making specific to the Wolastoqiyik, Mi’kmaq and Passamaquoddy First Nations Peoples. Through a series of projects they investigate these significant techniques and methodologies to develop important foundational skills. Students examine the concepts of reproduction and reinterpretation and integrate these perspectives into their finished products. 



AHST 1052 Aboriginal Art History

 

In this course students examine the art history of the Maliseet, Mi’kmaq and Passamaquoddy First Nations peoples. Through interactive lectures students analyze the way works of art, craft and design function as aesthetic objects and cultural artifacts. In addition, tutorial sessions, case studies and fieldtrips foster the development of skills related to analysis and interpretation. 

 

 

AFFA 1024 Colour Study

 

In this course, students apply the precepts of colour theory through the manipulation and application of colour. They identify specific colour relationships, contrasts and harmonies as they become familiar with mixing complex colour. In addition, they investigate how artists and designers use colour and in turn how people respond to colour. Through the production of specific assignments, students use their understanding of the physiology and psychology of colour to build a reference portfolio for future studies. 



AFFA 1057 Drawing from Observation


In this course, students acquire the ability to draw from observation through the application and exploration of drawing elements, principles and strategies. They produce drawings that use the basic elements including line, shape, space, and value as well as apply principles such as composition and perspective. In addition, they experiment with and apply a variety of materials such as pencil, charcoal and inks. Through progressive assignments, students prepare for continued exploration in drawing for personal enjoyment and development, and /or further studies. 

 

AFFA 1059 2D Design


In this course, students utilize the principles of 2D design to create the illusion of form on a flat surface and explore the fundamentals of composition. They are introduced to the elements and compositional principles of design. Using a range of materials such as ink, paint, collage and mixed media, students investigate visual problem-solving and effective decision making where 2D design is used as a tool to communicate conceptual ideas. 

 

COMM 1188 Communications and Student Success


In this course, students acquire the communication skills essential to success in the study of visual arts. Using a critical approach, they respond to articles, imagery and discussion topics, to develop English language conventions including skills related to argumentation, exposition, and persuasion. Through a series of assignments, students generate a collection of written, verbal and visual assignments that reflect effective use of English language, style and form. 

 

Winter 1

 

AVVA 1029 Aboriginal Media: Traditional Ash Basketry and Pottery


In this course, students make traditional ash basketry and pottery with techniques specific to the Wolastoqiyik, Mi’kmaq and Passamaquoddy First Nations Peoples. They examine the similarities and commonalities found in Aboriginal craft and integrate a variety of perspectives into their finished products. By investigating these techniques and methodologies students further their skills related to reproduction and reinterpretation. 

 

AHST 1053 The Land, The Spirit, The Art: Aboriginal Artist at Work


In this course, students examine how the history of the Maliseet, Mi’kmaq and Passamaquoddy Peoples was shaped by their spiritual relationship with the land in which they lived. In addition, they will learn the effects of war and European contact had on the development of the crafts industry for trade as a supplement to their livelihoods. Through a series of written and oral assignments student will gain confidence in communicating their viewpoints on these important issues to Aboriginal peoples. 

 

AFFA 1030 The Creative Process


In this course, students integrate an analytical approach to solving visual problems with the production of projects in various media. Specifically, by evaluating creative concepts that encompass research, visual and critical problem solving, critiques and self-reflection, they develop and refine their approach to critical analysis. To facilitate successful learning, students engage in class presentations, selected projects and editing of personal work for a portfolio. 

 

AFFA 1058 Drawing From Observation: Form and Expression


In this course, students build upon their introductory drawing skills by increasing accuracy (technical skill), refining personal style and using drawing as a means of creative visual expression. By focusing on strategies aimed at the need for enquiry, students create interpretive and expressive responses to the visual. Students use a variety of approaches that address complex subject matter, in particular the human figure, using wet and dry drawing materials. Through progressive assignments, students prepare for continued exploration in drawing for personal enjoyment and development, and /or further studies. 

 


AFFA 1032 3D Design


In this course, students apply the elements and principles of 3D design by creating objects that communicate ideas in the physical form. These compositions are made through the exploration of materials requiring visual problem-solving skills that consider context, content and meaning. With ongoing discussion, they develop effective critique techniques through systematic analytical processes. 

 

AFFA 1062 Media Explorations III

 

In this course, students experience various media techniques and gain insight into the College’s diverse studios which include: Ceramics, Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Integrated Media, Jewellery/Metal Arts, Photography and Textiles. In Media Explorations III, students explore the last two studios of the six studios they will experience over the academic year. This course is designed to familiarize students with a broad range of visual media and studio environments and assist them in determining their area of specialization for further and more comprehensive studies. 

 

Spring 1

 

AVVA 2903 Aboriginal Media: Major

 

In this course students establish a primarily studio focus, or a blend, in the following traditional media areas: ash basketry, beading, birch bark basketry, clay and quillwork. Utilizing the traditional teachings from the first year of the program students explore in-depth experimental approaches in hands-on assignments. This course provides ample time to foster individual growth and creative development. 

 

AHST 2902 Archaeology: Prehistoric Craft and Culture in the Northeast


In this course, students gain an overview of archaeological research in North American Northeast (Maine and the Maritimes) through practical archaeological exercises, class discussions, applied research projects and field trips. They develop archaeological skills used to understand the past such as illustration, photography and the re-creation of artifacts. Students discover what can be interpreted about the behaviour of people from archaeological sites and artifacts. This course is designed for students with little or no background in archaeology or prehistoric Native Culture. 

 

AVVA 2901 Aboriginal Iconography Mixed Media

 

In this course, students research the ancient Aboriginal language of the Atlantic Region and recreate visual representations using contemporary mixed media. They will take an in-depth look at the images and symbols of the century old petroglyphs and pictographs in our area. Through interactive lectures students will experience the legends and myths of Wolastoqiyik, Mi’kmaq and Passamaquoddy Peoples that are evidenced by the rock carvings and paintings they left behind. 

 

 

Fall 2

 

 

AVVA 2907 Aboriginal Studio: Beads, Quills, Basketry and Drums

 

In this course, students utilize traditional methods and techniques to create traditional beading, quillwork, birch bark basketry and drum making by learning through accomplished Maliseet and Mi’kmaq artisans of the Atlantic Region. Students participate in 2 seven-week sessions that feature hands-on demonstrations and lectures. Through the development of their projects, students will be challenged and encouraged to push their skills to new heights by producing arts and crafts representative of First Nations in Atlantic Canada.

 

HIST 3905 Exploring Canadian Art

 

In this course students are exposed to a wide spectrum of Canadian artists and encouraged to explore their cultural differences and approach to art. Students gain valuable information on what is appropriate and accepted in cultural communities and society in general. Internationally known artists and Canada’s many cultures provide interesting and unique profiles for study. 

 

AVVA 2904 Traditional Oral Story Telling

 

In this course, students learn to analyze and recount ancient Aboriginal myths, legends and history that have been passed down from generation to generation. Traditional oral story telling continues to be the most important means of communication among First Nations People. Through a series of assignments students will research and gather stories from their communities and express these important legends and myths through oral, visual and written form. 

 

ANTR 2900 Aboriginal Entrepreneurial Networking


In this course, students learn the social and business networking skills required to become an entrepreneur in today’s society. They interact with Aboriginal business professionals and alternative funding agencies to understand the dedication, commitment and creativity needed to succeed. Through a series of projects students will develop a personal business concept for future self-employment. In addition, they are introduced to business concepts such as; personal cash flow, creating a budget, business financing and resources, and most importantly, utilizing the Aboriginal business community for creative problem solving. 

 

DSGN 2901 3D Design: Shaping Space


In this course, students explore the broader world of design focusing on themes of movement, colour and light. With consideration of spatial relationships, students combine a wide range of materials in the development of projects. Engaging in lectures and discussions that examine the theories of historic and contemporary 3D design, they develop an individual design aesthetic which is accompanied by research and documentation. Combining various aspects of the making of objects, students are encouraged to use materials from their own disciplines. In addition, peer presentations and critical visual analysis are emphasized.

 


COMM 2900 Communication for Visual Artists


In this course, students tap into the world of social media, in the form of an on-line presence, to initiate their critical opinions and professional communications. They create an online archive of professional documents including digital images of their work, biographical information and artist statements. Students write responses to topics pertinent to their practice communicating their ideas about visual art. In addition, they learn the steps to apply for a relevant scholarship.

 

Winter 2

 

AVVA 3903 Aboriginal Studio: Traditional Ash Basketry and Pottery


In this course, students will refine their abilities in creating ash basketry and pottery using traditional methods and techniques. This will be achieved by working in direct contact with accomplished Maliseet and Mi’kmaq artisans of the Atlantic Region. Students will participate in 2 seven-week sessions that feature hands-on demonstrations, lectures and projects furthering the growth and development of their artistic practice. 

 

AHST 2901 Archaeology: Ethics and Practice


In this course, students further their understanding of the prehistoric cultures and technology of the North American Northeast by focusing on ethical issues relating to repatriation, stewardship and accountability. They explore these concepts through a series of exercises involving recreating artifacts and leading seminar classes. Emphasis is placed on the ethical issues that surround working with materials from the ancient past. This survey course is designed for students with basic background in archaeology and prehistoric Native culture. 

 

AVVA 3902 Aboriginal Carving and Sculpture


In this course, students will learn the basic materials, tools and techniques used in the creation of Aboriginal sculpture. Through the process of adding and subtracting form, each student will carve individual projects that focus on traditional Aboriginal themes. Students will learn how to identify carving materials, maintain tools and work safely and effectively whether working individually or in a group environment. 

 

ANTR 3900 Entrepreneurship

 

In this course, students will develop a detailed business/career plan based on research from the ANTR 2900 Aboriginal Entrepreneurial Networking course. Students will interact with local Aboriginal businesses and funding agencies in the development of their personalized plan. Through a series of presentations and exercises, students will learn to confidently present and discuss their business and career ideas to a variety of people. 

 

AVVA 3909 Myth and Reality: Bringing Aboriginal History to Life


In this course, students research the myths and legends of the Aboriginal Peoples of Atlantic Canada to bring history to life by translating them into sculptures, etchings and design work. Through the study of original documents, written and oral histories, images and artifacts, students reflect on the history, deep spirituality, ancient stories and legends of the Mi’kmaq, Maliseet and Passamaquoddy Peoples. In addition, students gain a unique appreciation of how Aboriginal Peoples’ environment was incorporated into their ideologies and the potential impact it can have on their creative process. 

 

AVVA 3908 Designing Bodies


In this course, students create artwork using influences from the traditional and contemporary practices of body adornment/modification. With an aesthetic and anthropological perspective, they research specific Aboriginal practices in body art, such as tattooing, piercing, mehndi (henna), branding and scarification. Students gain a new perspective on this ancient activity, incorporating the ideologies into individual projects as well as communicating their ideas in a clear professional manner. 

 

DRAW 3000 Painting in Acrylics


In this course, students learn the fundamental principles of painting through creating images in the medium of acrylic paint. Assignments explore both the historical and contemporary approaches of the painting process. Students have the opportunity to develop an independent body of work which is informed by experimentation and critique, and in addition, is related to a personal area of interest. 

 

DSGN 3001 Creative Design Exploration


In this course, students focus on their creative skills and innovation abilities to produce original designs that are realized into 2D/3D product prototypes. Using multiple models of problem solving strategies, students explore form, function and a variety of materials, to apply new skill sets to their methodologies. Students overcome visual and conceptual challenges by working in interdisciplinary teams. 

 

DSGN 3916 Book Art Design


In this course, students create hand bound books using various unique tools, materials and processes. Through an exploration of book structures and construction methods, they are introduced simple to complex binding techniques. In addition, students are encouraged to explore the aesthetic qualities of the book through 2D and 3D embellishment techniques including printed material, transfer techniques and hand stitched embellishments. 

 

Spring 2

 

AVVA 3907 Aboriginal Studio: Major


In this course, students focus on Aboriginal media specific to their area of interest to create a body of work that is a culmination of their creative experiences in the program. With ongoing guidance from the instructor, they discuss direction, research, design, and time management with emphasis on group interaction with their peers. The work that is produced in this course will be at a professional level of technical skill, aesthetic awareness, and personal creativity. 

 

ENTR 3121 Digital Communication and Marketing

 

In this course, students develop a working knowledge of digital technologies to develop a comprehensive individual portfolio. This includes learning to use a digital camera, create professional lighting, and be able to manipulate images using relevant software. Using their own images and biographical information, students design and construct a website using the latest software available. In addition, they investigate the value of internet technologies in the context of e-commerce, marketing and promotion in preparation for a career in the visual arts. 

 

 

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