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A strong foundation

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Dream Big


Total Immersion.

You might be pretty sure about who you are as an artist. You might even be sure which medium you will be working in for the rest of your career. That is why we feel it is our obligation as teachers and fellow artists to shake things up a bit and introduce you to mediums and ideas you never before considered.

We also feel that no matter how talented you are as an artist, the more time you spend learning from other artists and their work, and about historical, cultural and personal influences, the more powerful an artist you can become. This is why we believe in a strong foundation followed by a year of exploration: two semesters of visual fundamentals—drawing, color theory, 2-D, 3-D—extensive studio work, seeing, questioning and collaborating; followed by two semesters of individual experimentation and discovery that will support and guide your education at MECA.


  • Faculty
  • Pilar Nadal MFA ’13

    MECA is a small school and you can really find a place for yourself. One of the best aspects is the . . .

    Canandaigua is the Seneca word for “the chosen spot.” Pilar Nadal left Canandaigua, her hometown in Upstate New York, for her chosen spot: MECA. During her first visit, she was immediately drawn to both the program and the community. “I was really impressed with the facilities and the idea that everything was in one building . . .Read More

  • Philip Brou

    ON HIS ART I love the contradictory nature of painting. It is a language that constantly undermines itself. . . .

    ON HIS ART I love the contradictory nature of painting. It is a language that constantly undermines itself. In my opinion, painting is not a discipline suited for finding solutions, but it is unbelievably good at perpetually generating questions. ON MAKING ART IN MAINE Last weekend I went for a long walk on a beach and did […]Read More

  • Paul Gebhardt ʼ96

    Artists have so much to offer the world. Their creative approach is needed in all of our cultural, economic . . .

    What drives your need for/belief in service and public engagement? I am most interested in that intersection between a creative action and a social need. I am curious about how art can bring awareness, challenge an assumption, open a discourse about a difficult topic—like poverty or food security—and solve a practical problem. I am . . .Read More

  • Michel Droge MFA '10

    Adjunct Assistant Professor of Printmaking Michel Droge and students in her FY-In class, Climate Change and . . .

    Adjunct Assistant Professor of Printmaking Michel Droge and students in her FY-In class, Climate Change and Maine Island Communities, partnered with The Island Institute to study climate change and its impact in Casco Bay. The goal was to bring local fishermen, artists and scientists together through a mutual concern for the future . . .Read More

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  • Formal

    The Foundation Program gives students an in-depth experience in composition. This includes developing a vocabulary of composition’s core terms, principles and relationships and then using this vocabulary as the basis from which form is created and analyzed. This also involves learning to combine and advance compositional skills.

  • Conceptual

    The Foundation Program introduces students to the various processes of design methodology through which composition is realized. These processes, transferable to all disciplines and mediums, include research, material exploration, making, editing, remaking and critiquing. Students explore the relationships of form and content. Students are also exposed to Public Engagement opportunities where they complete projects in conjunction with a community partner. Students may choose to pursue Public Engagement as a Minor.

  • Technical

    Students learn to compose in two-dimensional, three dimensional and digital space. They gain proficiency working with a wide range of materials and processes. They learn to assess the level and effect of craftsmanship associated with these materials and processes. They also understand the importance of following best practices in safely working in a professional studio.

  • Professional

    Students learn to present work in a professional manner. This includes both the physical logistics of presenting work as well as developing the ability to use Foundational vocabulary to discuss their work with intention and precision. They demonstrate strengthened levels of focus, discipline, persistence and patience. Students develop an awareness of the transferability and versatility of objectives from their Foundation classes into any major within the college and any direction their work may go. Additionally, the foundation program introduces professional practice objectives such as developing an online presence, public speaking, documenting work, and how to complete an internship.


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What do our alumni do?

Statistics from the 2015 Strategic National Arts Alumni project (SNAAP)

Did you know?

55% is the national average for arts alumni that work as professional artists.

45% is the national average for arts alumni that are self employed, independent contractors, or freelance workers.


Work as professional artists


Work as graphic designers, illustrators, or art directors


Founded a business


Work as craft artists


Work as fine artists


Work as art teachers


Pursued an MFA after graduation


Are self-employed, independent contractors or freelance workers


Make art in their personal time

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