Founded in 1857, San Jose State University is the oldest public university in California. Its Department of Art and Art History offers one of the largest, most diverse, academically accessible, and most highly selective public programs in art and design in the western U.S. It is the only CSU campus offering full BA, BFA, MA, and MFA studies to some 500+ graduates and undergraduate students per semester.
Located in San Jose, the most populous city in northern California and the population and psychological center of Silicon Valley, the Department of Art and Art History reflects the entrepreneurial and inventive nature of the region through the development of new programs, innovative collaborations with area corporations, and academic leadership in the fields of art, design, art history, and arts education.


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Upcoming & Current Events


November 12, 2019 – February 21, 2020, All Day
Natalie And James Thompson Art Gallery, Art Building #127
In a time of increasing divisiveness, separation, polarization, and fortified walls, artists can serve critical roles in building indirect associations, nurturing connections, and reminding us of the importance of considering a multitude of perspectives. BoundarySpan is a group exhibition at the Natalie and James Thompson Art Gallery displaying works by artists Michael Arcega, Jimin Lee, Paula Levine, Sherwin Rio, and Desiree Rios. Human fabricated, artificial borders have been formed politically time and again to divide…

Nicholas Douglass: Faces

January 23, 2020 – January 30, 2020, All Day
Art Building – Gallery 3
‘Faces’ is a compilation of two years of photography work that began at home and quickly developed into a fully functional freelance studio. Beginning with myself and branching out into a wide array of student models, the subjects have always been portraits. Using LEDs, various backdrops and a beginner kit camera my journey as a self taught photographer accelerated after pursuing a minor in photography. As a design major, I am inspired by the human…

Student Art Exhibition: Claudia Sanborn

January 23, 2020 – January 30, 2020, All Day
Gallery 5, Art Building #107
This exhibition follows the narrative of a character who moves from a place of sadness/hopelessness into a state of exploration. Through his exploration he comes to find beauty and light in a forest. The pieces within the exhibition are all screen printed; vibrant hues of pink and green create a contrast between the character and his newfound environment. The lush forest environment symbolizes a hope for a better future/life, that of which would not have…

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