Department of Art

Art Studio - Oil Painting

The Painting curriculum begins with an emphasis on the use of oil paint in rendering three-dimensional forms and space from direct observation. An embrace of process and a willingness to change are the main objectives at this early stage of study. Abstract and nonobjective forms of painting are also extensively covered, explored and encouraged. Additional materials and processes are continually introduced, including: acrylics, acrylic mediums, collage, image transfers and encaustics.

Exposure to contemporary painters is interwoven and integral to the curriculum. Assignments are geared toward developing the students’ problem solving skills. As the projects become more open ended, students decide whether to work with representation, nonobjective imagery, or alternative forms of painting. Advanced painting is contingent on the students’ self-motivation and requires personal investigation into the formal and conceptual aspects of their work.


Julie Mahoney
Office: 36 Garwood Hall
Meet the Faculty

Degree Plan

There are two degrees available in the Studio Art areas: 

  • Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Art - Art Studio
  • Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Art - Art Studio

For more information about Course Descriptions and Programs of Study.


Painting facilities at Western Illinois University are housed in Garwood Hall. The painting studio measures 21' x 70'. This is a large natural light painting studio. The space houses Klopfenstein easels, glass palettes and equipment storage. A separate secure office houses hand tools and a large collection of still life objects. Several large North-facing windows provide the students with the opportunity to utilize natural light in addition to adequate available artificial light sources. The studio is equipped with a solvent recycling station and has storage for solvents and mediums. The room includes a sink and painting racks sufficient for storing student work. The painting program provides six individual studio spaces in the basement of Garwood Hall for selected painting majors. This space measures 21' x 45' and is usually divided among the BFA senior painting students.