Our individualized program in metalsmithing emphasizes the development of aesthetic values, critical thinking and dialogue, technical skills and personal commitment to the craft. A broad spectrum of aesthetic principles are stressed, from traditional forms within the media to modern experiential approaches, all leading to highly individualized work in both precious metals and iron. The program environment is one of diversity, seeking students with a range of interests, backgrounds and goals for achievement. The metals program at SIUC has developed links in Europe, the Pacific Rim and Mexico that may provide opportunities for student participation. The perseverance and focus of our students has led many of our graduates to a range of careers in academia and museum work, as well as that of a self-sustaining independent artist. MFA graduates of the program have been highly successful in their professions over the last 30 years.
The success of the program is due in large part to the distinguished leadership of L. Brent Kington, Emeritus Professor, who is credited with reintroducing the craft of metalwork as an art form to the United States. Since his retirement, the program has been under the leadership of Associate Professor Richard Smith, who has also brought much to the department, obtaining grant funding to modernize equipment and expand the teaching environment in the L. Brent Kington Blacksmith shop, making for a more enriched and safe learning experience.
Learn more about our undergraduate program here.
The work pictured in the Metals Graduate Gallery is only a small sampling of the outstanding work of our graduate students in Metals.
Master of Fine Arts, Metalsmithing Specialization
A minimum of 60 semester credit hours is required for the Master of Fine Arts degree with a major in art.
Primary studio emphasis: 26 credit hours
Graduate Art History: 12 credit hours
Studio Electives (may be within specialization): 9 credit hours
Thesis or terminal project work: 6 credit hours
Other Electives: The remaining 7 credit hours may be elected from any area within the School of Art & Design or from the University at large.
Bachelor of Fine Arts, Metalsmithing Specialization
The undergraduate major in Metalsmithingcan be accomplished by fulfilling the requirements for the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree.
Total Degree Requirements: 125 credits
University Core Curriculum: 32 credits
(3 covered by AD 100A or B, 6 by AD 207A, B, or C Introduction to Art History)
Art and Design Requirements: 93 credits