The Department of Art at Metropolitan State University of Denver is a vibrant, diverse environment full of options for students interested in pursuing a degree in a creative field.

Whether you are interested in being a professional artist, designer, educator or researcher, you will learn traditional methods of art production and research as well as innovative approaches to art and design.

Art students are analytical, critical thinkers who use their creativity daily. They work independently and collaboratively to develop thoughtful responses to the world around them, and emerge as artists, designers, educators and scholars.

Wordmark says Art at MSU DenverThe Auraria Campus is a stone’s throw from the heart of downtown Denver’s art museums and Performing Arts Center, the Santa Fe Art District and MSU Denver’s Center for Visual Art, so students are tapped into Denver’s creative economy. Our graduates have become curators, archivists, art installers and entrepreneurs, and have gone on to graduate schools at Virginia Commonwealth University, Columbia University, Goldsmith’s University, London and more.

No matter what your ultimate career goals are, the degrees in the Department of Art at MSU Denver offer you the flexibility of diverse options so you train to become an innovative creative professional. And MSU Denver is the most affordable four-year university in Colorado, so you won’t be burdened under a mound of debt.


Program Options

The Department of Art offers Bachelor's degrees, minors, and a teaching licensure, as well as coursework and special programs for both art majors and non-art majors.



Department of Art Student Work

Exhibitions by Bachelor of Fine Art Students in
Studio Art and Communication Design
Student Work from Fall 2023 and past years




The mission of the Department of Art at MSU Denver is to provide a challenging and supportive learning environment for students who aspire to professional practice in visual art, art education, art history, and design.

To achieve this mission, we:

  • Encourage critical thinking through examination and analysis of contemporary and historical modes of cultural production;
  • Guide students in expressing their own creative visions through practice-based research in traditional and contemporary media;
  • Value and respect the transformative power of creative expression;
  • Strive to produce distinctive, significant, and thought-provoking art, design, and research in diverse disciplines;
  • Embrace social and cultural diversity to foster an atmosphere of mutual respect;
  • Engage in the cultural life of our communities, providing students opportunities for personal growth and professional development;
  • Deliver unique art education to Denver and the surrounding communities through programming and exhibitions at the Center for Visual Art and on the Auraria Campus.


Art Facilities at MSU Denver

Galleries, Studios, Classrooms and Labs in the Department of Art




Land Acknowledgement Statement

By knowing our history, we can better understand our place within it and seek to be in right relationship with the people who were here before us and are here now.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Policy

The MSU Denver Department of Art represents a diverse community of individuals who study, teach, create, and advocate for art and design.

Safer Spaces Resolution

For Black, Brown, and Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) Impacted by State and Police Violence.


Career Prospects

Here’s where an art degree from MSU Denver might take you:

  • Commercial Design and Graphics
  • Environmental Design and Architecture
  • Education
  • Business
  • Crafts
  • Entrepreneurship

Fine arts offer an array of possibilities for art graduates. Graphic designer, museum curator, art teacher, jewelry designer, photographer, illustrator, and many more.

Art Graduates Across Disciplines

The idea of working across disciplines is far from new, but evidence suggests that such crossover is becoming an increasingly important part of artistic careers.

This DataBrief detailing the under-acknowledged prevalence, predictors, and outcomes of multi-disciplinary arts practice, from the Strategic National Arts Alumni Project (SNAAP), provides arts educators and arts policymakers with highlights of SNAAP data and insights into the value of arts-school education.



Shadow Day for High School Students

What’s it like to be an art major at MSU Denver?

Learn about our programs in Studio Art, Communication Design, Art History and Art Education. Campus visit includes tour of department studios and Center for Visual Art, hands-on making activities, info sessions, and free lunch!

When: Thursday, November 9, 2023 9am – 2pm

Where: Arts Building, Auraria Campus

What: Shadow Day is a FREE event and will include:

  • Class visits
  • Make and takes
  • Walk to CVA to view BFA thesis show
  • Info about study abroad, portfolio reviews, and the Art + Action Lab.
  • Free lunch

Please note: This event is designed for individual students who are interested in pursuing a degree in Art, Art Education, Art History, or Communication Design. If an individual can’t make it to Shadow Day, please consider signing up for a tour of the department another time. If you are an educator and you have an entire class you would like to bring to campus for a tour of the department please contact us.

Cost: Free!



Department of Art

Office Location:
Auraria Campus Arts Building
First Floor, Suite 187

Find Us on Google Maps

Mailing Address:

Metropolitan State University of Denver
Department of Art
Campus Box 59
P.O. Box 173362
Denver, CO 80217-3362

Shipping Address:

Metropolitan State University of Denver
Department of Art
1201 5th Street
Denver, CO 80204

Students between classes walk through the hallways and pass by artworks posted on the bulletin boards.