Art at Cherwell College is popular and offers students the chance to be creative and explore a range of artistic techniques.
Our own dedicated studio, Cantay House, is the perfect place to focus and work. As with all our subjects, there is emphasis on working at your own pace and under the guidance of our expert tutors.
We always welcome visitors to view the studio and meet our team. Please get in touch to arrange a personal consultation.
Art is a major subject at A Level and is recognised by universities as both challenging and rewarding. There is significant coursework involved with an emphasis on creativity. Students produce their own work in one or more areas including drawing, painting, sculpture, installation, and film, with the final portfolio demonstrating the development of their ideas and exploration of artistic techniques.
We exhibit student portfolios in May each year as part of the county-wide celebration of Art in Oxfordshire.
Students should ideally have studied Art at GCSE; where this is not the case, students are able to attend a Cherwell College pre-sessional course in Art which is available in August.
Good combinations with Art A Level
Art is a challenging subject with a lot of coursework. Students should consider this before taking up more coursework-heavy subjects. Good combinations are often based in English or the Humanities, however it is also very common for brilliant artists to have a love for science (just think of Da Vinci!).
We live in a remarkable age where everyone has a camera of exceptional quality just sitting in their pocket. Photography is no longer a hobby reserved only for those with specialist equipment but is practiced by everyone everywhere.
However, photography as an art form still takes time and effort. Consider the difference between a photo that captures merely a moment and one that captures a feeling.
This course covers techniques of photography including how cameras work, use of different lenses, digital manipulation, lighting and editing. Students produce their own portfolio focusing on their chosen theme. The end result demonstrates their learning process and aquiried photography skills.
Oxford is blessed with some of the most photographed areas in the UK - a great location to master the art of photography!
Art at GCSE is an advantage however those without are encouraged to attend our pre-sessional course available in August.
Extended Project Qualification
Imagine a course which allows you to study exactly what interests you, work at your own pace, and provide a qualification that is held in high regard by all universities across the UK. The Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) offers exactly these qualities.
Worth exactly half an A Level and marginally more than an AS, this is a research-based qualification that develops skills in individual study, essay writing, extended reading, and presentation. Referring to the skills that EPQ students gain, Oxford University states:
"you will be a more convincing applicant if you can demonstrate breadth of reading and independent research into your chosen subject; if you have pursued study beyond that required by your school syllabus."*
Most students choose to produce a dissertation on a topic related to that which they’ll study at university in order to help with their UCAS application. Dissertations are discursive and analytical. Example research questions include:
What are the impacts of learning a foreign language on child development?
Would an elected House of Lords lead to a more democratic government?
Is the free press a force for good?
Should we be afraid of Artificial Intelligence?
To what extent is violence linked to computer games?
Oxford must be one of the best cities in the world to study art history and Cherwell College is situated right at the heart of its architectural treasures. While studying this A-level you will make the most of the city, exploring numerous Medieval and Renaissance colleges of Oxford University as well as churches and other sites in town. Frequent study visits will be made to the Ashmolean Museum to analyse significant paintings and sculpture in there. The very fine view from the window of your classroom affords art historical material for discussion. But this two-year course will introduce you to broader European and non-western developments in art and architecture too. Beginning with the Parthenon in Athens you will proceed at first chronologically through different styles and periods to explore the themes of nature and identities in art and architecture. This synoptic survey will provide the foundations for later in-depth study of the Renaissance in Florence, Rome and Italy, and Pre-Raphaelitism and Impressionism in London and Paris. We will follow the Edexcel History of Art specification.
Edward Clarke Teaches Art and the History of Architecture at Oxford University for the past fifteen years.
Edward also teaches A-Level History of Art at Cherwell College Oxford.
He is currently writing a book that brings together all his interests in this field: entitled The Secret Mind of Art - scheduled for publication by Lion Books in 2022.