University of Technology Sydney

013218 Studio Practice: Painting

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2021 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Education: Initial Teacher Education
Credit points: 6 cp

Subject level:


Result type: Grade, no marks

There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.


Framed within the requirements of the NSW Visual Art Syllabus, Studio Practice Painting enables the development of a strong creative practice as painter, educator and thinker. This practice-based subject focuses on the human figure, and human relationships with the natural world. The subject examines contemporary painting practice, contexts and theories, providing studio experience in traditional and current methods, design theories, the material behaviour of different pigments, media and modes of representation. Through these processes, students engage with the diverse meanings and possibilities of visual representation through painting. The role and relevance of the painter in the post-medium context is examined in a discourse regarding aesthetics, education, creativity and critical theory. Additionally, As a long-established social and cultural practice, painting contributes not only to professional knowledge but is a means to attaining wellness and self-care within professional and personal life.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

a. Identify and apply diverse processes and conventions to strengthen competence in painting. (GTS 2.1)
b. Recognise and explain the relationships between art theory, aesthetics and art practice (GTS 3.1)
c. Articulate ideas and concepts underpinning personal art making (GTS 1.2)
d. Create a record of practice based learning in art theoretical, historical, critical and making capacities (GTS 3.4)
e. Apply effective and appropriate health and safety practices in the art classroom (GTS 4.4)

Contribution to the development of graduate attributes

This subject addresses the following Course Intended Learning Outcomes:

1. Professional readiness

1.6) Exhibit technological pedagogical and content knowledge

6. Effective communication

6.2) Possess literacy and numeracy skills across a broad range of communication modes and technologies

6.4) Are able to make well-informed contributions to contemporary debates pertinent to education.

Teaching and learning strategies

Students will experience learning in this subject via practice-oriented studio activities and short lectures. The practice-oriented studio activities will facilitate acquisition of skills and perspectives. Students will use and reflect upon painting as visual communication and expression, gain competence in painting media including acrylic, watercolour, ink and pigments on a range of conventional and unconventional surfaces. The short lectures will introduce, contextualise and explain theoretical ideas, and integrate readings, activities and assessment task. Practice is informed by research-inspired understanding of contemporary painting, art critical theory and the material environment. Learning strategies will involve individual practice-based activities, scaffolded learning and collaboration with peers and tutors. These activities will provide formative feedback for development of skills and conceptual knowledge and will directly contribute to development of assessment works. The art spaces will be available for out-of-class practice and consultation with the tutor and technical officer at appointed times.

Content (topics)

Properties and behaviours of paint pigments within different media, on traditional and nontraditional supports.

Different aesthetic forms and materials communicate meaning and how audiences read this.

Painting as critical inquiry in both historical and contemporary contexts.

Development of a personal visual language through painting, using a variety of techniques, materials and concepts.

Generating and understanding meaningful subject matter in industry contexts.

Generating and undertaking effective artmaking programs within industry settings.


Assessment task 1: Essay



Weight: 20%

2000 words

Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Strength of evidence and description to support discussion, use of language and Visual Arts terminology 50 b 6.2
Justification of argument, interpretation of topic, and resolution of ideas, supported with reference (direct and indirect quotations) from contemporary, scholarly publications 50 b 6.4
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Assessment task 2: Visual Arts Journal


a, c, d and e

Weight: 20%

The Visual Arts Journal should:

  • display evidence of approximately 9 hours work.
  • provide weekly entries that are sighted by teacher.
  • be an ongoing piece throughout the semester, as opposed to a retrospective project.

The form it takes can be:

  • A bound Visual Arts diary OR
  • Loose pages which have been bound or boxed for submission.
  • The more successful pieces will demonstrate inventiveness and creativity using different materials, papers, surfaces etc, and reflect sensitivity towards aesthetic concerns.
Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Extent and quality of ongoing exploitation of and experimentation with media 50 a, c 1.6
Demonstration of a creative resolution of ideas in an ongoing process 50 d, e 1.6
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Assessment task 3: Exhibition and folio of works


a and d

Weight: 60%

Three artworks demonstrating resolution and proficiency in watercolour and acrylic techniques.

Folio of other supportive/experimental works (6 - 20 pieces) completed during the semester.

Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Quality of conceptual resolution and technical sensitivity evident in three resolved artworks in watercolour and acrylic. 50 a 1.6
Folio submission of 6-10 pieces demonstrating exploitation of, and experimentation with media, as well as evidence of processes in resolving ideas and techniques in the context of contemporary practice. 50 a, d 1.6
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Minimum requirements

Attendance at studio sessions is important in this subject because it is based on a collaborative approach that involves skill development and essential workshopping and interchange of ideas with other students and the tutor. Where possible students should advise the tutor in a timely manner if they are unable to attend. An attendance roll will be taken at each studio session. Students who are absent for more than 1 studio session may be refused to have their final assessment marked (see UTS Rule 3.8).

Recommended texts

Reader One

Abts, T. et al. (2002). Painting as art & Tim Gardner. In T. Abts et al. Vitamin P: New perspectives in painting. London: Phaidon, 5-9 & 119-120 & 122.

Reader Two

Valli, M. (2014). For slower images: The Rebirth of Painting. In Dessanay, M. and Valli, M. A Brush With The Real: Figurative Painting Today. London: Laurence King, pp 5-9

Reader Three

Titmarsh, M. (2014). 'Towards an ontology of colour in the age of machinic shine', Leonardo Electronic Almanac, Vol. 20, No. 2, April 15, 2014, pp. 132-144.

Reader Four

Schwabsky, B. (2010). 'Object or project? : a critic's reflections on the ontology of painting', in Petersen, A.R., Bogh, M., Christensen, H.D. & Larsen, P.N. (eds), Contemporary Painting in Context, Museum Tusculanum Press, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, pp. 69-80.

Reader Five

Gecszy, A. (2013). Who Owns Dots, or, Spirituality to the highest Bidder, or, can you buy Aura?, Broadsheet Art/Criticism/Theory Vol. 42, No 2, 2013 pp 163-165

Reader Six

Armstrong, C. (2016) Painting, Photography Painting. In Graw, I. and Lajer-Burcharth, E. Painting Beyond Itself: Painting in The Post-medium Condition. Berlin, Sternberg, pp 123-143.


Breuvart, V. (2002). Vitamin P: New perspectives in painting. London, UK: Phaidon Press.

Dorn, C., Madeja, S. &Sabol, F. (2004). Assessing expressive learning: A practical guide for teacher-directed authentic assessment in K-12 visual arts education. Mahwah, N.J.: L. Erlbaum.

Duncum, P. & Bracey, T. (2001). On knowing: Art and visual culture. Christchurch: Canterbury University Press.

Feisner, E. (2006). Colour: How to use colour in art & design. London, UK: Laurence King.

Finlay, V. (2002). Color: Travels through the paintbox. London, UK: Hodder & Stoughton.

Foucault, M. (1998). Aesthetic, method and epistemology. New York: New Press.

Freedman, K. (2003).Teaching visual culture: Curriculum, aesthetics, and the social life of art. New York: Teachers' College Press.

Ganz, N. (2004). Graffiti world: Street art uncut. Fisherman’s Bend, Vic.: Craftsman House.

Godfrey, T. (2009).Painting today. London, UK: Phaidon Press.

Janke, T. (2002). New media: Protocols for producing Indigenous Australian visual arts and crafts. Sydney: Australia Council for the Arts.

Janke, T. (2002). Visual cultures: Protocols for producing Indigenous Australian visual arts and crafts. Sydney: Australia Council for the Arts.

Johnson, V. (1996). Copyrites: Aboriginal art in the age of reproductive technologies.Sydney: National Indigenous Art Advocacy Association.

Jones, A. (2006). A companion to contemporary art since 1945. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing

Kocur, Z. & Leung, S. (2005). Theory in contemporary art since 1985. Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing

Mayer, R. (1991). The painter’s craft. New York: Penguin Books

Kuehni, R. (2005). Color: An introduction to practice and principles. Hoboken, N.J.: J. Wiley-Interscience.

NSW Department of Education and Training & University of NSW. (1999). Chemical safety in schools: The safe use and storage of workplace chemicals in schools Vol. 2; Section 3.2 Creative Arts, 2-47.

Singerman, H. (2006). Pictures and positions in the 1980s. In A. Jones (Ed.) A companion to contemporary art since 1945. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing.

Smallman, J. (2005). Stencil graffiti capital. N.Y.: Mark Batty Publisher.