Art Department

List of 1 items.

  • Philosophy

    The visual and performing arts are vital to the education of every student at Xaverian. It is through the arts that students reflect upon how a society sees itself and expresses its beliefs and principles. Our mission is to enable our students to explore the relationship between the arts and society.

Art Department Goals

List of 2 items.

  • Foster Critical Thinking

    To teach not only the skills to create art but to foster critical thinking and problem-solving skills in each student.
  • Promote Creativity

    To promote student creativity and self-expression

High School Courses

List of 7 items.

  • Studio Art

    This is a general survey course, in which students will create a collection of artworks that reflect an understanding of the elements and principles of art and design. It is designed to introduce students to the role of art in history, to teach them the language of art criticism and to provide them with the tools to think visually, conceptually and critically. This course will not only satisfy the NYS requirement for graduation but it will also serve as a prerequisite for all students intending to take other art electives.
  • Foundations of Drawing and Painting

    First Semester Course: Foundations in Drawing and Seeing
    Students will practice traditional drawing exercises with the intention to develop skills for drawing still life, figure drawing, linear perspective, and tonal shading. Additionally, students will explore basic theories on composition. 
    Second Semester Course: Foundations in Painting
    Students will develop fundamental skills in principles of drawing, the relationship of drawing to painting, underpainting techniques, value and color, light, shade and shadow, palette organization, and modeling techniques. 
  • Introduction to Digital Art

    This course will introduce students to the field of Graphic Design as well as creating digital video. Applying the Elements of Art and Principles of Design, students interested in this course will learn the basic tools and techniques for creating and manipulating images and transforming ideas into artwork. Emphasis will be placed on The Adobe Suite (Illustrator/ Photoshop/ InDesign, and iMovie), with basic understanding of photography, composition, and media literacy. Students will conceive of and create digital works of art, manipulate pre-existing images, and develop critical thinking skills. The computer acts as a tool to create artwork from common sources, as well as from the imagination. Work will be printed and critiqued. 

    -This is an approved elective course for students in any of the Honors Programs.
  • Introduction to Architecture

    This course is designed to introduce students to the ideas, principles, and methods of solving architectural problems in a studio setting. Students of this course will comprehend the many facets of architecture: reading and understanding architectural drawings, developing drafting skills through freehand and mechanical drawing, utilizing hands-on architecture tools, critiquing historical and current architectural structures, and conceptualizing the development of ideas. Emphasis will be placed on urban development as well as green architecture. 
    Students of this course are expected to purchase a textbook as well as an architectural kit, including an architecture board, T-square, triangle, architecture and engineer scales, etc. 
  • AP Art and Design

    In this course, students will be provided with a learning experience equivalent to that of an introductory college course in studio art foundation. By the course’s end, students will have the option of submitting one of three different portfolios – drawing, 2-D design, or 3-D design—each based upon different skills mastered. The course provides opportunities for students to practice and develop the skills in the following skill categories: Inquiry and Investigation, Making through Practice, Experimentation, and Investigation and Communication and Reflection. The course teaches students to understand integrity in art and design as well as what constitutes plagiarism. If students produce work that uses others’ work, the course teaches students how to develop their own work so that it moves beyond duplication of the referenced work(s).

    Prerequisite: Any student applying to this course must have completed the Studio Art course and must seek approval from the Art Department Chairperson.
  • Fashion Design

    This course will be an introduction to the visual illustration designs of fashion and technical renderings of a garment. Students will create, pose, and style fashion figures of their own to use in original design sketches. By the end of this course, students will be able to find inspiration through research for mood boards and sketchbook creations, design a cohesive collection of garments and render them in color using professional art techniques and mediums.
  • Fashion Techniques and Sewing

    This course will be an introduction to the hands-on side of fashion design. Students will learn the garment-making process from start to finish. They will begin with hand and machine sewing mechanics and various finishing techniques. By the end of this course, students will be able to lay out, cut, and sew an industry-standard pattern.

Middle School Courses

List of 3 items.

  • Art 6

    This course focuses on key artistic vocabulary as the students begin their artistic journey. They learn about the Elements of Art, the fundamental building blocks that artists use to create original work. They apply these terms using various mediums, from oil pastels to collage to colored pencils. Furthermore, students learn about various artists throughout history as they work with these terms and materials. Artists such as Pablo Picasso, Bridget Riley, and George Seurat act as inspirational guides to various styles of art making and techniques. The foundations learned this year will continue throughout middle school.
  • Art 7

    In this course, students continue to learn and explore the Elements of Art as a means of art-making. However, they also begin to learn about the Principles of Design - core terminology that helps artists create strong compositions. Seventh graders use these terms as they explore more complex materials, such as watercolor and charcoal. They look at artists such as Roy Lichtenstein, Georgia O'Keeffe, and M.C. Escher. These students begin to collaborate more as well, working on artwork and illustrations in groups as well as across subject matters. For example, Illustrations in art class become the muse for storytelling and creative writing in English class. All in all, this year in art is meant to build upon the knowledge learned in sixth grade, as well as expand upon the student's skills and creativity through hands-on art-making and interpretation.
  • Art 8

    Eight Grade Studio Art reviews both the Elements of Art and Principles of Design, terminology learned in previous courses. However, eighth-graders will go beyond as they focus on three major components of art-making: skill-building, peer critique, and personal choice. Students learn technical skills in drawing and painting, from creating artwork in one point and two-point perspective to three-dimensional renderings and still life drawings to advanced watercolor techniques. Each student will research and investigate artists independently to find inspiration that they will, in turn, use for their own projects. Students create artist statements, describing their process and ideas in detail. Furthermore, students take additional time to analyze and critique each other’s work, both in-progress and finished projects. Because of this, students learn to interpret ideas, think critically and creatively, and discuss artwork in a meaningful way.

Specialized Studies Courses

List of 1 items.

  • Digital Art

    The Ryken Digital Arts class will introduce students to the fundamental skills needed to create artwork on the computer. This course will focus on the Adobe Suite, which includes Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign. The overall goal of this course is to present the student with the tools to render digital artwork. The student will understand various computer programs and how they are used in a professional setting. The student will develop the ability to think critically, analyze and critique art, develop artwork for a specific client and purpose. Also, students will become familiar with concepts from art history as it pertains to the Graphic Arts. By the end of this year-long course, students will have a portfolio that includes a wide range of projects and artwork, including digital landscapes, logo design, digital portraiture, and photography.

Art Department Members

List of 3 members.

  • Photo of Patrick Mathews

    Patrick Mathews 

    Art Department Chairperson
    (718) 836-7100 x835
  • Photo of JoAnna Mesiti

    JoAnna Mesiti 

    (718) 836-7100 x882
  • Photo of Diana Tozzi

    Diana Tozzi 

    (718) 836-7100


Established in 1957, Xaverian is one of thirteen schools nationwide sponsored by the Xaverian Brothers.