An independent K-12 school on a beautiful wooded campus, 3 miles from Washington, DC

Visual Arts

How do our students experience art? How do we teach it?

The multidisciplinary nature of artistic work requires different ways of seeing and thinking. Potomac teachers instruct in skills, guide, advise, observe, and wait. We encourage, and we offer honest appraisals when asked. We believe that the inner visions and voices will never be well expressed unless the student develops fluency in the ancient, wordless languages of the arts. So we and our students work, and keep on working. And the work is always play.


Who are you? What is your individual journey? By expressing your vision to others, you also reveal it to yourself.


What do you notice in the world around you? By seeing more deeply, you understand more deeply. The eye is part of the mind.


How well can you work by yourself? By sharpening your attention, over extended periods, you learn the value of creative solitude.


How do you bring a new idea into being? In the design process you dream, develop, test, reflect, revise. There are no road maps; you are always off the trail.


What is it like to make something with your mind and heart, eyes, and hands? Artists use all their senses and physical powers as they explore with tools and materials.


How do your ideas and artwork speak to others? The studio environment is communal, each day you see and learn from what others are dreaming and making.


How do you measure your progress? By compiling a portfolio, you and your teachers can begin to see your path as your journey, step by step, year after year.

Department Members

Ida Cook
Upper School Art Teacher

Beth Dunkelberger
Middle School Art Teacher

Kristin Enck
Intermediate and Upper School Art Teacher

Diana MacKenzie
Lower School Art Teacher

Mark McLaughlin
Stagecraft Teacher

Paolo Morales
Upper School Photography Teacher

Cort Morgan
Chair of the Art Department and IS and US Art Teacher

Hillary Steel
Intermediate School Art Teacher