Daring to Make a School Great: Students, faculty, and staff, along with alumnus Ralph J. Nagel, share their thoughts on what makes the Sam Fox School such a unique place.

The Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis is a leader in architecture, art, and design education. We are advancing our fields through innovative research and creative practice, excellence in teaching, a world-class university art museum, and a deep commitment to addressing the social and environmental challenges of our time. Through the work of our students, faculty, and alumni, we are striving to create a more just, sustainable, humane, and beautiful world.


The Sam Fox School is currently comprised of five buildings, located on the eastern portion of the Danforth Campus, as well as one facility located off campus.

Earl E. and Myrtle E. Walker Hall brings together the undergraduate sculpture and painting areas, the Nancy Spirtas Kranzberg Studio for the Illustrated Book, and some studio spaces for architecture students. The sculpture area includes undergraduate studios, a wood shop, a metal shop, an installation room, and a faculty office—all on the ground level and first floor. The undergraduate painting studios and the Kranzberg Book Studio are on the second floor.

William K. Bixby Hall, completed in 1926, has grown and changed to meet the needs of the students, faculty, and administration of the College & Graduate School of Art. The building currently houses teaching and studio spaces for first-year art and design students, the undergraduate fashion design and printmaking majors, and some architecture undergraduate students and faculty. The Dubinsky Printmaking Studio, a state-of-the-art facility, is located on the first floor. On the ground floor, an administrative suite is home to student services and the finance office.

Joseph B. Givens Hall has been architecture's home since 1932. It features a variety of studio spaces, including large drafting rooms with 15-foot ceilings, large windows, and skylit ateliers. The building's compact and elegant Beaux-Arts design has at its heart a grand central stair often used for socializing and informal meetings. Givens Hall also houses a main lecture room, review spaces, classrooms, digital fabrication labs, and administrative offices for the deans and directors of the Sam Fox School.

Mark C. Steinberg Hall, completed in 1960, was the first commission by Fumihiko Maki, then an architecture professor at Washington University. Formerly home to the Gallery of Art, the Department of Art History & Archaeology in Arts & Sciences, and the Art & Architecture Library, Steinberg Hall now houses Career Services and the undergraduate communication design and photography majors on the lower level; public spaces such as Etta's Café, Steinberg Hall Gallery, and Etta Eiseman Steinberg Auditorium on the main level; and architecture and communication design studios on the upper level.

The Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, completed in 2006, is another commission by Maki. The elegant, 65,000-square-foot limestone-clad structure—a gathering point for scholars and the general public—includes more than 10,000 square feet of exhibition space, art storage facilities, and the Florence Steinberg Weil Sculpture Garden. The Museum also houses the Kenneth and Nancy Kranzberg Art & Architecture Library; and the Department of Art History & Archaeology.

The Lewis Center, which is located off campus at 721 Kingsland Avenue in University City, is home to studio facilities for the Graduate School of Art, as well as some other programs. The building is named for Edward Gardner Lewis, the founder of University City, and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975. Built in 1909, the Lewis Center was purchased from the developer by Washington University in the fall of 1998, to ensure that art students would continue to have classroom and studio space. The 36,000-square-foot facility supports work across media—including sculpture, painting, printmaking, fashion design, photography, digital imaging, and time-based media—and offers individual and shared studio spaces, classrooms, and wood and metal shops.

In addition, construction is under way for a new building, Anabeth and John Weil Hall, and for the expansion of the Kemper Art Museum as part of a larger, University-wide project. Learn more about the project here>>

Strategic Plan

View the Sam Fox School's strategic plan>>