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Program Overview

About the Program
The MA/PG diploma in Contemporary Art is the longest running specialized Master’s program of its kind in the world. Established in 1991, it focuses on art in the period from 1968 to the present, with strands on art history, curatorial studies, and critical theory, and a strong emphasis throughout on professional career development. We have a proven track record of academic excellence and high-level graduate employment worldwide. The program covers developments in contemporary art from around the world, examining the most established and the more recent practice and institutional networks and structures. An intensive program of lectures by faculty members and guest speakers of international standing, visits to major London venues including Tate Modern and Frieze, and small group seminars, workshops and student presentations, help students gain confidence in reflecting and speaking on all forms of contemporary art – from painting and sculpture to video and installation as well as the most recent web-based, collaborative, and multidisciplinary practices.

During the first semester, following the institute-wide shared core curriculum, Navigating the Art World, students move on to the specialist study of contemporary art, focusing on the period between 1968 and 1995.  Semester 1 includes regular gallery visits in London and an extended study visits to a major European centre for arts (Venice for the Biennale or German cities). In Semester 2 we look at the period between 1995 and the present, concentrating on a number of topical issues and debates. The second semester also includes two extended study visits (to two of the following: the Venice Biennale, Germany, Amsterdam and Paris).

The flexible structure of the Master’s program allows students to concentrate their studies on a chosen field by selecting two elective units, either pursuing further specialization in contemporary art or undertaking options that will broaden their understanding of other areas of study, such as fine and decorative art and design, modern and contemporary Asian art, or art business. In Semester 3 (MA-registered students only) prepare and write their dissertations under the supervision of their tutors.

About Our Students
The MA in Contemporary Art program welcomes prospective students who have an interest in gaining a strong understanding of historical developments, critical debates, and institutional networks in the increasingly global world of contemporary art. Students graduate from this intensive nine-month (PG diploma) or year-long program (MA) with in-depth knowledge and professional preparation to work in any area of contemporary art. Graduates gain employment in private and commercial galleries, art fairs, auction houses, museums and foundations, private and public collections, art publishing, art investing and consulting, visual archives, not-for-profit organizations, art services and e-commerce, and academia.

Our Curriculum
Access a copy of the 2019-20 London Master's degree curriculum and course descriptions.

Viewbook
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MA Contemporary Art Meet Juliet Hacking, Director of MA Contemporary Art, London
The Details
  • Curriculum-at-a-Glance

    Curriculum-at-a-Glance

    ACADEMIC YEAR 2019-2020

    Units of Study
    Core Units


    • Navigating the Art World – Shared Core Curriculum

    • Contemporary Art Histories

    • Debates in Contemporary Art


    Elective Units
    (Choose any two of the below)


    • Art and Authentication

    • International Art World: Public Sectors

    • Contemporary Chinese Art

    • Market for Western Antiquities and Old Masters

    • Contemporary Design and its Markets

    • Modernism and its Markets

    • Curating Asian Art

    • Performance Art

    • Curating Contemporary Art

    • Photography and its Markets

    • East Asian Painting

    • Photography: Image and Power

    • Ethics, Law and the Art Trade

    • Strategic Management for the Art World

    • Emerging Markets

    • Work Placement Unit (accredited internship)*


    Dissertation or Practice-Based Dissertation (MA only) 

    Click here for the program electives summary.
  • Faculty

    Faculty

    Dr. Juliet Hacking, Program Director
    Dr. Marcus Verhagen
    Dr. Pierre Saurisse
    Dr. Tom Snow
    Dr. Mike Cooter
  • Course Fees & Application

    Course Fees & Application

    ACADEMIC YEAR 2019-2020

    UK/EU
    Deposit: £500
    Semester 1: £10,050
    Semester 2: £10,550
    Semester 3: £5,200
    MA total: £26,300
    PG Dip total: £21,100


    Non-UK/EU
    Deposit: £500
    Semester 1: £12,000
    Semester 2: £12,500
    Semester 3: £6,100
    MA total: £31,100
    PG Dip total: £25,000


    These fees are exclusive of the cost of travel for study visits.

    Travel costs: £2,250

    Click here to apply.

    Click here to read Terms and Conditions.

    Click here to find out about Scholarships, Grants and Loans at Sotheby's Institute - London.


     
  • Program Prospectus

    Program Prospectus

    Click here to download program prospectus.

    For further information, please contact:
    admissionslondon@sothebysinstitute.com or Request Information
    T +44 (0)20 7462 3219
  • Contact And Request Information

    Contact And Request Information

    For further information, please contact:
    admissionslondon@sothebysinstitute.com or Request Information
    T +44 (0)20 7462 3219
  • Field Trips

    Field Trips

    Students on the MA in Contemporary Art program visit a variety of art spaces in London--public and commercial galleries, auction houses, art colleges, project spaces, and artists' studios. They also go on three international study trips during the program. Past trips in Semester One have included a visit to Venice for the Biennale (and to visit other venues such as the Prada Foundation) or a stay in Northern Germany, where students visit a number of particularly strong public collections as well as smaller spaces and private foundations, including one entirely devoted to contemporary video and film. The second semester has two study visits to one of the following four destinations: Northern Germany, Paris, Amsterdam or Venice. The purpose of these trips and visits is to gain a more fine-grained and responsive understanding of artistic and curatorial practices while also developing first-hand knowledge of the different roles played by various institutions in the art world.

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