Curriculum

Fine Arts (MFA) Program

The Master of Fine Arts degree is awarded for completion of 60 credits. A maximum of six credits of graduate-level liberal arts coursework can be transferred. Students must maintain a 3.0 cumulative grade point average and fulfill all requirements in a timely manner.

First Year / Fall

PGFA 5036 Graduate Core 1: Group Critique 3
PGFA 5105 Graduate Core 1: Studio Visits
(includes Fine Arts Visiting Lecture series)
3
PGFA 5127 Professional Practice 1 3
PGFA 5150 Critical Thinking 1 3
Elective
3
15

First Year / Spring

PGFA 5037 Graduate Core 2: Group Critique 3
PGFA 5107 Graduate Core 2: Studio Visits
(includes Fine Arts Visiting Lecture series)
3
PGFA 5151 Critical Thinking 2 3
Electives
6
15

Second Year / Fall

PGFA 5115 Graduate Core 3: Studio Visits
(includes Fine Arts Visiting Lecture series)
3
PGFA 5046 Graduate Core 3: Group Critique 3
PGFA 5140 Thesis Research and Writing 1 3
Electives
6
15

Second Year / Spring

PGFA 5047 Graduate Core 4: Group Critique 3
PGFA 5117 Graduate Core 4: Studio Visits
(includes Fine Arts Visiting Lecture series)
3
PGFA 5145 Thesis Research and Writing 2 3
PGFA 5128 Professional Practice 2 3
PGFA 5146 Thesis Exhibition 3
15
Total Credits  60

Curriculum Description

The Master of Fine Arts curriculum requires 60 credits of full-time study: 30 studio, 12 academic, six professional practice, and 12 elective credits. Students work independently in their own studios and participate in weekly critiques with an internationally acclaimed faculty of art professionals. Classes expose students to contemporary discourse on art and develop their critical abilities. Lectures, workshops, and studio visits with visiting artists, curators, and gallery directors enable students to reach beyond the school environs to engage with the New York City art scene and the international art world.

Graduate Fine Arts. In this studio course , students work with a community of faculty and peers who inspire, challenge, and support one another. Meeting for six hours a week, the course is structured around group and individual meetings with faculty members, who set rigorous standards of achievement and help students develop cohesive expression and skills.

Students work with five core faculty members in succession. First-year students work with all five faculty members; second-year students choose two faculty members in their final semester and work with each one in rotation. Open sign-up periods and group critiques occur between rotations. Each week within the rotations, one to one-and-a-half hours of group discussion are held. Students spend the rest of the time working in studios while faculty members make one-on-one studio rounds.

Student work is analyzed in a cultural, contemporary, and historical context. In individual and group critiques, studio visits, and discussions, students and faculty identify the values and ideas expressed and implied by the artwork. Students visit galleries and artists' studios to compare their own work to the challenging and constantly evolving standards of the contemporary art world. Visiting faculty members meet regularly with students for continuous critical analysis.

Students design their own work process to establish self-discipline, which allows and sustains lifelong work and growth as an artist.

Theory, Practice, and Career. This required course for second-year graduate students is designed to help students enter the art world as self-managing artists. It was developed in cooperation with the New York Foundation for the Arts and funded by the Emily Tremaine Foundation. Students develop the skills that make confident and articulate practitioners.

Graduate Seminar. This first-year seminar exposes students to significant discourses in 20th- and 21st-century art, including modernism, postmodernism, feminism, colonialism, and racial representation; commodity culture, including ideas about collecting; technology; and the digital revolution. All these topics are explored in writing assignments and class discussions as well as through readings, video and film viewing, and art exhibitions. Seminar work is interspersed with studio visits. In addition to short writing assignments that accompany readings, each student is responsible for a major research paper.

The second-year Graduate Seminar is thesis driven. Weekly and bimonthly writing assignments break down the subjects required for the thesis into smaller elements. Drawing assignments, individual studio visits, and slide lectures on student work augment written assignments and promote class discussion.

At the end of the second year, students present a body of work completed in the program and a written thesis for the Final Master's Review. Selected artwork is exhibited in the annual MFA Thesis Exhibition during the spring semester.



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