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Fine Art & Art History

BA (Hons)
Fine Art and Art History
3 years (full-time)
UCAS 2J89

In the contemporary art world, as the boundaries between fine art practices are crossed, so too are the distinctions between artist, historian and curator. This new and distinctive course questions and challenges these boundaries. Fine Art and Art History offers you the opportunity to develop and expand fine art studio practice by a significant engagement with historical, critical, and theoretical concerns.

Special Features

  • Emphasis on integrating studio practice and academic study.
  • Delivered by practising artists, historians, theorists, and curators.
  • Opportunities to learn a foreign language, visit international exhibitions and access the Erasmus international study programme.
  • Course works closely with arts institutions and galleries.

Course Content

Teaching over the three years will allow you to synthesize art historical and theoretical knowledge into your studio work so that you may develop an informed contemporary fine art practice. This integration will challenge you, enriching your intellectual and creative ambitions, and encourage you to situate your art practice within a broader social and cultural context.
The staff team delivering the course are internationally exhibiting artists, curators, and art historians with expertise and research interests in the modern and contemporary period.

Year 1

In year 1 you will begin to establish your fine art practice within our studios and specialist workshops. You will study the historical, theoretical and practical uses of images and objects and be introduced to the historical approaches to art in the modern period.

Studio Practice - Art History and Visual Theory

This unit will provide an introduction to approaches to art history and theory in relation to the production of fine art studio outcomes. You will explore a wide range of fine art and visual culture through a developing engagement with academic and creative practice. The unit will address areas such as ways of seeing, visual analysis, technological reproduction, and relationships between word and image, through seminars, peer interaction, lectures, workshops, group work, studio practice, exhibition and gallery visits.

Studio Practice - Modern Art History: 1800-1950

The unit will introduce you to methods, materials and processes relevant to the Fine Art and Art History subject areas. The unit aims to introduce you to the history of art during the modern period c. 1800-1950, by considering general relationships between art and society as well as specific movements and artists. You will also undertake Fine Art project work and develop a range of practical skills through an introduction to specialist workshops, and also consider the specific nature of the relationship between the Fine Art and Art History subject areas.

Unit X

This unit  encourages collaborative, interdisciplinary practice and shared experience. There are lectures and talks from key research staff, students and external experts, tutorial group meetings, and presentations. The set projects will vary from year to year and will designed to be responsive to creative opportunities. The course encourages students to respond to contemporary media and as such, it is a live unit in which we discuss films, television, comics, games and the news relating to the media in any specific week.

Contextualising Practice 1

You are allocated to one of four pathways addressing programme-based clusters of cognate practice areas. Lectures, seminars, guest speakers, visits around cultural contexts and professional issues.

Contextualising Practice with Language 1

You are allocated to one of four pathways addressing programme-based clusters of cognate practice areas. The unit includes lectures, seminars, guest speakers, visits around cultural contexts and professional issues.

Year 2

In year 2 you will explore the emergence and spread of new approaches to fine art practice and art history and you will reflect upon the challenges that arise from these developments. This critical approach will develop and enhance your interpretative skills in relation to contemporary fine art practices.

Studio Practice - Interpretations: Theories of Practice

This unit will focus on the relationship between theory and Fine Art practices and will introduce students to critical, theoretical perspectives and approaches to the interpretation and production of Fine Art. These approaches will be further explored within a studio context and in relation to a developing individual Fine Art practice. The approaches will include: iconography; formalism; semiotics; phenomenology; Marxism; Feminism; Foucauldian discourse analysis; post-colonial and psychoanalytical methods; theories and approaches to the interpretation and production of Fine Art. The unit will also explore the contested terrain between history, theory and Fine Art studio practices.

Studio Practice - Post-War Art History: 1950-2000

This unit will facilitate the development of an independent studio practice providing an opportunity to further explore materials, processes and issues relating the emergence of new approaches to art practice in the post WWII period. To do this the unit will consider the chronological emergence and spread of new approaches to art and the development of new relationships between art and society during this period. Students will produce a body of work that will articulate their developing understanding of their practice in relation to issues explored in the unit.

Unit X

This unit explores collaborative and interdisciplinary art and design practice.  You will have the opportunity to engage in a range of external-facing learning opportunities which will encourage collaborative, interdisciplinary practice and shared experience; this may take the form of spending time outside of the university and working within the creative community and the public domain.

Contextualising Practice 2

Delivery of critical, historical and professional issues to enhance your development within practice-based clusters. Delivery to clusters of cognate practice areas. Content consists of selected thematic options in critical and historical areas plus cluster-wide professional and employability issues, facilitating and enhancing the development of both studio-based work and identity as a practitioner.

Contextualising Practice with Language 2

Delivery of critical and historical issues to enhance the student's development within practice-based clusters.  Content consists of selected thematic options in critical and historical areas facilitating and enhancing the development of both studio-based work and identity as a practitioner. Modes of delivery include lectures, seminars, tutorials, guest speakers, visits and placements.

Year 3

In year 3 you will work with increasing independence to create a body of art work that demonstrates an engagement with contemporary fine art practice. This individual studio practice will be developed with an awareness of the different contexts within which art is produced, seen, interpreted and circulated.

Framings: Contexts for Interpreting and Making Art

The unit expects students to develop and consolidate their individual studio practice with an awareness of the different contexts within which art is produced, seen, interpreted, and circulated.  The unit will examine a range of institutional contexts and discourses related to the production, circulation, interpretation, and valuing of art between the early nineteenth century and the present. These will include the nineteenth century academies, the art market, the art museum, avant-garde formations and alternative display sites, the art magazine, and digital cultures.

Studio Practice - Contemporary Art: 2000-the Present

Students will work with increasing independence to create art works that demonstrate an engagement with contemporary art practices. The unit will also consider traditional and new contexts for the production, display, and circulation of fine art.  Individual studio practice will be informed by an examination of contemporary Fine Art practices such as painting, sculpture, public art, installation and site-specific work, lens-based practices, digital art, participation, relational aesthetics, and activist art. The unit will also examine the discursive, institutional, professional, political, global, and ethical contexts of contemporary art practices.

Unit X

On the third year Unit X, there is a student authored final project leading to a showcase of finished work. The unit includes a brief generated by the student, which leads to the presentation of a significant body of final work. Collaborative and interdisciplinary work can be incorporated into the project in relation to the professional context and ambition of the student.

Contextualising Practice 3

Programme of research and critical analysis of cultural and professional issues related to a student's individual practice interests.

Contextualising Practice with a Language 3

Programme of research and critical analysis of cultural and professional issues related to a your individual practice interests. A negotiated project focused around an individually defined area appropriate to your aims and ambitions.

Assessment Weightings & Contact Hours

10 credits equates to 100 hours of study, which is a combination of lectures, seminars and practical sessions, and independent study. A three year degree qualification typically comprises 360 credits (120 credits per year). The exact composition of your study time and assessments for the course will vary according to your option choices and style of learning, but it could be—

Study
  • Year 1 25% lectures, seminars or similar; 75% independent study
  • Year 2 25% lectures, seminars or similar; 75% independent study
  • Year 3 25% lectures, seminars or similar; 75% independent study
Assessment
  • Year 1 100% coursework
  • Year 2 100% coursework
  • Year 3 75% coursework; 25% practical

You can find further details about the curriculum in the Programme Specification Document

Staff

This course is taught by Fine Art and Art History staff.

  • Rick Copsey
    Programme Leader, Art Theory and Practice


Graduates

This course is appropriate for careers in a range of cultural roles such as artist, curator, journalist, arts manager, gallery assistant, teacher, as well being appropriate for postgraduate study.

Making an Application

How to Apply

Apply through UCAS.

If you meet our criteria we will invite you to an Interview and ask you to show us a Portfolio of your work.

You will be notified of our decision through UCAS.

Entry Requirements

UCAS Tariff Points/Grades Required112-120.

Minimum 112 - 120 at A2 or equivalent (which can include Foundation Diploma in Art & Design). A Level General Studies is not accepted.

Specific GCSE Requirements

GCSE English Language at grade C or grade 4. Equivalent qualifications (eg. Functional Skills) may be considered

Non Tariffed Qualifications

112-122 UCAS Tariff Points from Access to HE Diploma in a relevant subject with at least 45 credits at Level 3

International Baccalaureate26 Points

International Students

A minimum IELTS score of 6.0 with no element below 5.5 is required.

Check our MMU International site for further information if you are applying with non-UK qualifications.

Tuition Fees 2017 Entry

UK, EU and Channel Island students

UK, EU and Channel Island students: Full-time fee: £9,250 per year. This tuition fee is agreed subject to UK government approval, and may increase each academic year in line with inflation or UK government policy.

Non-EU international students

Non-EU international students: Full-time fee: £14,100 per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

Additional Information

A degree typically comprises 360 credits, a DipHE 240 credits, a CertHE 120 credits, and an integrated Masters 480 credits.

See Money Matters for further information and advice.

Additional Costs

Specialist Costs

Optional £500* Students often choose to buy their own laptop in their first year. However there are computer facilities on campus. £200-£800

Trips and Placement Costs

Optional £1,140* Educational visits to European centres during each year. These are optional and if related to a unit of study, local alternatives are identified.

Professional Costs

There are no additional professional membership fees required for full qualification.

Other Costs

£600*  plus optional £2,400* The production of works or artefacts which may require you to purchase specific materials and/or equipment relating to your area of fine art specialism. Audio Visual equipment is available to loan. Depending on what you buy, additional costs could range from £150 - £800 per year. Books and digitised readings are available from the library. However you will be required to purchase a small number of core books approx £50 per year.

* All amounts shown are estimates.

Find out more about our Art School Credit scheme that you can use to help pay for materials needed on the course.