MA/MFA Painting provides a discipline led environment in which to develop your practice in contemporary painting. Through a strong focus on your individual studio practice you will engage in the most significant current debates on painting and the histories from which they emerge. The MA/MFA Painting will encourage you to question the boundaries of your practice, embracing current ideas of ‘expanded painting’ and painting being ‘beyond self’ alongside questions posed within the more typical parameters of the picture plane and modes of representation.
Dr Ian Hartshorne on the special features of the course
The MA Painting is made up of four units totalling 180 credits.
The programme is practice driven and focussed on the development of your existing practice. It will enable you to identify and explore new concepts and approaches negotiated through an individual working synopsis.
You will also be encouraged and supported to extend your experience in the professional sphere either through a practical project, research context, exchange, work experience, or other negotiated professional set of interactions with an external partner, groups of students or other art world partner.
Towards the end of the programme you will consolidate your research and practice into fully realised body of work for exhibition or other form of public situation as appropriate. You will also have developed a strategy for the continuation of your practice located and contextualised to the profession or discipline.
If you choose to progress to MFA Painting award you will study a further two units of 60 credits each.
The MA Painting is made up of four units totalling 180 credits.
Driven and focused on the development of your practice through the realisation of a comprehensive and coherent body of work, this unit builds upon the previous Practice 1 unit and provides an opportunity to sustain the development of practice over a concentrated period of time. Within this unit you will engage in current debates on painting and the histories from which they emerge. You will be expected to resolve a comprehensive understanding of your practice, its place in relation to the wider discourse and the potential professionalization and sustainability of future practice.
This unit extends your understanding of the professional context of Contemporary Curating, contemporary Fine Art, and Painting practices. Through an examination of artworld institutions and structures you will be guided to consider a range of possible positions that the contemporary artist or curator can occupy in the professional domain. The unit will extend your experience into the professional sphere, either through a practical project, research context, exchange, work experience, or other negotiated professional set of interactions with an external partner and/or peer group of students.
This unit offers focussed opportunity for you to extend and enhance your practice by including working in a wider art and design research community. The study of the cultural and critical contexts of art and design practice is vital to any student of the creative disciplines, this unit will develop your abilities to contextualise your practice through one of a series of themes addressing contemporary issue in art and design.
In previous years, themes have included contested territories, health and wellbeing, negotiated study, space and context, digital future and writing research and funding proposals. Theme options may vary each year.
Practice driven, the unit is focused on the analysis, reappraisal and development of your existing practice in relation to painting.You will be encouraged to question the boundaries of your painting practice, identify and explore new concepts and approaches, negotiated through an individual Working Synopsis. The unit is informed by the School of Art's international research strengths in Painting and will engage with national and international research agendas.
The MFA Painting continues with the following two units totalling 120 credits.
This unit is centred on continuation of your practice aligned to the research and selection of appropriate public or professional venues or platforms with which to disseminate a significant body of work. Through the unit you will be asked to approach, propose, negotiate and progress a plan for the dissemination of your body of work.
This is the final unit towards an MFA award in which you are required to realise a significant body of work for a public audience in whatever form is most appropriate along with any implicit publicity and dissemination material. Work at this level is significantly self determined and as such you will be asked to define and appraise your own learning outcomes through negotiation.
We have developed a dedicated postgraduate area occupying an entire floor of the main School of Art building, offering an exciting space to be, both intellectually and practically. The centre is located in the Chatham Tower with studios, design laboratories, seminar rooms and extensive workshops that form the nucleus of this vibrant, cross-disciplinary learning environment.
Find out more about Manchester School of Art's facilities.
Visit our online MA Show galleries to see examples of recent work by our postgraduate students.
We cultivate highly motivated, independent and creative thinkers who can transfer their skills into the creative marketplace, as entrepreneurial innovators, freelance practitioners and innovative team players. Past graduates predominantly achieve graduate-level positions or practise as sole traders, design studio artists, exhibiting artists, museum curators, archivists, researchers, academics, community practitioners, specialist technicians and filmmakers at national and international levels.
Normally applicants will have a good undergraduate UK honours degree (minimum 2:2) in a related subject (or international equivalent), or a degree-equivalent postgraduate diploma, or a professional qualification, or relevant professional practice. Alternatively, applicants may be admitted if they can demonstrate appropriate knowledge and skills at honour degree standard.
Selection is by digital portfolio and interview.
English Language requirements are in line with the university standard entry requirements for postgraduate entry. Progression onto the MFA units requires at least a 50% pass of the 180 credits MA units that constitute the first 180 units of the MFA award being studied.
Please apply online using the link below.
Full-time fee: £1667 per 30 credits 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).
Part-time fee: £1667 per 30 credits studied 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).
Full-time fee: £3167 per 30 credits 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).
Part-time fee: £3167 per 30 credits studied 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).
A masters qualification typically comprises 180 credits, a PGDip 120 credits, a PGCert 60 credits, and an MFA 300 credits. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of study provided the course is completed in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).
Eligible alumni receive a 20% discount on their postgraduate tuition fees. Find out more about our Alumni Loyalty Discount.