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Fine Art MFA

Mode Duration Start date
Full time 2 years September 2017
Part time 4 years September 2017

Choose Kingston's Fine Art MFA

This is a studio-based, research-centred programme for those who wish to explore the subtle and complex relationships between the production and display of contemporary art within the context of professional excellence. It will challenge you to develop your personal vision and create clear, meaningful and appropriate work to consolidate and strengthen your position as an artist.

Key features

  • This course offers a unique opportunity for artists to develop a major body of practical work that engages with the context of a critical understanding of contemporary fine art practice.
  • You will produce self-initiated work from the outset. Individual tutorials, seminar presentations and practical workshops will support your studies.
  • The course will enable you to capitalise on the School's existing and well-established networks. We also encourage you to develop your own networks and support structures.

What will you study?

The Fine Art MFA incorporates a taught programme that primarily demands a considerable degree of investigation and experimentation. You will focus on practical and theoretical issues surrounding the development of fine art practice in relation to specific contexts, and will be required to interrogate the positioning of your practice through curatorial intervention and collaboration, providing preparation for professional practice and/or further research. You will also be encouraged to create interdisciplinary alliances and will have the opportunity to work in a variety of environments, both individually and collaboratively.


Seminar presentation, portfolio/documentation, exhibition, seminars, workshops and interdisciplinary group work, module reviews, peer reviews, professional practice, and independent events.

Course structure

Please note that this is an indicative list of modules and is not intended as a definitive list.


  • This module is a core requirement for all postgraduate students in the School of Fine Art. It enables you to develop your individual fine art practice, through a combination of group seminars, critiques and informal presentations. You will gain (through experience) a mature, discursive approach that develops a critical and theoretical framework to contextualise your practice. This module guides you through the key principles, perspectives and practices that inform the contemporary art arena. The module culminates in the presentation of a body of work with an emphasis on production and process and your ability to position your work within the wider contemporary art field.

  • This module provides a forum for debate between students and staff, researchers, visiting theorists and practitioners. You will have the opportunity to:

    • develop and apply critical frameworks to your practice;
    • debate a range of theoretical, cultural and social issues; and
    • consider a variety of approaches to communicating, presenting and publishing your own work and research.

    You develop your ideas through:

    • seminar discussions;
    • tutorials;
    • individual and group reviews;
    • a programme of lectures and seminar events led by visiting artists and practitioners;
    • off-site visits to galleries, site-specific artworks, media venues and other cultural spaces; and
    • study tours abroad.
  • You are expected to build upon previous module outcomes and ongoing individual research to complete a major project for public exhibition. This is the capstone project. The capstone project helps you to synthesise, reflect on and apply the knowledge and skills they have acquired during their course. You should devise and manage the project alongside the peer group, with the support of a practising artist and tutor. You should research many aspects of exhibition making and production at a professional level.

  • This is the defining module for MFA students drawing on their previous knowledge and experience at postgraduate level. The module will consist of you working on, and developing, a self-initiated and independent research capstone project for public exhibition and/or publication. You will reflect on your prior learning and apply this together with the knowledge and skills acquired through contact and dialogue with guest speakers and the examination and interrogation of current models of practice-based research. You will set a demanding and challenging project or body of practical work. You will be expected to demonstrate a high level of professionalism and a command of the negotiation skills required as well as sharing risk and challenging yourselves individually.

  • Choose from:

    • This module explores the impact of new communications systems on how we perceive, negotiate, create and experience spaces. The module begins with group seminars on the following areas:

      • documentation and representation of artworks;
      • technological developments; and
      • cultural influences.

      You will have to:

      • visit websites and research/liaise with outside bodies from the beginning of the module;
      • attend workshops - introducing you to programmes and equipment;
      • work in teams to present and design individual and group concepts for the course website.

      The module will equip you with the expertise necessary to develop innovative use of new technology in other areas of your practice.

    • This module develops your individual fine art practice through collaborative process, exhibition, publication and/or performance. You complete substantial creative work through collaboration within a defined group and learn how to articulate complex relationships between concept, technology, form and audience. You are also encouraged to consider your project in relation to conventional / experimental work in similar areas. You will develop skills that will enable you to situate your work within an international and historical framework.

    • European Art Practice/Off-Site
    • This module enables you to develop an independent critical approach to observing and interpreting current experimental film culture, in its relation to contemporary art practices, taking into account different critical theories and contexts.

      The module has a two-fold purpose:

      • to provide an in-depth understanding of the theoretical debates and questions specific to experimental film practice and artists' moving image; and
      • to provide direct experience of, and professional engagement with, the contexts of reception and exhibition for film, through programmed screenings and exhibitions, as well as a field visit to an experimental film festival, for example, the Oberhausen Film Festival.

      The module seeks to provide familiarity with a range of diverse modes of producing, thinking and observing experimental cinema and its relation to visual arts. You will consider the convergence of theory and practice, covering different theoretical approaches to the cinematic, and surveying the conceptualisations produced around it. The module addresses emergent theories, philosophical concepts and critical perspectives on experimental film. Moving between the disciplines of cinema and fine arts, you will debate questions of spectatorship, media and technology, documentary practices, current engagements with the cinematic and its archives. You will example concepts of relevance to contemporary discourse.

      Your understanding of the field of moving image culture, and your skills of analysis, develop through analysis and discussion of specific works, seminars, group presentations and screenings, hosted both on site and by external organisations. Your knowledge and critical skills are assessed through an individual presentation and submission of a written essay.

    • Philosophy

You will have the opportunity to study a foreign language, free of charge, during your time at the University as part of the Kingston Language Scheme. Options currently include: Arabic, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

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This course is taught at Knights Park

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Contact us

Admissions team


This course is taught at Knights Park

View Knights Park on our Google Maps
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