April 17, 2019

Call for applications: BxNU Master of Fine Art

BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art

Ciara Ní Léanacháin, So sú me, 2018. Courtesy of BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. 

The BxNU Master of Fine Art (MFA) at Northumbria University has been developed in partnership with BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead. The two-year course offers ambitious artists the opportunity to participate in a unique postgraduate degree programme, centred on the dynamic and critical culture of the BxNU Institute at BALTIC 39 in Newcastle’s city centre.

The BxNU Institute, led by BALTIC Professor Andrea Phillips, is a base for a network of internationally active artists, academics and curators who provide world-class teaching and mentorship in contemporary art practice and research. The BxNU MFA course sits within the wider BALTIC 39 culture of postgraduate research, with regular opportunities to engage with other researchers and professionals resident at BALTIC 39. In 2019, alongside Phillips, new professors include Gavin Butt and Maria Fusco. The BxNU MFA provides students with exceptional opportunities to develop their art practice in this context, supported by outstanding exhibition facilities, a public-facing Experimental Studio and dedicated work spaces for all students.

The purpose-designed studio and exhibition spaces at BALTIC 39 are one focal point of the course where students are supported to develop their practice through experimentation and critical reflection. You will also be encouraged to develop collaborative and co-productive initiatives with other artists, curators and social organisers in the city and elsewhere. You will work in an environment that encourages and supports self-motivated decision-making guided by the Art Department faculty, the BALTIC curatorial and learning teams alongside experts from different disciplines. Your practice will be developed within the framework of the BxNU Institute where discussion and debate on the role and value of contemporary culture is stimulated.

Throughout the two-year programme there are opportunities to interact with artists, writers and curators who are working to develop exhibitions and events at BALTIC and B39 as well as access a broad range of practicing artists, curators and theorists via our weekly visiting lecture series and events in the BxNU Experimental Studio. As an MFA student, you will be able to help programme talks and symposia organised by the BxNU Institute and participate in collaborative events initiated by BALTIC curators, all of which embody the spirit of openness and exchange in the city and region.

The Department of Art at Northumbria currently runs the following research clusters: Cultural Negotiation of Science; Curatorial and Critical Practice; Visual and Material Cultures; Moving Image; and Spaces of Appearance. In addition, there are many opportunities for cross-disciplinary research within the Art, Design and Social Science Faculty and beyond.

BxNU at B39 also houses as a large cohort of practice-based Fine Art PhD researchers (for details of this programme and funding opportunities click here).

The MFA course benefits from its direct proximity to BALTIC’s 300-square-metre, top-floor galleries where the MFA graduating exhibition is held each year. These spaces are managed and programmed as a project space by BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art.

Situated on the banks of the River Tyne and in close proximity to BALTIC 39 is the internationally renowned BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. BALTIC has welcomed over 7 million visitors since opening to the public in July 2002. BALTIC is a world leader in the presentation and commissioning of contemporary visual art. Housed in a landmark ex-industrial building, BALTIC consists of 2,600 square metres of art space, making it the UK’s largest dedicated contemporary art institution.

Contact: Professor Dean Hughes, Head of Department of Arts, [​at​]

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