Academy of Fine Arts Vienna
The Academy of Fine Arts Vienna has been a leading European training center for artists for more than 300 years. As a matter of fact, it houses two of the most significant Austrian art collections, i.e. the “Gemäldegalerie” (Paintings Gallery) and the “Kupferstichkabinett” (The Graphic Collection).
Today, we offer some 1,400 students a variety of courses ranging from painting and sculpture to photography and video, performance and conceptual art, also including architecture, scenography and conservation/restoration. By offering seminars and carrying out a great variety of projects, the Institutes of Art Theory and Cultural Studies and of Natural Sciences and Technology in the Arts ensure a high theoretical standard in all the departments. This is closely linked to the training of art teachers, which we consider central in conveying and communicating art to others. The course structure, based on diploma studies and/or bachelor/master programs, is augmented through various doctoral studies, including an internationally renowned PhD-in-Practice program, as well as through the master program Critical Studies. This wide range of courses offered by the Academy enables students to pursue their own individual goals, and to obtain a variety of qualifications.
As a university, the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna is especially dedicated to teaching processes based on research and art alike, i.e. on scientific and artistic research, the findings of which are integrated into the curricula in different ways and communicated to a wider public through exhibitions, symposia, lectures and a publication series. Conveying a complex understanding of art to a knowledge-based society is one of the main tasks of the Academy, apart from teaching students.
The Academy’s teaching and research work rests on a differentiated concept of art which relates to the aesthetic appearance of a work of art as well as to the characteristic forms of thought underlying artistic practice. First and foremost, we understand art as a mode of thinking and acting which becomes manifest in a wide range of media. Art, as a specific form of insight, can also be expressed by representatives of many professions seemingly unrelated to art.
The strength of the Academy lies both in its teaching staff of successful, internationally recognized artists, and in its students from over 50 different countries, thus endorsing Vienna’s central role as a mediator between East and West. The Academy also cooperates with universities and other institutions of art and culture worldwide. By the same token, the Academy encourages its students to gather international experience in the course of their studies, and supports them in their endeavors.
Study Program Fine Arts (code no. 606)
The program is designed to enable graduates to work independently in artistic and designing disciplines. Graduates are to apply the knowledge and skills they have acquired in all areas of artistic practice and to be able to bring these to other professional fields and societal domains as important creative potential.
The artistic and intellectual qualifications acquired help graduates to think along interdisciplinary lines, act strategically, and work as a team player. This way, the program teaches the capability to work in art, and to give concrete material and programmatic shape to ideas and concepts.
The curriculum focuses on the following in response to complex developments in technology and society, as well as to the idea of what it means to be a contemporary artist:
Development of discerning capabilities of perception and expression
Development of an independent world of artistic ideas and morphology
Ability to engage with oneʼs own work in a critical way
Understanding artistic and designing work as creative activities in artistic and societal contexts
Understanding designing work as a principle intrinsic to all areas of life
Knowing and understanding the mechanisms of the art world and the art market
Ability to apply artistic and designing techniques and production technologies
Ability to present and document oneʼs own work
Ability to convey artistic concerns and interests
Study Program Art and Cultural Studies (code no. 607)
Art and Cultural Studies as a field of the Fine Arts program is primarily geared to students who would like to go in for theoretical education in addition to their practical work in the fine arts. The field of study offers students of the Fine Arts program an opportunity to deepen their knowledge of the links between theoretical and practical interests in art and science. Against the backdrop of a differentiated range of theoretical and practical information, this field of study conveys insights and sensitization to a societal and communicative field defined by following coordinates:
Acquiring an overview of the development of art, visual culture, and aesthetic theories
Understanding the connections between art, culture, and society
Familiarity with various issues and methods of artistic and cultural studies as well as natural sciences
Ability to do scientific research independently (writing texts relating to artistic and cultural studies) and adequate presentation of results (up-to-date conversion into appropriate media)
Ability to critically reflect upon and discuss oneʼs own and othersʼ works in the context of cultural developments
Insights into issues and problems of womenʼs and gender studies
Knowledge of fundamentals in respect of material and natural sciences
Admission to the Academy requires an entrance examination conducted by a board of examiners. It is held once a year and consists of the following parts:
a) Presentation and survey of candidatesʼ portfolios with samples of visual art.
b) Art exam in the form of a test as proof of creative talents, completed by an interview.
Both parts of the entrance examination have to be completed successfully for a pass grade.
PHD IN PRACTICE
The PhD-in-Practice is a doctoral program for research in artistic practice, set up by the Institute of Fine Arts and the Institute of Art Theory and Cultural Studies. The program provides participants with the opportunity to pursue their individual research projects in a collective environment with a strongly transdisciplinary and international focus. It provides a concept of arts-based research built upon critical epistemologies, as developed in the context of feminist, queer, postcolonial, ecological, post-Marxist and other political and emancipatory projects. The program is coordinated by Renate Lorenz (Professor for Art and Research) and Anette Baldauf (Professor for Methodology and Epistemology), and is assisted by Moira Hille (artistic-scientific staff). The lecturers and guests invited include: and …and …and, Sharon Hayes, Maurizio Lazzarato, ÁngelaLópez Ruiz, Angela Melitopoulos, SuzanaMilevska, Trinh T. Minh-ha, LidijaRadojević, Elisabeth Subrin.
The PhD in Practice program is designed for a study period of four years. During this time the participants develop and implement their projects analytically and experimentally in coordination with the academic and artistic team of co-participants and faculty.
Requirements for admission to the PhD in Practice program are: a degree (Magister, MA or diploma) from a recognized university and the submission of a portfolio and a written project proposal. Applicants who are already engaged in an artistic or academic career are especially encouraged to apply.
For further information and contact information, please see:http://blogs.akbild.ac.at/phdinpractice/
EDUCATION IN THE ARTS PROGRAM
The Institute for Education in the Arts at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna is characterized by the curricular integration of the practice of art and culture, education, and theoretical reflection. The BA program (starting in Winter Semester 2015/16) and MA program (starting in Winter Semester 2016/17) include programs inArt and Education, Design and Context, and Fashions and Styles. A degree from the Institute qualifies graduates for teaching in secondary schools. In addition, the interdisciplinary programs qualify students for creative and educative professions beyond the school context: from adult education in the fields of art and culture to independent forms of practice in the areas of art and design.
The courses offered are designed to enable students firstly to acquire interdisciplinary skills in the fine arts, purpose-oriented design and related fundamental skills in technology and media, and secondly to engage in reflection based on insights from cultural studies and the practice and theory of being an educator of art and culture. The programs provide students with extensive skills beyond teaching qualifications enabling graduates to work as cultural educators, in art and cultural studies, and in design and artistic fields.
A teacher-training program in Austria must be a combined training program of at least two school subjects. The Institute for Education in the Arts offers three subjects of study, i.e. school subjects, two of which must be chosen for one BA-program (internal combination). However, students also have the option to study just one of these subjects at the Institute and to enroll at another Austrian university for the second subject of study (external combination).
Additionally to a high school certificate, applicants for each of the BA-programs inEducation in the Arts at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna are required to pass an admission examination. Please find further information on the admission examination below.
Info on German skills required
Content of the teacher training programs “Education in the Arts”
The teacher training programs offered at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna are based on a notion of art and culture that critically reflects upon changes within society. The result is a definition of art and culture that forms a framework for cultural expression and social production to be mutually dependent. Art and culture are considered as a locus to be inhabited, something to be negotiated, comparable to a language that constitutes and reconstitutes itself and its speakers as it is used. On a methodological level, this is manifested by the combination of cultural production, reflection, and communication. Within this context, cultural production stands for the ability to articulate one’s creative ideas, which contains – without being limited to – the notion of art; cultural reflection is the capability of understanding and embedding artistic, creative, and social action in discursive contexts; and communication is the principle of dialogue whereby art and culture are conveyed, a principle which is defined by interaction with a variety of target groups and formats.
While the teacher training programs Art and Education, Design and Context, andFashions and Styles are each focused on different aspects of cultural activities, they are also integrative in nature. The mutual interrelatedness in diversity aims at breaking with historical conventions determining artistic practice and cultural education both within schools and elsewhere. Specifically, this means that everyday culture is increasingly integrated into the thematic fields and practical forms of art, design, fashion, architecture, urban life, and textile practice. In this context, everyday culture refers to a wide range of expressions of life, both urban and rural, connected as much with pop, style, and practices of resistance as with popular culture and rituals of adaptation, and equally well versed in new technologies and old craft traditions.
MASTER IN CRITICAL STUDIES
The Academy of Fine Arts Vienna is offering a Master programme in Critical Studies.
It is an artistic-academic course of study, which lasts four semesters with an artistic-academic project being developed in the final semester. The course is completed with a Master of Arts (MA) degree.
The programme is aimed at students who either possess a diploma or B.A. in a discipline from the field of humanities or those who have achieved a corresponding qualification in an artistic discipline.
The programme pursues three teaching objectives. It is intended to prepare students for academic doctoral studies, primarily in art theory and cultural studies but also in the disciplines of education in the arts and in architecture. It is intended to equip students to continue artistic research towards a Ph.D. in practice or a comparable qualification. It is intended to prepare students for activities in public artistic and cultural fields of practice, especially for work in journalism, specialised and academic journalism as well as for curatorial, archival, mediational and other such activities.
The programme has artistic, theoretical, propaedeutically preparatory, practical and such parts in which forms of practice are purposefully intermingled and their clear demarcation called into question.
The programme comprises of five modules. Studentsenroll for course units from these modules during each of the first three semesters. In the first module students individually participate in the regular artistic study programme at the Institute for Fine Art although to a limited extent. In the second module students develop artistic-academic approaches in a study project with teachers from different discplines. In the third module students select seminars from the Institute for Art Theory and Cultural Studies. In the fourth module students attend a practice-oriented seminar held by an external specialist. In the fifth module students are inducted into methodologies of academic work. In the fourth semester students develop their master’s project.
The Master’s programme in Critical Studies follows the critical traditions of the 20thcentury (from the Frankfurt School and the psychoanalysis to the New Left, Post-structuralism and Deconstruction), expanded by those developments, ramifications and problematisations of critical standpoints inspired in recent decades by fields such as Gender Studies, Postcolonial Studies, Subaltern Studies, Cultural Studies and Queer Studies. In addition, approaches developed in relation to new theories of the visual, medialities, the public and the social will be treated – consistently in relation to artistic processes.
Students will work in small teams and groups of rarely more than ten. They will be tutored by lecturers from a large pool from almost all the institutes at the academy.
Architectural education at the Institute for Art and Architecture is based on five research platforms:
GLC Geography Landscapes Cities
HTC History Theory Criticism
ESC Ecology Sustainability Conservation
CMT Construction Material Technology
ADP Analogue Digital Production
Design projects are at the center of the education, strategic approaches and positions are developed through the focus of each platform. On this base the field of architecture is taught in its practical, theoretical and scientific complexity. Theory, production and reflection, experiment and methodological critique are set in close relation. Architecture as a discipline is seen not only as functional solution for building tasks but also as the artistic and experimental competence to find answers for spatial, cultural, social, technological and political questions.
The Institute for Art and Architecture offers a three year Bachelor Program in Architecture (BArch) and a two year Master Program in Architecture (MArch).
The first semester of the Bachelor Program is an introductory phase familiarizing students with all five platforms. In the following five semesters, the fields of knowledge and potentials pertaining to the five platforms are developed and discussed in detail. The sequence of foci and platforms is one of increasing project complexity and skills serving as a solid base for the Master Program where the focus will gradually shift from learning the tools of the profession to actively using them in research. The Master Program fosters open teaching based on the platforms’ research fields. After an advanced introductory phase, students are largely free to select the focus of their curriculum within the five platforms. In the course of the program,
An entrance examination serves to select students with outstanding abilities and knowledge and therefore creates an a highly qualified and motivated surrounding for the students. Education at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna aims to foster individual qualities of the students. The pedagogic framework is based on a one-on-one basis and through team-teaching by a versatile faculty. Finally the Academy of Fine Arts as a whole, with its institutes for Fine Arts, Education in the Arts and Cultural Studies, provides an exciting interdisciplinary environment full of synergies.
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY/PHD
Doctoral studies at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna serve to deepen candidates’ understanding of history and theory, and support them in carrying out experimental research in art history and cultural studies, or of the respective social contexts of the artistic/cultural field involved.
For admission, a Master’s or similar degree (Diplomstudium) in the fields of the humanities, cultural studies, fine arts, or Secondary School TeacherAccreditation in a relevant school subject is prerequisite. This PhD program comprises 6 semesters (which is equal to 180 ECTS credits). One year after admission at the latest, a Thesis Agreement (Dissertationsvereinbarung) has to be concluded, specifying the main parameters of the supervision process.
Candidates are expected to attend courses comprising a minimum of 14 credit hours (or 20 ECTS credits). At least three such courses must be chosen from the seminars specifically offered to PhD candidates: Dissertant_innenseminare (3 ECTS credits or 2 credit hours each), and/or Privatissima (individual tutorials for selected participants, 2 ECTS credits or 2 credit hours each). All other courses can be freely chosen from the range of courses offered by the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna or by other Austrian or international institutions of post-secondary education; such courses must, however, in form and content be relevant to the candidate’s doctoral thesis, or complement the respective field of studies. These electives are to be specified in the Thesis Agreement.
DOCTOR OF TECHNICAL SCIENCES
The Institute for Art and Architecture (IKA) at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna offers a doctoral programme in architecture (Dr. tech.) in accordance with Section 54, Paragraph 1, Item 2 of the University Act 2002. The programme comprises a total of 180 ECTS credits for a duration of 6 semesters. Requirement for admission to this study programme is a degree (Magister, Master, or Diploma) from a recognized institution of tertiary education in Austria or abroad in architecture. In addition, students need a confirmation of an IKA-professor that she/he will supervise the dissertation in order to be admitted. The decision to grant supervision is based on a synopsis of the chosen dissertation topic.
Goals and Qualifications
The doctoral study of technical sciences at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna focuses on theoretical, historical or experimental research questions that arise in the context of architecture, cities and art. There is no specific content or method given. Welcome are innovative scientific examinations of problems that are relevant in the context of contemporary debates, as well as works that deepen theoretically and experimentally the position of the architectural design process.
DOCTOR OF SCIENCE
The doctoral studies in the natural sciences offered by the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna, serve to deepen candidates’ theoretical knowledge and enhance their experimental skills in order to help them handle approaches or issues arising from the scientific or technological investigation of art in general or objects of art history or cultural heritage in particular. Therefore, the term “doctoral studies in the natural sciences” refers to research accompanying those subjects or disciplines of natural or technical sciences which, both methodologically and thematically, deal with problems arising in the areas of art and conservation of cultural heritage.
For admission, a Master’s or similar degree (Diplomstudium) in the fields of the natural sciences or in a related artistic subject, or Secondary School Teacher Accreditation in a relevant school subject is prerequisite. This PhD program comprises 6 semesters (which is equal to 180 ECTS credits). One year after admission at the latest, a Thesis Agreement (Dissertationsvereinbarung) has to be concluded, specifying the main parameters of the supervision process.
Candidates are expected to attend courses comprising a minimum of 14 credit hours (or 20 ECTS credits). At least three such courses must be chosen from the seminars specifically offered to PhD candidates: Dissertant_innenseminare (3 ECTS credits or 2 credit hours each), and/or Privatissima (individual tutorials for selected participants, 2 ECTS credits or 2 credit hours each). All other courses can be freely chosen from the range of courses offered by the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna or by other Austrian or international institutions of post-secondary education; such courses must, however, in form and content be relevant to the candidate’s dissertation, or complement the respective field of studies. These electives are to be included in the Thesis Agreement.
The study of Scenography at the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna, aims to train artistic personalities who, after graduation, are capable of carrying out the design, composition and realization of scene settings as an integral part of dramaturgical work.
In the course of their studies, students acquire the skills required for the investigation of contemporary and historical realities by means of cultural-scientific studies, to describe these realities using the methods of drawing, painting, photography and new media, and then to convert them into appropriate stage and media formats.
In addition, graduates have acquired a basic knowledge of color, form, motion, sound, music, text and space with regard to technical practicability for stage and image.
This strongly practice-oriented course of studies guarantees excellent results in cooperation with a variety of theatrical fields, and promises to advance each student’s respective artistic abilities.
CONSERVATION AND RESTORATION
The study program Conservation and Restoration is devoted to the conservation of works of art and of cultural artifacts which merit regard as irreplaceable documents owing to their respective historical, artistic and cultural value, and whose conservation is therefore of public interest. In a wider context, the conservation of our cultural heritage is defined as a part of Human Rights.(1)
The basic tasks of the graduates is to conserve such works for the benefit of current and future generations.
The education offered by the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna, is considered to be comprehensive with respect to the general basics and the intellectual superstructure of the discipline, while also providing specialist training in the given framework of the study focuses offered:
Conservation – Restoration of Paintings / Sculptures
Conservation – Restoration of Objects – Focus on Wood
Conservation – Restoration of Paper / Photographs / Books / Archive Material
Conservation – Restoration of Mural Paintings / Architectural Surfaces
Conservation – Restoration of Modern and Contemporary Art
For details of the course content and objectives, please refer to § 2 and § 3 of the syllabus.
Admission: Admission examinations for the study program Conservation / Restoration are held in February, once a year.
1 Our Creative Diversity. Report of the UNESCO World Commission on Culture and Development. 1996