Fine Art BA(Hons)

UCAS Code
W100
Location
Falmouth Campus
Length
3 years full-time
Direct line
01326 213730

Fine Art at Falmouth has a long and distinguished reputation for excellence and continues to help students meet the challenges and opportunities of the contemporary art world. Our studios at Falmouth's leafy campus provide the ideal place to develop your creative practice.

The course provides a rich and diverse creative environment and welcomes students with vision, ambition and curiosity. Our students are keen to develop their skills and abilities to create visual work of real quality and significance.

You'll be challenged to develop your practical skills, and to contextualise and articulate your work through presentations, exhibitions and written assignments. We'll also prepare you for career opportunities in the creative arts, through professional practice lectures and workshops.

We have excellent technical facilities on campus, providing support for 3D work, print-making, painting, and audio-visual and time-based media.

Benefits

  • Public exhibitions
  • Creative, practical and theoretical skills
  • Skills and experience in research, reflection, evaluation, professional practice and independent, innovative thinking

How the course is taught

The studio is at the centre of your learning and teaching. Teaching consists of individual tutorials, group discussions, critiques, technical workshops and student-led initiatives in exhibitions and presentations of work. At the beginning of the course, you'll take part in introductory studio-based exercises and media workshops. The course is practice-led, with students taking increasing responsibility for self-directed study.

Course outline

Our Fine Art course consists of an integrated learning experience of visual art practice and critical studies, with an emphasis on studio practice. Studio practice comprises a range of contemporary art forms supported by technical facilities, studios and staff expertise. These include drawing, painting, print-making, performance, installation, 3D, video, digital and lens-based work. During the course you may work in any media that's appropriate to the development of your studies.

Critical studies and reflective practice modules give you opportunities for written assignments and encourage your ability to contextualise and analyse visual arts practice.

What you'll do

Year 1

Introductory projects help you generate ideas through practical work and introduce you to the basic elements of the creative process. As you develop specialist interests, you will be supported by media workshops and begin to strengthen the relationships between sources, ways of making and visual ideas. Critical studies modules introduce key study skills, contexts and debates that are important to the understanding of contemporary artworks. Through assignments you will also explore ways of writing to develop your analysis of artwork and reflection on your own practice.

Semester 1 (15 weeks)

Studio Practice 1: Strategies for Practice
(40 credits ECTS 20)
The introductory projects in this module are intended to help you generate ideas through practical work. It also introduces you to the basic elements of the creative process and self–directed study.

Critical Studies & Reflective Practice 1: Introduction: the Contexts of Contemporary Art
(20 credits ECTS 10)
This module introduces key study skills and support for transition to higher education. It also introduces contexts, debates and questions that are important to the understanding of contemporary artworks.

Semester 2 (15 weeks)

Studio Practice 2: Initiating Practice
(40 credits ECTS 20)
At this point you will begin to develop specialist interests supported, where appropriate, by media workshops. You will also begin to strengthen the relationships between sources, ways of making, and visual ideas in the development of your practice.

Critical Studies & Reflective Practice 2: A New Millennium
(20 credits ECTS 10)
This module comprises a series of lectures surveying the period 1990 to the present day. Through assignments you will also explore ways of writing appropriate to the analysis of artwork and reflection on your own practice.

Year 2

As you take increasing responsibility for your own learning, the second year is often a time of exploration and discovery where you begin to establish a more distinct and sustained body of work.

There is an emphasis on professional practice, and you'll gain an understanding of how to prepare your work for presentation in a professional context. Critical studies lectures and assignments will examine the processes and materials used in current practice. It will provide a programme of research methods to help you prepare a topic for your final year dissertation. There are also opportunities for Erasmus international exchanges during the year.

Semester 1 (15 weeks)

Studio Practice 3: Development & Presentation
(40 credits ECTS 20)
The focus of this module is to build on the achievements made in Stage 1 in relation to the development of your practice. It helps you focus and refine your work, and gain understanding of how to prepare your work for presentation in a professional context.

Critical Studies & Reflective Practice 3: The ‘Mediascape’ of Contemporary Art
(20 credits ECTS 10)
This module examines the processes and materials used in current practice. This includes those with a long history as well as some very recent developments. The module also presents a range of examples of artists’ writing, with an opportunity to note how the form of the writing relates to the artist's work.

Semester 2 (15 weeks)

Studio Practice 4: Thematic Developments
(40 credits ECTS 20) 
Progressing from Studio Practice 3, you are asked to identify and develop individual themes in your practice. As your visual ideas become more explicit so will your understanding of the potential of materials and processes to articulate these themes.

Critical Studies & Reflective Practice 4: Research Methods
(20 credits ECTS 10)
This module aims to deepen your understanding of visual influence and extend your grasp of the historical dimension in your chosen area of practice. A programme of research methods will help you prepare a topic for the dissertation in Stage 3.

Year 3

At this stage in the course you'll take greater responsibility for your planned and organised engagement with learning and teaching. This gives you the opportunity for increased focus on your individual practice. You will select, document and present your work for evaluation and final assessment. You will also undertake a dissertation. The topic will reflect your personal areas of research and relate to the context of your studio practice.

Semester 1 (15 weeks)

Studio Practice 5: Consolidation
(40 credits ECTS 20)
At this stage in the course students take greater responsibility for their own planned and organised engagement with learning and teaching. This provides the opportunity for increased focus and consolidation of your individual practice. It also concerns your ability to select, document and present your work for evaluation and final assessment.

Critical Studies & Reflective Practice 5: Dissertation
(20 credits ECTS 10)
As a result of the Research Methods module you will have determined the scope of your topic for this 5000-7000 word dissertation. The topic will reflect your personal areas of research and relate to the context of your studio practice. It gives the opportunity for in-depth research and communication of critical and contextual ideas in writing.

Studio Practice 6: Completion
(60 credits ECTS 30)
This module completes the Studio Practice journey and focuses on work to be presented and assessed in a show at the end of the module. It is likely that work in this module will be made in direct relation to the work created in the previous Consolidation module, representing finished work and supporting work for assessment and exhibition.

Facilities

The studios, Fine Art workshops and library facilities include:

  • Studio accommodation
  • Dedicated workshops for painting, sculpture and printmaking
  • Digital imaging facilities
  • Video and photography facilities
  • Performance and sound facilities
  • 140,000 books, 17,000 DVD/video titles and over 400 journal titles
  • Radio archives, slides, pictures, maps and archive collections

Staff

All staff on the course are practising artists, performers and/or writers, whose experience, commitment and professional expertise ensure that you'll receive the highest quality of tuition across the spectrum of contemporary fine art. They are supported by internationally recognised Visiting Professors, Cornelia Parker and Simon Fujiwara, and a vibrant lecture series. Recent speakers include Alex Katz, Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, Richard Wentworth and many more.

Assessment

  • Practice-based modules will be assessed on the presentation of visual work, including preparatory work
  • Critical studies modules will be assessed on written assignments
  • In the final year you will be assessed on your dissertation and your studio-based module, which culminates in an exhibition of your final year work

Careers

You'll graduate well placed to consider opportunities that require creative, independent and innovative thinking, including:

  • Becoming a self-employed artist
  • Setting up your own studio or creative project
  • Working in numerous roles in the creative industries
  • Postgraduate study to provide a gateway into teaching, arts administration, curating, gallery/events management and conservation

Graduate destinations

  • Internationally exhibiting artist: Bischoff/Weiss, London
  • Film-maker: Cannes Film Festival prize winner
  • Art critic: Time Out magazine
  • Creative presenter: Ralph Lauren, Hong Kong

Student Mentor Scheme

Falmouth's Student Mentor Scheme matches new starters with a second year student, to help you settle in and find your feet. Our student mentors are now on Facebook. To chat to a mentor about the course, living in Cornwall or what to expect at Falmouth, check out the Fine Art group. You'll need to join the group before you can post.

If you don't have access to Facebook please email your name and proposed course to: studentmentors@falmouth.ac.uk

For more information about the application process, portfolios, interviews and selection days, please contact our admissions team using our enquiry form