Art & Environment MA

Lucy Morley
Falmouth Campus
1 year full-time
2 years part-time
Direct line
01326 213730

Applications to MA Art & Environment are currently suspended as we are now supporting this subject area at postgraduate level through our MFA programme. Please contact the Admissions Team (above) for further information.

This MA is the only course of its kind in the UK, offering focused, practice-based engagement with ecological and environmental issues. The course is designed to provide you with the skills, expertise and confidence to operate as a professional artist in this expanding area of practice. You’ll develop creative strategies to use art as a cultural agent – as a tool for knowledge, understanding and change.

In recent times our understanding of the impact that contemporary societies have on the Earth has changed dramatically. The relationship between humanity and our planet is now understood to be in a critical condition. The arts are uniquely placed to respond to this situation.

In addition to poetic and holistic interpretations of the environment, artists now regularly collaborate with scientists to exchange knowledge about water, air, energy and soil. Similarly, the environmental crisis suggests that we reconsider concepts of community, health, food, waste, transport, housing, economics and education.

Within this context, MA Art & Environment will help you position your practice within the broad field of environmental/ecological arts, in order to develop an informed professional body of work. The course enables you to use art to identify and draw attention to issues and problems; generate radical ideas and creative strategies; devise and promote new ways of thinking; and engage with a broad sector of the public.

Building professional experience

Helping you hone the professional skills to develop your practice, the MA includes learning about generating funding, writing proposals, documenting work, making presentations and exhibiting. There are opportunities for exhibitions and other public events at our partner venues including the Centre for Contemporary Art and the Natural World in Exeter, and Aune Head Arts, Dartmoor. You'll also be encouraged to undertake a work placement with a relevant individual or organisation.

The course's close connection with RANE provides an international context as well as network opportunities with artists, writers, film-makers and others working creatively in the environmental sector.

How the course is taught

Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, film screenings, discussion groups, tutorials, studio crits, workshop and field trips. Alongside classroom-based learning, discussions, presentations, hands-on workshops and experiential learning will also take place at external locations.

Some teaching is shared with other art and design MA courses, offering opportunities for you to collaborate with other students and disciplines. There's considerable flexibility and you'll have good access to staff for tutorials and informal discussion.

Course outline

This is a one-year, full-time course delivered over 45 weeks. Alternatively, you can study the course part-time over two years, totalling 90 weeks.

Study Blocks 1 & 2

The course has been developed from the Art, Nature & Environment research group (RANE).

Over seven modules, you'll learn about environmental issues and reflect on the many different ways artists engage with them. You'll also consider how such artists reach their selected audiences and interact with them.

As the course progresses you will gain a broad knowledge and begin to focus on specific themes that are of interest to you. Throughout this period there'll be opportunities for work placements with relevant organisations.

Study Block 3

The final project is the combination of your creative practice and an extended essay that theorises your work and contextualises it within the field of environmental art and thinking. This final project results in a public exhibition.


  • Studio space for full-time students
  • Workshops
  • Comprehensive library resources
  • Full IT facilities
  • Use of the Photography and Media Centres


  • Assessment carried out at key evaluation points
  • Final assessment follows the MA exhibition


Our graduates pursue careers as professional artists or use their skills in a related field, such as teaching or curating. The specialist provision of this course can also lead to opportunities for further work in environmental projects and research.

The close link with the RANE research group also offers a progression to doctoral study for those students who wish to further their learning through a research degree.