Art has a profound impact on how we understand our world. It clarifies events and can compel complex emotions. This course offers a critical exploration of this exciting and influential field.
It combines first-hand analysis and research into why art (both images and objects) is produced, when, where, by whom and for whom. You’ll question the ways in which it has been written about and examined over time, and you'll address how racial, cultural and gendered narratives shape our understanding.
The curation and circulation of art are two key themes that make this degree distinctive. There’s a particular focus on how art is displayed (in museums, galleries, printed material or digital formats) and interpreted – and how this is used in other fields like journalism, politics and international relations.
Learn in London – the UK's creative hub
You’ll be offered exciting opportunities including curating your own exhibition, going on placement, exploring London and taking annual overnight trips – and you’ll be supported in developing your own entrepreneurial ideas. You'll develop a specialized knowledge, and build a valuable network of contacts.
Recently, students have:
- Visited Claridge's ArtSpace, where art can be bought in cryptocurrency
- Toured private collections such as those at the Deutsche Bank
- Experienced Frieze Masters and Frieze London events
- Visited the British Museum, V&A, National Gallery, Tate Modern and more
- Enjoyed immersive experiences at Superblue London and Frameless
- Visited historic houses – Strawberry Hill House, Leighton House, Eltham Palace
- Produced their own photograms with experts at Darkroom London
And joined guest lectures with:
- Philippa Abrahams – a BBC expert on artists' materials
- Anna Gordon – photojournalist for The Guardian, Financial Times, Reuters
- Priyesh Mistry – Associate Curator at the National Gallery
- Ali MacGilp – Director of the Frith Street Gallery
- Linda Tori – works in development and strategy for startups within the art market
Students have curated several exhibitions at our own Knapp Gallery:
- Sarah Lightman – Drawing from Life and Literature (2020)
- Marenka Gabeler – Because, Before, Why (2022)
- Sleeping Visions (2022)
- The Nature of the Feminine Divine (2023)
You'll graduate as a critical and culturally aware thinker, with verbal and visual skills, specialized skills and a network of contacts – ready to work in the competitive art field, or related businesses around the world.
In the integrated foundation year, you'll gain a solid grounding in academic principles and skills. Building upon this foundation, you'll be well prepared to go on to develop specialist knowledge in your chosen course.
It's structured around discipline knowledge, with extra modules that introduce you to the transferable skills you'll need at degree level and beyond – giving you a solid grounding in liberal arts principles and skills.
Once you've successfully completed your Foundation year, you'll be able to progress to any of our business, social sciences, humanities or media undergraduate courses.
Building on this foundation, you’ll develop specialist knowledge in your chosen course.
Download course specification