This course will enable you to become an academically strong, thoughtful artist who understands how your practice relates to the art of the past.
You'll split your time equally between studio practice and the history and theory of art - from what has been understood as 'art' in different cultures and societies over time to the contemporary art market and cultural theory. Working across a range of media, you'll develop your own body of work under the guidance of artist-lecturers and visiting practitioners, and study alongside artists and cultural theorists in a stimulating research environment.
Optional modules will give you the chance to focus on topics that interest you, from African art to contemporary photography and cinema. You'll explore the relationship between art and society and engage with a range of theories that have been used to understand cultural forms. You'll also gain professional skills as you develop and exhibit your own artistic work in every year.
The University has a variety of resources to support your learning and practice. In the summer of 2016, the School moved to a new location on the University campus, providing a fully redesigned and refurbished learning environment. You will work in professionally laid-out, well lit studios with 24 hour access and will benefit from versatile exhibition spaces and social areas.
Resources include dedicated Mac and PC computer suites for video editing, animation and image manipulation, printmaking workshops for etching, relief and screen printing, and a photography darkroom for film developing and printing. A woodworking and casting area are also housed within the School, with additional facilities for digital and 3D printing available at the University.
The University has a variety of resources to support your learning and research. We have a wide range of museum collections and galleries on campus such as the Stanley and Audrey Burton Gallery and the Brotherton Library Treasures Gallery. ULITA - An Archive of International Textiles - is housed on campus to collect, preserve and document textiles and related areas from around the world. Project Space, a new multi-purpose space designed for the development of curatorial practice and visiting exhibitions, sits at the core of the School's new building.
The university also houses a wealth of modern and contemporary art that make up the Art on Campus displays of sculpture, in addition to the Yorkshire Fashion Archive and the Marks & Spencer Company Archive and exhibition displays. These resources all offer exciting opportunities for our students to engage with art and culture.
From the start of the programme, you'll have the chance work across all fine art media and you'll be encouraged to find your own direction as an artist. Half of the degree is devoted to studio work, giving you the time and space to develop your ideas. You'll take field trips to exhibitions, galleries or fine art fairs and combine lectures with group seminar sessions to discuss contemporary art practice, which you can use to inform your own creative work.
To support these studies you'll take core modules that introduce you to contested ideas about the artist, art and the history of art as well as the relationship between art and society. You'll gain research and analytical skills that provide a foundation for your degree.
In Year 1, you will gain the fundamental skills and knowledge for the study of art and culture and explore your own direction as an artist by developing a creative portfolio across a range of media. Compulsory and optional modules will introduce key themes and interpretive methods, examine different cultures and materials, and consider the intentions and identities of artists.
In Year 2, you will build upon and critically apply the knowledge and skills learned in Year 1 and further pursue your own individual interests. In addition to compulsory modules, you will choose from optional modules on topics from medieval European art to cinema and its relationship with culture. You will also continue to develop your portfolio.
Your final year balances studio work with researching and writing a dissertation - an independent piece of research on a topic of your choice, which can either complement your studio practice or focus on a topic of your choice within art history. You will compliment and support these projects with a choice of optional modules.
Towards the end of the year you'll display your studio work in a final exhibition, applying your artistic and professional skills to interact with external agencies, the media and sponsors.
These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.
Entry requirements, fees and applying
A-level: AAB not including General Studies or Critical Thinking.
This degree will allow you to develop into a thoughtful artist with strong critical, interpretative and communication skills, as well as strong visual and critical awareness and an understanding of the ways in which your practice responds to and questions the art of the past. This will prepare you for a career in the arts and culture sectors, where you could join our alumni working in diverse careers as artists, curators, academics, writers and teachers among many others.
Graduates from our School have gone on to work at the Guggenheim Museum in Venice, the Tate Britain, Tate Modern, The Saatchi Gallery, The Henry Moore Institute, National Trust, Bonham's, Leeds City Museums, The Hepworth Gallery, The Geffrye Museum London, The Heritage Lottery Fund and the Rydale Folk Museum.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That's one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
Study abroad and work placements
On this course you have the opportunity to apply to spend time abroad, usually as an extra academic year. The University has partnerships with more than 400 universities worldwide and popular destinations for our students include Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Africa and Latin America.
Find out more at the Study Abroad website.
Practical work experience can help you decide on your career and improve your employability. On this course you have the option to apply to take a placement year module with organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors in the UK, or overseas.
Find out more about work experience on the Careers website.