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VIDEO: Meet Juliet Hacking, Director of Photography

MA Photography: Contemporary & Historical, London

This programme offers an in-depth study of the history of photography, its place in cultural and critical theory, and its significance for modern visual culture.

Students are introduced to the critical analysis of the history of photography from the earliest experiments to the most recent developments. Although applied photography such as police records and advertising images are touched upon, the focus is upon photography as an aesthetic practice.

The increased presence of photography in public and private collections, and the art market, is one strand of investigation; photography’s role within the politics of representation is another.

All MA students at Sotheby’s Institute follow a core curriculum, Navigating the Art World. This unit comprises lectures, seminars, visits and workshops and equips students with crucial knowledge and understanding, together with a compelling set of professional skills, enabling them to operate successfully in the global art world. The unit culminates in a Project in which students apply the knowledge and skills gained, for example, to realise a hypothetical exhibition or new journal.

There is an impressive alumni track record of obtaining professional roles both as photographic specialists and in the wider art world.

During the programme, students experience:

  • A rigorous academic curriculum delivered in the classroom and in front of the artworks in bespoke visits to archives, art fairs, galleries, auction previews, public and private collections in London, the UK, Paris and New York.
  • A diverse and innovative programme of guest lectures and seminars by leading scholars and art world professionals. 
  • Cutting edge scholarship in research-informed modules. 
  • Intensive professional practice sessions that examine how photography is curated, collected, preserved and sold, leading to skills that are key to a successful career in curatorial, commercial, journalistic, editorial and archival work.

Click here to download the full programme prospectus.

Core Curriculum

All of the Master’s programmes at Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London and New York are enhanced by a core curriculum that provides a powerful set of professional skills and critical understandings for our students to mobilize at the completion of their degrees.


ACADEMIC YEAR 2015 - 2016 

September – December 2015
  • Navigating the Art World [Part I]
  • Invention to Art, 1839-1968 
  • Contemporary Photography, 1968-now (15) 
  • Critical Approaches (15)

January – May 2016
  • Navigating the Art World [Part II]
  • Invention to Art, 1839-1968 
  • Contemporary Photography, 1968-now (15) 
  • Critical Approaches (15)

May – September 2016
  • Dissertation (MA only).
    Students prepare a dissertation under the supervision of their tutor.


Dr. Juliet Hacking, Programme Director

Plus specialist consultant lecturers.

Course fees

UK & EU Nationals
Deposit: £500
Semester 1: £ 9,450
Semester 2: £ 9,950
Semester 3: £4,800
Total: £24,700

Non-UK/EU Nationals
Deposit: £500
Semester 1: £10,600
Semester 2: £11,100
Semester 3: £5,500
Total: £27,700

These fees are exclusive of the cost of travel for study visits.

Travel costs: £2,500

How to Apply

Click here to learn how to apply.


Click here to download the full programme prospectus. 

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