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Delve into art from 1960 to the present, developing an in-depth understanding of the artists, theories, and movements that define contemporary art.

The MA in Contemporary Art focuses on art from the 1960s to the present, the program New York combines strands on art history, curatorial studies, critical theory, and professional development. The program gives students key intellectual and practical skills to work in the production, exhibition, and sale of contemporary art. The program is anchored in the close study of visual art and critical thought since 1945, with an emphasis on professional skills and in situ learning in the galleries, museums, and artists’ studios of New York City and beyond. Students are trained to be conversant with art’s objects and ideas as well as the commercial and institutional contexts in which they are embedded, preparing them for a wide range of careers in the art world.

Academic Structure

The program’s first semester supplies foundations in the study of objects, ideas, histories, and exhibitions. In the second semester, we examine the history of art since 2000, surveying key institutions — galleries, auction houses and museums — through which contemporary art flows. Courses on business skills cover key areas in art law, commerce, and fine art valuation. The MA in Contemporary Art culminates in a capstone project which can take the form of a traditional, long-form academic thesis, or a more flexible Master’s Project. Students can choose to submit their work in the summer and thereby complete their studies within one year. Alternatively, they can extend their studies into the fall and either transfer to the Institute’s campus in London or return to New York and pursue core courses in either Art Business or Fine and Decorative Art and Design.

An intensive program of lectures by faculty members and guest speakers of international standing, visits to major New York venues, as well as small group seminars, workshops, and student presentations, help students gain confidence in reflecting and speaking on all forms of contemporary art – from painting and sculpture to video and installation as well as the most recent web-based, collaborative, and multidisciplinary practices.

The Details
  • Prospectus


    Click here for a copy of the MA prospectus.
    The Master’s degree is awarded for 30 taught credits across semesters one and two, as well as the completion of a 6-credit thesis or capstone project.
    In the first semester, Navigating the Art World brings students from all MAs together for faculty lectures and expert panel discussions to investigate the inextricable connections between art and business in today’s economy.
    In semesters one and two, students participate in two field study trips. In semester two, students undertake an internship to gain practical skills and take one elective to broaden their expertise.
    Note: Course offerings subject to change
  • Faculty


    Morgan Falconer (Program Director) is a critic and art historian. He has written about contemporary art for publications including The Times (London), The Economist, Frieze, The Burlington Magazine, The Village Voice, and Art in America. In 2015, Phaidon published his book Painting Beyond Pollock, a history of painting after 1945. He is currently working on a critical history of Postminimalism.
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  • Admissions


    Now accepting applications for MA programs starting in fall 2020. For admissions requirements and an overview of the application process, please click here.
    Space is limited so we strongly encourage qualified candidates to submit their applications as early as possible.
    Deadlines for Fall 2020 MA program:

    • Regular Decision/Final Financial Aid Deadline: March 2, 2020

  • Tuition


    Semester 1: $23,300
    Semester 2: $23,300
    Semester 3: $13,300 (offsite)* or $23,300 (onsite)**
    *Offsite: capstone (thesis or project), can be undertaken remotely or while working
    **Onsite: includes a third semester of coursework, capstone, and field study
    For more information on tuition and program fees, click here.
    For Gainful Employment Disclosure for this program, click here.
  • Field Study Trips

    Field Study Trips

    In addition to frequent visits to art and cultural destination in and near New York City, the MA in Contemporary Art program includes two field study trips during which students immerse themselves in an art world destination. These trips are integrated into the MA Contemporary Art curriculum and are designed to take students to both established and emerging destinations for contemporary art. Past trips have included: Venice Biennale, Sharjah Biennial, Art Dubai, Zona Maco Mexico City, São Paulo Biennial, and Havana Biennial.
  • Questions?


    Some of your questions may be answered in the frequently asked questions section of our website. If you do not see your question, we are happy to help. All prospective students are encouraged to contact our Admissions Office to schedule a one-on-one information session to learn more about the program, the application process, tuition, financial aid, and more.
    Email us:
    Call us: +1.646.438.7234
MA Contemporary Art Meet Morgan Falconer, Director of MA Contemporary Art, New York

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