Two Programmes in MFA

The Department of Fine Arts offers two MFA degree programmes in the disciplines of Painting, Sculpture, Print Making, and Art History and Visual Studies.

Our academic programs are designed to integrate the practice of Fine Arts with an understanding of the social, economic, and intellectual histories of art traditions from around the world. Students are encouraged to understand the roots and intentions of their own artistic journeys, and situate their work in the context of the larger debates and trajectories of art traditions. Students from the practical disciplines are encouraged to explore the world of books, reading, writing and research. Conversely, students from the theory disciplines work in studios to grapple with the pleasures and challenges of converting inert, obdurate, physical materials into living works of art.

The students of the practice-based disciplines submit a dissertation on their own works at the end of the final semester, while the students of the Art History and Visual Studies discipline submit their dissertation on a topic of their choice, subject to the approval of the concerned faculty.

The instruction in the Department is essentially tutorial-based in nature, it involves a close working relationship between students and teachers. The academic curriculum is strengthened and complemented by incorporating workshops by eminent visiting artists, artist camps, conferences and lectures by distinguished scholars on a regular basis.

The MFA programs in Painting, Print Making and Sculpture disciplines respectively are two-year courses meant for students with a BFA/BVA to develop their personal language, and consolidate their position as practitioners in the field of Contemporary Indian Art. The courses are designed to equip students with the practical, conceptual and theoretical skills required to pursue their careers as professionals in this field. Approximately 50% of the marks are for studio-based practice where students work closely on a one-on-one basis with the concerned faculty of their respective disciplines to develop critical understandings of issues that are of relevance to their own works. All studio courses are supplemented by slide shows, visiting artist camps, workshops throughout the academic year.

Apart from the Core (mandatory) courses, the students in the three major disciplines are encouraged to take Elective courses in the other disciplines of artistic practice — Sculpture, Painting, Print Making, Installations, Photography, Landscape art, Video, Land Art, Performance Art, Digital and New Media Arts — in order to systematically explore and enlarge their vocabulary in new and un-expected ways. The student is expected to work under the guidance and supervision of the faculty from other disciplines for this elective course. It is the student’s duty to ensure that the work expectations and requirements are clearly understood and approved (in writing) by the faculty of both disciplines, before the commencement of the Elective course. The details of the core and elective courses are provided in the syllabus on the website of the University of Hyderabad.

The Department of Fine Arts began offering a two-year MFA degree in Art History and Visual Studies since 2010, to complement and strengthen the strong Art Practice disciplines of our existing program. It is meant for students with a BFA/BVA degree, who wish to continue to pursue their interests in the historical, textual, critical and theoretical dimensions of artistic practices and traditions. In addition to the core and elective courses in the curriculum (which also includes an art practice component), students are introduced, as much as possible, to ongoing and related issues in areas such as Museum and Heritage studies, Aesthetics, Historiography, and Curatorial Practices.

The program is conceived as a rigorous inter-disciplinary academic initiative that seeks to develop close and nuanced understandings of local aesthetic traditions, heritage and conservation efforts in India, with particular reference to the city and environs of Hyderabad. It is designed to initiate and facilitate close engagements with the realities and challenges of contested claims, un-resolved disputes that embed architectural and built spaces in our vicinity. In a city that is increasingly marked by wholesale expansions and rapid urbanization, such a focus enables us to deal with the real-world implications of the rights and limits of collective ownership and community participation. The program strives to become increasingly and actively connected to the networks of scholars, institutions, and organizations that are involved in these fields and spaces.