Master of Fine Arts
Contemporary Art Practice
Concentrations: Studio Practice or Art and Social Practice
Built around a core of research-intensive creative investigation, the two-year, full-residency Studio Practice concentration of the MFA in Contemporary Art Practice degree program is dedicated to interdisciplinary experimentation and the exploration of ideas through the experience of making. Students are supported in a range of production disciplines, from the traditional to the emerging, as they as they consider the multiple ways art can live in and beyond the studio.
A wide variety of resources promoting an environment conducive to challenging and rigorous study includes close ties with resident faculty; dialogue with visiting artists and scholars; seminars in current issues, theory and contemporary art history; exhibition and travel opportunities; collaboration with students and faculty in other disciplines and a comprehensive teaching practicum. The Department has multiple galleries, state-of-the-art computer graphics and multimedia facilities, a foundry, a welding studio, a printmaking studio with etching and lithography presses, a darkroom and wood and metal workshops. PSU's 50-acre urban campus serves as a laboratory for sustainable practices.
Applicants to the Studio Practice concentration are invited from a variety of backgrounds, preferably but not exclusively with BA or BFA degrees in the fine arts. Deadline for applications is February 1 for the following fall term. To learn more about the Studio Practice concentration, please visit psumfastudio.org.
Art and Social Practice
PSU's Art and Social Practice MFA is composed of a unique combination of individual research, group work, and experiential learning. The program's blend of critical and professional practice, collaborative social engagement, and transdisciplinary exploration produces an immersive educational environment. Based in Portland, Oregon. the program operates out of Field Work, a downtown storefront classroom and event space. A weekly student organized visiting artist leture series promotes the understanding of a wide range of approaches and methodologies. An annual conference on socially engaged art practice brings together an international group of artists, curators, scholars and members of the public.
The 90 credit, three-year course operates with a democratic approach that encourages students to shape the direction of their own education, and continually redefine and develop the program as a whole. Students connect their art practice to research in the field through electives and community partnerships, promoting cross disciplinarity. Student work and research is presented annually at the Open Engagement conference leading toward final graduate projects, which are presented in the third and final year of the program.
Each year the Open Engagement conference will be organized around a variety of themes related to the interests of the students in the art and social practice MFA program. As a group the students select three outstanding individuals in the field to invite to the conference as featured participants. The three selected individuals will also join the adjunct faculty at Portland State University for that year leading classes and workshops centered on their own practice.
The program produces an annual intervention event at the Portland Art Museum called Shine a Light, and has exhibited work and created projects for the Whitney Museum of American Art, Betonsalon in Paris, apexart in New York, and Smack Mellon in Brooklyn among other venues and locations.
The program accepts approximately six students annually. The deadline for applying is February 1st. Interested persons are encouraged to make arrangements to visit the program.
For more information about MFA Social Practice program, please visit their website.
Graduate Teacher Education Program
The School of Art and Design works in liaison with the School of Education to provide the fifth year teacher education program to prepare candidates for teaching art in grades K-12.
Harrell Fletcher, MFA Committee, Art & Social Practice
Pat Boas, Art Practices, Mixed Media, MFA Committee Chair
Jen Delos Reyes, MFA Committee, Art & Social Practice
Sean Regan, Art Practices, MFA studies
Brenden Clenaghen, Art Practices, Drawing, Painting, Foundation
Kate Bingaman Burt, Visual/Digital Communication
Julie Perini, Video/Time-Based Media