MFA in Contemporary Art Practice

Master of Fine Arts in Contemporary Art Practice

Concentrations: Studio Practice or Art and Social Practice


Studio 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 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-
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 January 31, 2015 for the following Fall
term. To learn more about the Studio Practice concentration, please visit


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 on the PSU campus, and in our space at the King School in Northeast Portland. The programs's flexible residency model allows for travel and even the ability for students to reside outside of Portland during their course of study. A weekly conversation series on KPSU Radio promotes the understanding of a wide range of approaches and methodologies.

The 90 credit, three-year course leans toward 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 publicly, culminating in final graduate projects presented in the third and final year of the program. Each student also produces a book for the Social Practice Reference Points series on a prominent theme or person, or a workbook.

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, Betsonsalon 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 January 31, 2015. Interested persons are encouraged to make arrangements to visit the program.

For more information about MFA Social Practice program, please visit their website.

MFA Faculty

Jen Delos Reyes, MFA Committee, Art & Social Practice
Harrell Fletcher, MFA Committee, Art & Social Practice
Ian Whitmore
, Art Practices, Studio MFA Coordinator
Pat Boas
, Art Practices, Mixed Media, MFA Committee
Julie Perini, Video/Time-Based Media, MFA Committee
Sean Regan, Art Practices, MFA studies
Brenden Clenaghen, Art Practices, Drawing, Painting, Foundation
Patrick Rock, MFA Studies, Gallery Coordinator
Kristan Kennedy, MFA Studies
John Motley, MFA Studies
Erik Geschke, Art Practices, MFA Committee

MFA Questions