Manchester Metropolitan University

BA (Hons)

Art History and Curating

2018 entry

Features and benefits of the course

  • The course works closely with arts institutions and galleries in Manchester and beyond, helping foster professional skills and contacts.
  • Access to the regular Tuesday Talks of internationally acclaimed speakers organised by the Whitworth Art Gallery.
  • Opportunities to learn a foreign language and access the Erasmus international study programme.
  • Opportunities for national and international study trips.
  • You will have the opportunity to take part in Unit X, an innovative unit offered to students across Manchester School of Art that encourages interdisciplinary study and collaboration on an external-facing project.

About the course

BA (Hons) Art History and Curating combines the study of Art between 1800 and the present day with the study of curatorial practices during the same period, together with the essential practical skills and critical perspectives necessary to the contemporary curator. The programme addresses a diverse range of artists, movements, exhibitions and display spaces as well as theoretical approaches to art history and curating.

Typical units of study may include

Year 1

In year 1 you will study the art of the modern period (1850 – 1950), which will include an examination of the practices of display, collecting and exhibition making during this period.  You will consider the meanings of images and objects and how meanings are created through exhibitions.

Core Units
Art History and Curating 1: Modern Art and Curatorial History: 1800-1950

The unit aims to introduce students to the history of art during the modern period (c.1800-1950), together with key ideas surrounding practices of display, collecting and exhibition making during this period. The unit will cover ideas and movements such as: Romanticism, Realism, and Modernism; relationships between modern art and urban modernity; theories of modernism and the avant-garde; relationships between modern art and other spaces such as the rural; relationships between modern art and identity; specific movements such as Impressionism, Expressionism, Futurism, Cubism, Dada; cultures of collecting; practices of display; development of art galleries and museums; power and exhibition making.

Art History and Curating 2: Interpreting and Curating

The unit provides an introduction to art historical approaches and other interpretational theories and practices through the exploration of examples of art and other cultural artifacts, and their use and display.

Unit X

This unit  encourages collaborative, interdisciplinary practice and shared experience. There are lectures and talks from key research staff, students and external experts, tutorial group meetings, and presentations. The set projects will vary from year to year and will designed to be responsive to creative opportunities. The course encourages students to respond to contemporary media and as such, it is a live unit in which we discuss films, television, comics, games and the news relating to the media in any specific week.

Likely Optional Units
Contextualising Practice 1
You are allocated to one of four pathways addressing programme-based clusters of cognate practice areas. Lectures, seminars, guest speakers, visits around cultural contexts and professional issues.
Contextualising Practice with Language 1
You are allocated to one of four pathways addressing programme-based clusters of cognate practice areas. The unit includes lectures, seminars, guest speakers, visits around cultural contexts and professional issues.

Year 2

In year 2 you will explore the spaces of art production and display between 1950-2000 examining social and political conditions of the time and their relationship to art. You will look at how art has been and continues to be interpreted from key theoretical positions and how interpretation takes place in gallery settings through designing an education programme or event for a gallery or museum.

Core Units
Interpretations: Theories of Art History and Curating

The unit addresses key approaches, methods, and theories relevant to the interpretation of art, visual/material culture, and sites of display during the period c. 1800 to the present. The unit - forming two concurrent elements - examines the way that art and visual/material culture can be interpreted, both theoretically and curatorially. In the first element of the unit, interpretive strategies for the analysis of art and space include, for example, iconography and iconology, semiotics, phenomenology, Marxist approaches to cultural production and consumption, the social history of art and Identity Politics, feminist approaches to art and design, post-colonial theory, picture theory, cultural geography and psychoanalysis. The second element of the unit focuses on interpretive strategies employed by museums and galleries to engage different audiences including, for example, case studies of educative programmes, artists' responses to collections and digital projects.

Post-War Art and Curatorial History 1950-2000

This unit explores art and spaces of art production and display c.1950-2000 in different geographical locations, considering approaches to art historical study and curatorial practice. The unit addresses the historical conditions and art historical and curatorial issues arising from the assemblage of art during the late-Modern and Post-Modern period. Movements in art practice and its relationship to different types of art institution and space will be interrogated chronologically and via gallery visits, whilst focusing on the surrounding social and political factors.

Unit X

This unit explores collaborative and interdisciplinary art and design practice.  You will have the opportunity to engage in a range of external-facing learning opportunities which will encourage collaborative, interdisciplinary practice and shared experience; this may take the form of spending time outside of the university and working within the creative community and the public domain.

Likely Optional Units
Contextualising Practice 2

Delivery of critical, historical and professional issues to enhance your development within practice-based clusters. Delivery to clusters of cognate practice areas. Content consists of selected thematic options in critical and historical areas plus cluster-wide professional and employability issues, facilitating and enhancing the development of both studio-based work and identity as a practitioner.

Contextualising Practice with Language 2

Delivery of critical and historical issues to enhance the student's development within practice-based clusters.  Content consists of selected thematic options in critical and historical areas facilitating and enhancing the development of both studio-based work and identity as a practitioner. Modes of delivery include lectures, seminars, tutorials, guest speakers, visits and placements.

Year 3

In year 3 you will examine the work of contemporary artists and curators, looking at how the range of media and art practices adopted by contemporary artists has generated new approaches to curating exhibitions in both local and global environments. You will develop curatorial projects informed by these debates.

Core Units
Contemporary Art and Curating: 2000-the Present

The unit will consider contemporary art practices and art spaces (2000-present) in relation to the areas of painting, sculpture, public art, installation and site-specific work, lens-based practices, digital art, participation, relational aesthetics, activist art, commercial galleries, biennials / mega-events, National Portfolio Organisations, R & D labs and pop-up spaces.The aim of the unit is to explore the curatorial, technical and aesthetic forms of these practices as well as their discursive, institutional, professional, political, global, and ethical contexts and ramifications

Framings: The Contexts of Art

This unit deals with the different contexts within which art (both historical and contemporary) is produced, seen, interpreted and circulated.  This unit deals with the different contexts within which art (both historical and contemporary) is produced, seen, interpreted and circulated. This subject will be approached from historical, theoretical and practical perspectives, examining for example, developments in the arts funding system, interpretation and education in gallery contexts, the role of art criticism and critical communities and arts marketing stategies

Unit X

On the third year Unit X, there is a student authored final project leading to a showcase of finished work. The unit includes a brief generated by the student, which leads to the presentation of a significant body of final work. Collaborative and interdisciplinary work can be incorporated into the project in relation to the professional context and ambition of the student.

Likely Optional Units
Contextualising Practice 3
Programme of research and critical analysis of cultural and professional issues related to a student's individual practice interests.
Contextualising Practice with a Language 3
Programme of research and critical analysis of cultural and professional issues related to a your individual practice interests. A negotiated project focused around an individually defined area appropriate to your aims and ambitions.

Programme Review

Each programme of study that we offer undergoes an annual review to ensure an up-to-date curriculum supported by the latest online learning technology. In addition, we undertake a major review of the programme, normally at 6-yearly intervals, but this can take place at a more frequent interval where required. Applicants should note that the programme currently provided may be subject to change as a result of the review process. We only make changes where we consider it necessary to do so or where we feel that certain changes are in the best interests of students and to enhance the quality of provision. Occasionally, we have to make changes for reasons outside our control. Where there are changes which may materially affect the current programme content and/or structure, offer holders will be informed.

Methods of Assessment

End of unit course work assessments including: projects, essays, blogs, group work and exhibitions. Ongoing formative assessment and feedback.

Assessment Weightings and Contact Hours

10 credits equates to 100 hours of study, which is a combination of lectures, seminars and practical sessions, and independent study. A 3 year degree qualification typically comprises 360 credits (120 credits per year). The exact composition of your study time and assessments for the course will vary according to your option choices and style of learning, but it could be:

Study
  • Year 1 20% lectures, seminars or similar; 80% independent study
  • Year 2 20% lectures, seminars or similar; 80% independent study
  • Year 3 20% lectures, seminars or similar; 80% independent study
Assessment
  • Year 1 100% coursework
  • Year 2 100% coursework
  • Year 3 80% coursework; 20% practical

Teaching Staff

Your studies are supported by a team of committed and enthusiastic teachers and researchers, experts in their chosen field. We also work with external professionals, many of whom are Manchester Met alumni, to enhance your learning and appreciation of the wider subject. Details of departmental staff can be found at: http://www.art.mmu.ac.uk/staff/

Typical entry requirements

These typical entry requirements apply to the 2017 academic year of entry and may be subject to change for the 2018 academic year. Please check back for further details.

UCAS Tariff points/Grades required

112-120

Minimum 112 - 120 at A2 or equivalent (which can include Foundation Diploma in Art & Design) . A Level General Studies is not accepted.

Specific GCSE requirements

GCSE English Language at grade C or grade 4. Equivalent qualifications (eg. Functional Skills) may be considered

Non Tariffed Qualifications

Pass Access to HE Diploma in a relevant subject with a minimum 112 UCAS Tariff Points

International Baccalaureate points

26

IELTS score required for international students

6.0 with no element below 5.5

There’s further information for international students on our international website if you’re applying with non-UK qualifications.

Your career prospects after the course

This course is appropriate for careers in a range of cultural roles e.g.

gallery/museum curator, archivist, art historian, arts manager, cultural event organiser, art writer/journalist, as well as being appropriate for postgraduate study.

94%

In 2014, over 94% of our graduates went directly into work or further study within 6 months of graduation

DHLE survey 2014, for all respondents available for employment or further study and whose destinations are known

How do I apply for this course?

Applications through UCAS

Remember to use the correct institution code for Manchester Metropolitan University on your application: our institution code is M40

Open Days

Come and find out more about this course and our facilities at our open days.

Book now for the:

Manchester Open Day Wednesday 21st June

Unistats Information

Find out more about Unistats and the Key Information Set.

Find out more about Unistats and the Key Information Set.

Confirmation of Regulator

The Higher Education Funding Council for England is the principal regulator for the University.

Important Notice

This online prospectus provides an overview of our programmes of study and the University. We regularly update our online prospectus so that our published course information is accurate and up to date. Please note that our programmes are subject to review and development on an ongoing basis. Changes may sometimes be necessary. For example, to comply with the requirements of professional or accrediting bodies or as a result of student feedback or external examiners’ reports. We also need to ensure that our courses are dynamic and current and that the content and structure maintain academic standards and enhance the quality of the student experience.

Please check back to the online prospectus before making an application to us.

The provision of education by the University is subject to terms and conditions of enrollment and contract. The current Terms and Conditions Applicable to the provision of the University’s Educational Services are available online. When a student enrolls with us, their study and registration at the University will be governed by various regulations, policies and procedures. It is important that applicants/students familiarize themselves with our Terms and Conditions and the Key Contract Documents referred to within. Applicants will be provided with access to an up to date version at offer stage. This can be found within the Information for Offer Holders document.

Undergraduate Study