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BA (Hons) Curating

  • UCAS
    P130
  • Entry requirements
    A-level: BBB
    BTEC: DDM
    IB: 33 points overall with Three HL subjects at 655
  • Length
    3 years full-time
  • Department
    Visual Cultures
Raphael Koh

Course overview

Do you want to advance your knowledge of contemporary curating and pursue a professional career in the field of curatorial practice?

The term 'curating' is used to refer to a wide range of activities including organising art exhibitions, festivals and professional events, staging of lecture series, public conversations, reading groups, and even the management of our lives on social media. This course explores how curating allows us to stage culture and put knowledge into circulation in multiple ways, and to place its practices in a historical and critical context.

Throughout this degree you will:

  • Study core modules in the history and theory of curating, alongside electives in art history and visual culture
  • Gain practical experience of working on a group project with one of several public sector partner organisations
  • Have the opportunity to join historical and theoretical study with curatorial practice in the contemporary public realm

At the end of the degree you will take part in an exhibition of group projects with partner institutions. 

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Janna Graham

Modules & structure

Level 4

You take the following core modules:

Module title Credits
  Modernities 30 credits
  Curating and the Public Sphere 30 credits
  Artefacts and Histories 30 credits

You also choose one option module from the following list:

Module title Credits
  Seeing and Showing 30 credits
  Space and Time 30 credits
  Beyond Boundaries 30 credits

Level 5

At Level 5, you will study the following core modules:

Module title Credits
  Museums, Galleries, Exhibitions 30 credits
  Curating after the Educational Turn 30 credits

You will also choose four option modules from the Department of Visual Cultures.

Level 6

At Level 6 you will complete a dissertation and study the following compulosry module:

 

Module title Credits
  Curating the Contemporary 30 credits

You will also choose two special subjects. Options include:

Module title Credits
  The Truth in Painting 30 credits
  Sexual Poetics 30 credits
  Philosophy and... 30 credits
  Film Fables 15 credits
  Archive and spectacle 15 credits
  Animating Architecture 30 credits
  Popular Modernism 15 credits
  Patterns of Perception: Part 1 15 credits
  Ornamentation 15 credits
  Fashion as a Dialectical Image 15 credits
  Fact of Blackness I: Subjects of Difference 15 credits
  Beckett & Aesthetics: Bodies and Identity 15 credits

Assessment

Visual Cultures assessment are 100% coursework. Normally this consists of essays, sometimes accompanied by creative projects, group projects, multi-media projects, presentations, symposia, reviews, and studio work

Credits and levels of learning

An undergraduate honours degree is made up of 360 credits – 120 at Level 4, 120 at Level 5 and 120 at Level 6. If you are a full-time student, you will usually take Level 4 modules in the first year, Level 5 in the second, and Level 6 modules in your final year. A standard module is worth 30 credits. Some programmes also contain 15-credit half modules or can be made up of higher-value parts, such as a dissertation or a Major Project.

Download the programme specification, relating to the 2017-18 intake. If you would like an earlier version of the programme specification, please contact the Quality Office.

Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.

Entry requirements

A-level: BBB
BTEC: DDM
International Baccalaureate: 33 points overall with Three HL subjects at 655

These requirements relate to 2018 entry. For 2017 entry please check the programme specification.

Equivalent qualifications
We accept a wide range of qualifications equivalent to the ones listed above. This includes:

Access: Pass with 45 Level 3 credits including 30 Distinctions and a number of merits/passes in subject-specific modules
Scottish qualifications: BBBBC (Higher), BBC (Advanced Higher)
European Baccalaureate: 75%
Irish Leaving Certificate: H2 H2 H2 H2

If your qualifications are from another country, find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world

English language requirements
If English isn’t your first language, you’ll need to meet our English language requirements to study with us. 

For this programme we require:

IELTS 6.0 with a 6.0 in writing and no element lower than 5.5

If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for degree-level study.

Read more about our general entrance requirements

Department

In the Department of Visual Cultures we explore and produce
new forms of art history and theory

Visual Cultures

Study in a department that combines an innovative approach with passionate academics, and makes full use of London's many opportunities to study art history and curating.

Our approach

Our degree programmes deliberately move away from chronological histories: the innovative art of our time arises out of the conflict of ideas. So you’ll explore the subject in the context of pertinent social, cultural and political issues and phenomena.

That means not only investigating artefacts you might see in museums and galleries, but also those making up our everyday visual and technological environment: including urban landscapes, film and video, and popular culture.

Our academics

Our academics are passionate about the subject and are at the sharp end of theoretical developments in everything from architecture to spatial theory. Some are practising artists and curators, which makes our degrees relevant and exciting.

Our location

Our teaching takes advantage of the many galleries, art spaces, museums, cultural facilities and specialist libraries in London.

Find out more about the Department of Visual Cultures.

Skills & careers

The BA Curating programme provides excellent career opportunities as you will graduate with practical skills and an understanding of the opportunities and challenges of cultural sector work in today’s economic climate. As a graduate of this programme you will have developed excellent critical and inventive abilities, confidence and capabilities to work in entrepreneurial ways with new ideas and concepts, and experience challenges and possibilities of collaborative work.

The experience gained from working in partnership with our public sector partners will also prepare you to develop and sustain public sector partnerships.

This course will also provide a solid foundation should you wish to progress on to further study in curating, museology and cultural management, as well as MAs in art history, cultural studies and philosophy. You can find out more about the career options open to you after you graduate on our Visual Cultures careers page.

Student profiles

Julia Alvarez

"Goldsmiths helped me to develop the skills required to operate both in the contemporary art world and work with local government and other businesses to build art into the fabric of society."

"I'm responsible for the overall running of BEARSPACE Gallery from selecting and promoting artists to managing staff. BEARSPACE regularly shows as part of art fairs and larger international projects and I am ultimately responsible for the success and development of the business. The South London Art map was started as a promotional tool for galleries in Deptford and now represents over 150 galleries and studios in Deptford, running tours and SLAM Fridays events to lobbying government for the needs of art organisations.

Goldsmiths helped me to develop the skills required to operate both in the contemporary art world and work with local government and other businesses to build art into the fabric of society. Whilst at Goldsmiths I also worked as an intern for other local galleries which gave me practical experience of the day to day running of a gallery. I am still in contact with my peers some of whom are artists, gallerists or academics in the arts. I have also been asked to return to Goldsmiths to give talks on professional development, and work on joint projects with academic departments."

(Studied BA (Hons) History of Art)

Marianne

"My tutors were particularly inspiring and I also met many like-minded and interesting friends"

I curate Public Programme events at Tate Britain and Modern: talks, symposia, film screenings, performances, courses and workshops. Managing the Late at Tate Britain since 2009, I have curated Late at Tate Britain: Diffusions and Late at Tate Britain; Perfoming Architecture and contributed to many other programmes.

I recently completed a two month research secondment, producing and presenting a research paper: How can architecture productively disrupt our experience of the art museum? 

During my time at Goldsmiths I enjoyed the chance to think laterally about contemporary art. I developed research, writing and presentation skills, all of which helped me grow creatively and led to several freelance curating and writing projects. My tutors were particularly inspiring and I also met many like-minded and interesting friends, with whom I collaborated and developed projects. A year after graduating I got my current job at Tate.  

(Studied MA in Contemporary Art Theory)

Gina

"The course I undertook at Goldsmiths provided a strong foundation from which to approach and respond to contemporary art practice and I still find I draw on my research interests in projects I am developing now."

Whilst studying the MA History of Art (Twentieth Century) [the original name for the MA Contemporary Art Theory] at Goldsmiths I focused on phenomenology and wrote my thesis on the embodied encounter with darkness and its implications for experiencing moving image, with specific consideration of Jean Luc Godard and French new wave cinema.

After graduating, I started working with artists within a commercial gallery context, firstly at Emily Tsingou Gallery who at the time represented Jim Shaw, Karen Kilimnik and Georgina Starr, followed by Max Wigram Gallery and lastly as director at Alison Jacques Gallery. I realised during this time that I wanted to develop in a curatorial direction within an institutional context and applied for my current position at Camden Arts Centre in 2009.

My role involves working on all aspects of our exhibitions from their inception, including research, contributing to programming decisions, developing the practical realisation of exhibitions with the artist from fabrication through AV and presentation concerns, writing exhibitions texts, leading tours of the exhibitions and public events, negotiating loans, right through to organising transport, insurance and customs paperwork.

The course I undertook at Goldsmiths provided a strong foundation from which to approach and respond to contemporary art practice and I still find I draw on my research interests in projects I am developing now.

Alongside my position at Camden, I also do some freelance writing and curating and am currently co-curating a residency project called ‘Potlatch’ with Grizedale Arts in the Lake District. The project takes its name from the native American Indian ritual which has been a subject of interest for me since reading Bataille as part of my studies and will be an umbrella theme for a group of Scandinavian artists invited to Cumbria to participate in a programme of performances, events and symposia.

(Studied MA in Contemporary Art Theory)

Fees & funding

Find out more about applying.



The approval process involves the specification of this programme being peer reviewed on 25 January 2017. Final approval will be granted at this stage or shortly afterwards following any clarification and amendments. If there is a change to this timeline this page will be updated.

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