HKU Master of Fine Arts
The MAFA is particularly suitable to cultural practitioners who are interested in experimenting with artistic approaches that are sensitive to difference and have an anchor in social-political contextualizations.
Cultural expressions - including art, institutions, everyday practices - are never neutral. They are shared, learned and therefore negotiable. Artistic practices do not only participate in sharing and learning, but also have an important say in the negotiation processes. They can intervene, and even more so, they have the power to make the impossible tangible. Their role is to formulate and reformulate descriptions of objects, to initiate and form relations and undo others, to work from encounters in a world that we will never fully grasp.
Having an anchor in social-political contextualization means:
Unpacking Attention: How do we focus on what is important and connect to current social political struggles? What attracts us to particular social-political-aesthetic formations? How can we unpack this attraction as something that is shared, learned, but also negotiable.
Unlearning to relate in order to relate anew: Our minds and bodies are woven into a (historically grown) web of relationships that has an impact on our cultural expressions. In the MA we are dedicated to exploring these relationalities. We are on one hand fostering sensitivities towards these relationalities, also those that are beyond a grasp of consciousness. On the other hand, we explore how to bring these sensitivities into methods, methodologies, artistic expressions, and language that can be shared, made public and learned.
Acknowledging difference: What does it mean to shape one’s artistic practice with a distinct attention to difference and social political context? What can we learn from feminist, queer, decolonial and post-colonial, Black and indigenous and disability studies and practices, while acknowledging their specific cultural expressions and struggles? What are the conditions for imagining a different order of things while practising a rigorous engagement with (artistic) communities in place.
The programme consists of seminars, long and short-terms workshops, collaborations with other institutions and within the HKU, collectives and (art) communities, excursions, studio visits and tutorials. Moreover, the MA programme is in vivid exchange with its sister programme MA Scenography. Various artists, cultural practitioners, activists, curators, designers and theorists share their ways of knowing, sensing and working along with professional insights with Master of Fine Art students.
In order to get an idea of the context of the MA, collaborations and artistic expressions that co-emerged from the MAFA, please have a look at the following:
Lecturers: Tiong Ang, Christina Della Giustina, Ola Hassanain, Maria Hlavajova, Nancy Jouwe, Annette Krauss, Katia Krupennikova, Falke Pisano, Domeniek Ruyters, Henk Slager
Recent guest lecturers: Daniel Aguilar Ruvalcaba, Lara Almarcegui, Maja Bekan, Alexis Blake, Staci Bu Shea, Binna Choi (Casco), Valentina Desideri, Kris Dittel, Nikos Doulos (Expodium), Denise Ferreira da Silva, Silvia Gardini, Julia Geerlings, Ola Hassanain, Anette Hofman, Sofía Hernández Chong Cuy, Max Jorge Hinderer Cruz, Maria Hlavajova (BAK), Philippine Hoegen, Syafiatiduna (Kunci), Christina Li, Heidi Linck, Mascha Madörin, Àngels Miralda, Nat Muller, Wendelien van Oldenborgh, Emily Pethick, Rory Pilgrim, Laure Prouvost, Rachael Rakes, Ilse van Rijn, Timur Si-Qin, Sakiko Sugawa, Ferdi Thajib (Kunci), Elke Uitentuis, Rolando Vazquez, Reinaart Vanhoe, Rieke Vos, Friso Wiersum (Expodium), Riet Wijnen, Bart Witte (Expodium), Danielle van Zuijlen
Art Institutions and close collaborators in Utrecht:
BAK Utrecht (including fellowship programme): https://www.bakonline.org/
Casco Art Institute: Working for the Commons: https://casco.art/
Impakt festival: https://impakt.nl/
M.C. Julie Yu, Travelogues with Prompts, 2020
Parvaneh Karimi & ( k a - a re - n), nomadic installation and performance, 2021
Gerardo Gomez Tonda, Origin Stories, 2020