Britain’s creative industries are worth £92 billion, employ 2 million people and are growing twice as fast as the rest of the economy. This course will give you the skills to join this growing industry.
The tradition of Art runs deep at Sunderland, but we don’t stand still. We’ve built on this history and experience, adding innovation and modern teaching approaches to create a course that gives our graduates the edge.
Our Fine Art team, all working artists, have a wealth of professional practice and subject expertise to help you realise your art aspirations. Guided by these experts you will have the freedom to explore your creative interests across a broad range of Fine Art practice including painting, printmaking, digital photography, film, sound, drawing, sculpture and performance.
Working collaboratively, you’ll learn to see the bigger picture and will develop highly adaptable skills, alongside your technical abilities. Throughout the course you’ll work towards live outcomes, building your confidence as an artist to promote yourself, your art and to understand the impact you can have as an artist in society.
- According to the National Student Survey 2018, our Fine Art course is ranked 6th in the UK for Overall satisfaction, 7th for The teaching on my course, and are in the top 25% in the UK for Assessment and feedback and Organisation and management
- Work in your own individual studio space with access to well-equipped workshop facilities which replicate real-life artist working environments
- Create and publish your own artist book showcasing your studio practice; this will be invaluable for promoting your skills to future employers
- Access to FabLab Sunderland, part of a global network of digital fabrication spaces that provide 3D printers, laser cutters, vinyl cutters and a CNC router
- Access to our ‘Creative Lives’ lecture programme giving you many examples of how artists live, work and thrive in the creative industries
- The prestigious Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art is now based at the University so you will see the latest contemporary art exhibitions
- Have the opportunity each year to exhibit publically and be involved in our participatory art, Fine Art in Society projects, while building towards your Degree Show in the final year
- Work on collaborative projects with students from Design courses
- Our Art and Design courses were ranked 2nd overall in the UK in the 2018 UK Engagement Survey
- Our Art and Design courses were ranked 2nd in the UK for Assessment and Feedback, 2nd in the UK for Retention and Progression, and 3rd in the UK for Employability in the 2018 UK Engagement Survey
You’ll be allocated your own studio space from day one. This will be your space to build and develop your creativity alongside fellow students.
The first year is all about exploration. You’ll experience a range of working methods, honing and testing your technical, making and artistic ability, while building your studio practice. At the end of the year you’ll show your achievements at your first exhibition.
In the second year you’ll start to link your artistic practice with live experiences. You’ll work collaboratively with students from other disciplines in the ‘Integrated Creativity’ module; replicating the practice of some the world’s biggest artists who draw on a range of creative talents. You’ll also start to consider your place in society; how you want to work and where your art can take you. You’ll undertake a project with a live outcome that could be a group exhibition, a workshop in the community or a project with a local school. All of this will also extend your understanding of the creative industries and develop your team working skills, which will be essential for professional life.
Your final year is about building your professional practice, skills and experience to prepare you for your Final Degree Show, graduation and beyond. You’ll produce your own book, showing a window into your practice and skills, which will help you promote yourself to employers. Understand what it takes to bid for funding or secure an exhibition space; all before critically selecting your work for public exhibition at your Degree Show.
Assessment methods vary between modules. They include studio presentations of artwork, a variety of written projects, and exhibitions.
Part-time students study the same course as full-time students. If you study this course on a part-time basis you will typically complete 40-80 credits in a year, rather than the 120 credits of full-time students. All modules are taught during the daytime, and you will be studying alongside full-time students.
Working in the creative sector is all about following your passion for originality – using your imagination to develop new ideas and techniques and to challenge the norm.
Fine Artists gather skills that are essential to the world of work. Creative thinkers are called for in a range of sectors beyond the Creative Industries thanks to the range of transferable skills. This course is an opportunity for self-development and exploration. We’ll support you to develop your professional practice, build your confidence as an artist to promote yourself, your art, understand the impact you can have on society and explore where your art can take you.
To enhance employability, we encourage you to develop a Professional Portfolio throughout your time at the University.
This includes an online art blog and art book publication of your work, with an artist statement and a CV; this will be invaluable for promoting your skills to future employers.
We aim to prepare you to become a confident professional, with transferable skills. Increasingly, creative workers follow a ‘portfolio’ career comprising a range of roles such as teaching in schools, colleges and universities, artist residencies, creative practitioner and as a practising fine artist. This makes for a really flexible lifestyle enabling you to extend your professional contacts, build your artistic practice and take advantage of opportunities as they arise.
Almost half of creative workers are self-employed, compared to 15% across the workforce as a whole and 95% of creative businesses are micro-businesses with less than ten employees according to The Creative Industries Federation, July 2017. This course provides sessions on becoming self-employed and our ‘Creative Lives’ lecture programme offers case studies of creative careers.
Destinations for Fine Art graduates also include public arts, curating and other areas within the creative industries. Some of our graduates work as artists and show their work in commercial galleries. Others have gone on to work in museums, galleries and many different types of employment and self-employment. This course will encourage you to consider employment options both in the creative sector as well as in other types of industry. A number of our students have chosen to progress to postgraduate courses such as our well-regarded MA Fine Art course, Teacher Training PGCE, PCET SCITT teacher training programmes.