Fine Art, Academic bachelor in Visual Arts in Ghent

In the Fine Arts specialisation on the Sint-Lucas campus in Ghent, individual artistic practice and orientation are central. The training unites making and thinking, fine art and design. Mono-disciplinary, cross and multidisciplinary projects are taught and supported.

Major-minor

As of the second training phase, the major-minor system offers students the opportunity to build their own artistic practice. In this way they can either advance their mono-disciplinary study (major and minor in the same atelier) or choose a multidisciplinary approach (major and minor in different ateliers).

Those choosing to stay within the same atelier for deep specialisation can choose from a wide range of atelier-related courses. Those choosing to broaden their practice by combining two different ateliers can follow a series of essential courses relating to each atelier. The major determines the whole bachelor training but in the third training phase, students can, if relevant to their individual practice, combine their major with a new minor of their choice. Tutors always advise students on their study choices.

Confronting the general public

In the Fine Arts specialisation, students undertake various artistic projects to present their work to a wider public and establish contacts in the art world. They regularly work with the Ghent art initiative Nucleo for group shows on location and there are well-established partnerships with Vooruit, Croxhapox and ART Cinema OFF OFF. 

Broad overview of the practice of art

During the course, regular contacts with fellow students from other years and disciplines are strongly encouraged. An essential part of the Fine Arts curriculum is coupled with the curricula of the Textiles and Graphic Design courses, enabling students from different disciplines to meet and share horizons. This dialogue creates a culture of debate that teaches students to reflect on their own work and that of others. In this way, the training seeks to provide answers to the complexities of the art world. This broad intellectual and cultural training builds the capacity to situate individual practice in the contemporary artistic and societal context.

Students can map an individual learning path. From the outset and throughout the training, they can choose which discipline(s) they wish to focus on and specialise in. Tutors always advise students on their study choices. In each discipline, experts individually coach students and there is a range of (group) projects and specialised technical and theoretical modules.

The bachelor degree ends with a final project consisting of a presentation of artistic work to an external jury and a thesis in which the student must demonstrate a highly original design or art practice.

Critical insight

Insight and knowledge are essential for building an individual artistic identity and vision. Courses such as Picture Research, Drawing, Professionalization and General Theory sharpen the competencies needed for creating images. Students learn the necessary skills for working in the field and a broad intellectual and cultural training builds the capacity to situate individual practice in the contemporary artistic and societal context.

Ateliers

Seven different ateliers are available to students. Those who wish to follow a mono-disciplinary path choose one atelier. Those who wish to follow a multidisciplinary path choose a main atelier as the starting point, but they can also join other ateliers to ask for advice and help from atelier tutors.

Photography

Light, analogue, digital, studio, location, alternative processes, printing, projection, 2D, 3D

Photography has a huge impact on contemporary image creation. Photos play an important role in many current fields of application: from social media, journalism, and Google Streetview, to forensics and medical imaging. It is against this backdrop that you will work in the Photography atelier within the Fine Art specialisation.

In this atelier we expect you to be interested in the technical aspects of the photographic medium, willing to take a critical approach to the medium and content, and to have a strong interest in contemporary art.  

Basic techniques are addressed via assignments, exercises and individual coaching: different types of analogue and digital cameras, shooting and printing techniques, working in the studio and on location.

This knowledge forms the basis for the development of your individual artistic practice. This can happen within the tradition of the medium, but you can also go in search of a redefinition of the medium in crossovers, interdisciplinary work or innovation in terms of process or content.

A large part of the photographic practice will take place outside the atelier. Working on location and visiting exhibitions, whether or not related to the atelier, are important for your work. The atelier also welcomes guest tutors who give lectures and workshops to broaden your outlook on photography and the visual arts.

At the end of your bachelor degree, you will have gained insight into the medium and be able to use this in a convincing manner to develop a personal artistic oeuvre.

Courses such as ‘Landscape Photography’, ‘Lightscaping’ and ‘Media Art Matters’ provide the relevant theoretical framework.

Printmaking & drawing

Autonomous images, looking & thinking graphically, drawing, life drawing, relief printing, intaglio and planography

Printmaking and drawing are inseparable graphic art forms. As well as life drawing, the printed image and drawing are approached as autonomous forms of expression. You will permanently explore the boundaries of the medium by making the relationship between looking, thinking and feeling visible. A critical approach to printmaking and drawing is assured through lectures, workshops, and exhibitions. Your personal artistic development will be supported via individual coaching by a team of tutors and in dialogue with guest lecturers and fellow students.

In Year 1, you will develop your personal visual language via assignments that can be widely interpreted both in terms of content and form. During the course of the first year, you will discover the potential of different drawing and printing techniques. In Year 2, the focus will lie on further developing a personal visual language and deepening your drawing and printmaking skills. You will have the opportunity to develop your skills in all kinds of drawing and printing techniques including etching, lithography, offset and relief printing. The development of a personal visual language is now central. In Year 3, you will complete a fully independent artistic journey, where drawing and printmaking are used as multiform and autonomous media.

Courses such as ‘Illustration and Printmaking in the 19th and 20th century’, ‘Extra Muros’, ‘Commissioned art, in situ, in public space’ and ‘About artistry’ provide the relevant theoretical framework.

Illustration

Illustration is both an autonomous and communicative medium. Drawing in words and images are elemental in this specialisation. From the outset, you will receive a variety of exercises to develop a solid basis in drawing. Workshops will introduce you to printing techniques and the graphic features of a book. Illustration is more than drawing alone. It is a graphic, unique and fitting answer to a question. The intention is to visualize the tangible world and the world of the imagination. You will develop your own vision and drawing language. Later in the training there are both strictly defined as well as thematic exercises. You will receive assignments in which experimentation, challenging and pushing the boundaries are a must. The concept of illustrating and depiction will be explored in the broadest sense. You will gain insights into the communicative aspects of images, often in combination with words and/or music. You will become familiar with typography, graphic techniques and graphic design computer programmes.

Tutors encourage the development of your artistic identity and interests so that as a bachelor degree student you define your own visual language. Study trips, guest lectures, and collaboration with museums, theatres, authors and musicians all feature on the programme. Renowned and inspiring illustrators and artists from Belgium and abroad are invited to give lectures and workshops.

Courses such as ‘Illustration and Printmaking in the 19th and 20th century’, ‘Creative Writing’, ‘From letter to book’ and ‘Word and image interference in literature’ provide the theoretical framework.

Ceramics & Glass

Plasticity, spatiality, material, moulding, casting, firing, glazing, blowing, turning

Ceramics & Glass are combined courses. In both ateliers, interaction with materials is central to the creation process. Blowing warm glass and working with clay requires skill and technique. These conditions are not limiting, but form a challenge. The atelier is a journey through material awareness and creativity, from thinking with the hands to handling materials. The course explores how to use these crafts in a contemporary context. The creative process can lead to free visual expression or result in applied design. The atelier offers space for autonomous work, installations, performances but also design-related creation. We investigate the exchange between visual art and design in a contemporary context. You will develop a reflective and pragmatic approach to your work. Specific craft techniques such as turning on the potter’s wheel and glassblowing are included.

Through handling materials, ideas grow and this creates an interaction between the head and the hands. You will be individually coached in the development of ideas in conjunction with your skills. Your personal artistic blossoming in relation to the art world is central to this. Via professional technologies and by exploring the boundaries of materials you will gain insight into the behaviour and properties of clay, ceramics and glass. You will develop a safe and environmentally friendly way of working. The expertise of your tutors is complemented by lectures and intensive workshops given by guest lecturers from Belgium and abroad.

Courses such as ‘Clay, ceramics and glass in modern and contemporary art’, ‘Why do things have outlines’, ‘X-Sense’ and ‘Commissioned art, in situ, in public space’ provide the relevant theoretical framework.

‘In the hands of the artist, clay is a medium that can bridge one human mind with another, manifesting thoughts as gentle as a kiss, as lofty as mountains or as cosmic as stars’ Joel Fisher in: The ceramic Process, European Ceramic Work Centre

Mixed media

Installation, audio, video, performance

Central to the Mixed Media atelier is the tension between mastering a discipline and the impossibility of doing so. Disciplines are not ends in themselves, but are sources of inspiration. The atelier starts with the sensory aspects of making art, paying particular attention to new ways of seeing, hearing, smelling and feeling.

Explicit attention is paid to understanding and playing with space by using images and/or sound. A mural, a sound walk, a video performance, a floor painting, a radio play, a street opera, an architectural intervention… are all possible expressions of what can be realised in the atelier.

‘Trial and Error’ is the basic principle, whereby ‘error’ is not necessarily wrong, but very often leads indirectly to something new. One dares to test things and explore the boundaries of the obvious. From the outset of the first bachelor year you will confront the general public with your work. This is a crucial part of artistic growth. The atelier regularly organises ambitious projects and events, both inside and outside the college. The main objective is to distance oneself from striving towards a finished product. Instead of a finished product, you will perform a sensory experiment. You will learn to formulate answers on the basis of a number of parameters within a limited timespan and demarcated space. This approach quickly reveals certain processes and stimulates reflection on your artistic practice.

Tutors function as inspirers and co-researchers who will challenge and help you in your exploratory process. Ultimately, it becomes a collective research in which communication and confrontation are central. Therefore, this atelier likes to be surrounded by other ateliers and regularly goes in search of contact with the public.

Courses such as ‘Dance and Performance, ‘Lightscaping’, ‘Sound Art’ and ‘Media Art Matters’ provide the relevant theoretical framework.

Check out our blog: http://www.lucamixedmediagent.be

Painting

Colour, form, composition, materials, pictorial representation and abstraction, old and contemporary painting techniques, observation, concept

Despite its ancient tradition, the art of painting still manages to reinvent itself. The Painting atelier strives to create the right conditions for personal, pictorial development within the contemporary art scene. Colour, form, material and presentation offer the artist endless possibilities for a fascinating artistic adventure. The focus lies both on building a personal vision on a two-dimensional plane and on the pictorial translation of your view on reality. Painting must be learnt, and this calls for absolute commitment. The basis of painting is formed through exploratory drawings and paintings, with a particular focus on observation. By actively looking you learn to think and behave visually. Painting is also a way of thinking. Exploring other media can help you to further sharpen your vision as a painter.

The Painting atelier is based on strong individualised coaching by a team of tutors. Exploration of the contemporary art scene and positioning yourself in this as an artist are essential. After three years you are expected to have developed a personal oeuvre and viewpoint.

Courses such as ‘Painting, seeing and methods’, ‘Extra Muros’, ‘About theatricality’ and ‘About artistry’ provide the relevant theoretical framework.

Sculpture

Dimensional work, installation, in situ, construction, sculpting, assembling, modelling, casting

In spite of its rich and fascinating tradition, the art of sculpture continues to evolve, innovate and push conventional boundaries. Sculpture is a fascinating visual language distinguished by placing ‘space’ central. The accent of this training lies on personal growth, without ignoring material aspects, diverse techniques and choice of materials.

In Year 1, you will learn basic techniques such as modelling, moulding, welding and simple video techniques. As the course progresses, you will discover what suits you best and you can develop this further. It goes without saying that you will be guided to develop your own personal artistic language and vision. Exercises will stimulate you to search for connections between the world and art, between form and content. Technique and form are always at the service of the content you want to express.

Courses such as ‘History of sculpture’, Commissioned art, in situ, in public space’, ‘About artistry’ and ‘About theatricality’ provide the relevant theoretical framework.

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