Visual Cultures: Practice and Activism MRes | Middlesex University London
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Visual Cultures: Practice and Activism MRes

Learn about the course below
October 2017
September 2017 (EU/INT induction)
2 years part-time
Low Residency
£7,500 (UK/EU)
£12,500 (INT)
Course leader
Catherine Dormor

Our approach to Visual Cultures frames it in terms of what it can do alongside what it can know. Be inspired by a team of world-renowned teaching and research staff, who will challenge you to explore existing paradigms, develop an individual approach to visual culture research, and articulate your thinking as you develop your 'manifesto' and portfolio.

Why should you study MRes Visual Cultures: Practice and Activism at Middlesex University?

This exciting course operates at the forefront of a rich, interdisciplinary academic and creative landscape. Pushing at the limits of Visual Culture, we encourage students to approach the field from a variety of perspectives.

Working with, and feeding into, learning networks beyond the University, we aim to influence and inform the emerging and developing communities of professional, activist, creative and research practice around Visual Cultures. We champion creative and activist practices as both methods of engagement and as subjects of enquiry, drawing on our 130 year history of experimental and progressive attitudes to art and design through our origins as the Hornsey College of Art.

Course highlights

  • World-class teaching and research from leading Visual Cultures academics, activists, artists, curators and practitioners across the Art & Design Research Institute (ADRI) and Lansdown Centre for Electronic Arts (LCEA)
  • State of the art facilities including the latest digital resources, a range of new and traditional equipment and specialist archives and collections
  • Direct access to London's art and design world and cultural industries including galleries, museums, organisations, artists, libraries and collections
  • Part-time and low-residency options established to meet the needs and ambitions of individual students and to embed your learning within your existing networks and practice
  • Off-site networking and exhibition opportunities with a range of London-based, UK-wide and international partners
  • As a student of this course you'll receive a free electronic textbook for every module.

What will you study on the MRes Visual Cultures: Practice and Activism?

We offer two modes of study, part-time and low-residency, which run concurrently over two years. The part-time mode allows students to integrate the course with ongoing personal and professional commitments; the low-residency mode enables students from around the world to follow the course through short, intensive periods of on-site study, supported by online teaching, resources and communities.

Throughout the course, students and tutors will work together. Teaching and learning is based upon a model of knowledge exchange and negotiation, foregrounding student-led initiatives.

  • Year 1 Modules

    • Visual Cultures: Sites & Texts, Articulations & Mappings (40 credits)

      The first semester starts with an intensive, week-long Visual Cultures Boot Camp, introducing the historical and theoretical foundations, contestations and generations of 'visual culture' as a field or discipline. The following weeks will build upon emerging themes through sites, (con)texts and mappings, exploring a range of practice and research methodologies and examining networks and collaborative partnerships through a variety of means, including site visits, workshops, lectures, discussions and online activities.

      As the semester progresses you will negotiate, map and articulate your own sites and texts, working towards the publication of a 'manifesto' for practice and activism. Assessment will be through a critical and reflective portfolio.

    • Making Public: Pitching a Project, Developing a Network (40 credits)

      The notion of 'making public' is central to this course as a strategy under constant negotiation, in relation to the 'public', 'publics' and 'publication'. The second semester will focus on building networks and developing an ambitious proposal, which you will realise and 'make public' in Year 2.

      Your proposal will identify potential activities or actions that realise your manifesto, and locate your practice through relevant contexts, forms and sites. As such, you will engage with appropriate Visual Culture research methodologies in its various theoretical, creative, practice-based, activist and networked modes. Assessment will be by critical and reflective portfolio and presentation.

  • Year 2 Modules

    • Making Public: Presentations & Publications (Final research project, 100 credits)

      In Year 2 your focus will be on realising and 'making public' your research project, by mobilising the relevant principles, processes and strategies of practice and/or activism. 'Making public' can take a variety of forms, which you will negotiate with your tutors. Examples include a publication of critical reflective writing, a body of engaged activist practice, or an exhibition of practice with an accompanying text.

      You will be assessed on your critical reflection, documentation and 'publication', supported by practice/ research portfolios, the terms of which will be open to negotiation.

You can find more information about this course in the programme specification. Module and programme information is indicative and may be subject to change.

How is the MRes Visual Cultures: Practice and Activism taught?

This course is flexibly designed to put you at the centre of your learning by using a range of teaching and assessment approaches that take into account your individual interests, abilities and ambitions in Visual Culture.

As part of your learning, you'll be required to actively participate in activities and engage with your fellow students, both individually and collaboratively. You will also be supported by some of the best facilities and equipment in the country with access to specialist workshops in a vast range of disciplines, such as ceramics, woodwork and textiles.

As well as your immediate peers on the programme, there is much going on across the campus and university that you can access, collaborate with and benefit from, such as the Art & Design Research Institute (ADRI) which provides a useful network for postgraduate students as well as seminar and ideas in progress sessions.

  1. UK & EU
  2. International
  3. How to apply
  1. UK & EU
  2. International

How can the MRes Visual Cultures: Practice and Activism support your career?

You will be well positioned for work in a range of roles in the creative and cultural industries, as well as within activist networks and communities, and academic areas where the notion of embedded practice and social engagement is a rich and shifting ground. The course is also designed to facilitate the continuation of practice and research to doctoral level study.

Other courses

Fine Art MA

Start: October 2017

Duration: 1 year full-time, Usually 2 years part-time

Code: PGW103

Printmaking MA

Start: October 2017, September 2017 (EU/INT induction)

Duration: 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time

Code: PGW140

Art and Social Practice MA

Start: October 2017, September 2017 (EU/INT induction)

Duration: 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time

Code: PGW99L

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