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Open Access Publications from the University of California

About Department of Art Practice

UC Berkeley’s Department of Art Practice provides rigorous practical, conceptual, and critical training within the context of a world-renowned public research university. The department’s mission is to prepare students for professional lives within contemporary art, while acknowledging that these can take multiple forms and approaches. With MFA students, greater emphasis is placed on developing long-term artistic practices. Undergraduate students, particularly within a university, can expect a broader range of training and career possibilities. The department emphasizes an ethical, global scope, with a necessary encouragement of diversity of viewpoints and modes of practice. It offers innovative media-specific, and interdisciplinary courses leading to B.A. and MFA degrees. Studio and seminar courses provide essential skills within conceptual and critical frameworks. 

The faculty consists of national and internationally recognized artists working across a range of media including painting, drawing, photography, printmaking, ceramics, sculpture, installation, performance, video, animation, sound, and the newly emerged fields of programming, game design, and virtual and augmented reality. While strongly remaining a studio art program, the department embraces other disciplines, including design, with active collaborations with other departments to offer hybrid art courses as part of an expanded vocabulary of artmaking. We emphasize disciplinary skills within a historicized interdisciplinary approach, incorporating multi-form and social practices coupled with rigorous critical approaches. The department continues its commitment to educating students for the contemporary world by addressing ongoing global, sociopolitical and cultural shifts, as well as incorporating new technologies as tools for innovative art practices.

For more information, please visit the department site.