MA in Curatorial Studies

MA in Curatorial Studies

The Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College

View of Theresa Hak Kyung Cha: audience distant relative, Hessel Museum of Art, Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, 2022. Photo: Olympia Shannon.

October 4, 2022
MA in Curatorial Studies

Application deadline: February 1, 2023
The Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College
33 Garden Road
Annandale-on-Hudson, New York 12504-5000
United States

T +1 845 758 7598

The Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College (CCS Bard) is an intensive course of study in the history of contemporary art, the institutions and practices of exhibition making, and the theory and criticism of art since the 1960s. CCS Bard is distinguished by its singular resources: the Hessel Museum of Art, an institution dedicated to innovative and experimental approaches to curating with a rich permanent collection; the Library, one of the leading contemporary art research collections in the US focusing on post-1960s contemporary art; and the Archives, which contain archives and manuscripts of preeminent contemporary art curators, inventive commercial art galleries, artist-run spaces, artists’ initiatives, and the archives of contemporary artists. Together, these resources support one of the world’s most forward-thinking teaching and learning environments for contemporary art research and the study of contemporary curatorial practices.

The two-year graduate program at CCS Bard offers seminars in art and exhibition history, cultural and social theory, and curatorial practice, with an intensive focus on postcolonial and decolonial theory, Black studies, queer and feminist theory, ecology and infrastructure, media theory, aesthetics, and embodiment and performance studies, among other areas. The curriculum is specifically designed to deepen students’ understanding of the intellectual and practical tasks of curating exhibitions and projects around contemporary art, particularly within the complex social and cultural situations of present-day arts institutions, as well as focusing on interpretive and critical writing.

The graduate program culminates in individually curated thesis exhibitions at the Hessel Museum. Students are also offered multiple opportunities to realize other public presentations, curatorial projects, and exhibitions at CCS Bard, and in collaboration with partnering institutions, which include most recently EMPAC in Troy, New York, as well as Abrons Art Center, The Kitchen, The Portal, and PARTICIPANT INC., all located in New York City. Additionally, CCS Bard supports student scholarships, and paid summer professional development and work placements at institutions around the world.

The program has an internationally distinguished faculty, including curators and other museum professionals, scholars in the humanities and social sciences, artists, and critics. Faculty teaching at CCS Bard during the 2022–23 academic year include: Vic Brooks, Ann Butler, Dawn Chan, Lauren Cornell, Christian Ayne Crouch, Tom Eccles, Haytham el-Wardany, Lia Gangitano, Nida Ghouse, Candice Hopkins, Peter L’Official, Kobena Mercer, Serubiri Moses, Cori Olinghouse, Dina A. Ramadan, Karin Schneider, Ian Sullivan, and Evan Calder Williams.

Each semester, CCS Bard invites a distinct group of artists, curators, art historians, and critics to visit the program, meet with students, participate in classes, or give a lecture as part of the Speaker Series. Visitors to the program this year include: Makayla Bailey, Howie Chen, Lynne Cooke, Furen Dai, Eva Mayha Davis, Aria Dean, Silvia Federici, Kat Griefen, Krist Gruijthuijsen, James Hoff, Roberto Jacoby, Dean Kissick, Christina Ko, Sophie Lewis, Ani Liu, Tobi Meier, Legacy Russell, Jacolby Satterwhite, Mike Sperlinger, Vincent Valdez, and Gee Wesley.

CCS Bard alumni now include over 340 figures working prominently at institutions in the US and internationally. Graduates have also been part of curatorial teams for many touchstone exhibitions including documenta and biennials in Berlin, Carnegie International, Liverpool, Lofoten, Porto Alegre, and Venice, among others.

Interested students must apply online to the master of arts in curatorial studies program by the February 1, 2023 deadline. For more information about the program, the application process, or applying for scholarships, please visit our website. Interested students are also encouraged to contact CCS Bard to further discuss the program by calling or sending an email to ccsadmissions [​at​]

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October 4, 2022

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