Visual Art Interdisciplinary MFA program

Visual Art Interdisciplinary MFA program

Carnegie Mellon University College of Fine Arts

London Williams. Photo: Sean Carroll.

November 30, 2023
Visual Art Interdisciplinary MFA program
Carnegie Mellon School of Art
5000 Forbes Avenue
CFA 300
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213
United States

The MFA program at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Art is a three-year, interdisciplinary, experimental, program that provides its students with a challenging and supportive context in which to expand and develop their work and thinking as artists. Ranked among the top ten graduate programs in art by US News and World Report, the program views art making as a vital social, critical, and intellectual pursuit. All MFA students automatically receive full tuition funding, regardless of background or citizenship status.

The program is accepting applications for fall 2024 enrollment through January 16, 2024.

CMU’s MFA program is housed in a new facility, opened in 2020 and exclusively for graduate art students, that provides a cohesive space for the community. It includes: 18 individual studios, each approximately 300 square feet with large windows for ample natural light; common study and community areas, a kitchen; and administrative offices. This facility also includes a 1,200 square foot flexible-use space that supports varied coursework, group critiques, roundtable seminars, public programing, and more.

The MFA program’s three-year structure is designed to provide the time, resources, and support for in-depth multidisciplinary research, the development of new technical and conceptual skills, and the possibility of radical shifts in the materials, themes, and processes of one’s practice.

CMU provides extensive mentorship and support for each of its MFA students. Limited to a cohort 18 students, the program is overseen by four core faculty members. These core faculty, along with the School of Art’s additional 18 full-time faculty, provide each student with one-on-one advising and mentorship. A robust program of visiting artists, critics, and curators also provides ample opportunities for studio visits and critique.

The program is unique in its emphasis on interdisciplinary research and artistic research. Housed within one of the most respected research universities in the United States, graduate students take advantage of a wealth of electives, cutting edge technologies, and study with leading faculty both within the School of Art and across the university. Graduate students are also able to extend their practice beyond the campus in their second and third year by selecting a recognized artist, curator, writer, or scholar of their choice to work with as an advisor over the course of each year.

All MFA students serve as Graduate Assistants (GAs) for each of the six semesters in which they are enrolled in the Program. This experience affords students opportunities to develop university-level pedagogy and curricula and to further advance their own understandings of contemporary art making within an academic environment.

CMU’s MFA program seeks students from a wide variety of backgrounds with diverse artistic and academic interests. The cohort is composed of artists from across the country as well as around the globe. While some students arrive with an art undergraduate degree, others arrive with different educational backgrounds, such as a humanities degree or experience in other creative fields like architecture, music, or fashion.

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Carnegie Mellon University College of Fine Arts
November 30, 2023

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