Master's Program in Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art

Aalto University
2 years
Full time
Master's degree
Scholarships available
On campus
Inquire for more information
Aalto University

About this program

Master's Program in Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art

ViCCA explores emerging knowledges and practices at the intersections of visual cultures, curating and contemporary art. We facilitate students to develop and contextualize their own practices within and in between these contexts. The program is open to artists, curators, scholars and practitioners with different backgrounds and experience, who are looking for opportunities to understand, challenge and shift the paradigms of contemporary art and the world around us.

After graduating from this program, 

  • Students have a wide understanding of contemporary and emerging artistic practices, relevant theories and international discourses in the field of visual cultures
  • Students are able to engage in open research processes, learning to combine theoretical knowledge and practices with concrete artistic or curatorial projects
  • Students learn to contextualize their work in relation to different professional fields and social and cultural phenomena.
  • Students will gain tools to work and experiment in their chosen field in visual cultures, curating and contemporary art.
  • Students will have comprehensive research and writing skills, which helps them to prepare also for doctoral studies

Admission requirements

You are eligible to apply in master's admissions if you have a bachelor’s degree. The bachelor's degree must be equivalent to 180 ECTS credits or three years of full-time study. The degree must give eligibility to apply for master’s degree studies at university in the awarding country. The awarding higher education institution has to be a recognized part of the official national education system of the country. It has to be accredited as a degree-granting higher education institution by the country where it is located or by a relevant international organisation (such as UNESCO).

For more information, please visit the university website. 

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Program content

ViCCA is based on the combination of the fields of visual culture, curatorial practice and contemporary art. The educational aim of the program is to intertwine these fields in new ways and to find fresh new possibilities and practices. The program also offers an opportunity to develop, deepen and apply one’s prior skills and knowledge.

Visual cultures is understood in a wide sense, as a versatile range of practices and phenomena. The focus in contemporary arts is in new practices that include artistic understanding on issues related to space, environments and social contexts studied from multiple perspectives. Through our multidisciplinary approach, we encourage students to explore new forms of artistic practice and collaboration with other fields. Curating and mediating are explored as a path for reflection and acting, learning and organizing in art institutions and the public sphere. We aim to explore possibilities to understand, challenge and shift the paradigms of contemporary art and the world around us.

Studying in ViCCA consists of theoretical studies, artistic workshops, experimental laboratories, concrete projects, excursions and field studies, as well as a thesis writing process. Theoretical and artistic studies are seen as responding critically and engaging with the current practices of arts, curating and mediating in the field of contemporary art.

The program’s pedagogical models are based on shared expertise and exploratory learning and are applied in order to create an open conversational and dialogic space and community for learning and acting.

The program offers its students a broad variety of possible minor studies, which are available in the School of Arts, Design and Architecture and the other schools of Aalto University. Including studies or a minor from other disciplines of Aalto (design, media, business, technology…) as a part of one’s studies in ViCCA is strongly encouraged as it opens up new professional career paths.

Scholarships & funding

Several scholarship options are available. Please check the university website for more information.


For non-EU/EEA citizens: €15000/year


Upon completion of the program, students will graduate with a Master of Arts (Art and Design) degree. 

Career paths

The students graduating from the program can build their own creative positions and professional agencies in the multi-faceted, constantly changing and multi-disciplinary world. Students can deepen their own artistic, curatorial or theoretical practice and the students who have a background outside of visual culture and contemporary art can enrich their own fields of expertise with a new point of view – and a broad array of new methods of working with it. Beside the cultural and art field, graduates can be employed also in universities and other sectors in society, working as experts in multidisciplinary groups of professionals.

Students that graduate from the program can also work in a variety of already existing professions in the field of arts and culture, such as art museums, galleries, artists’ associations, art and culture projects or initiatives, and foundations or trust funds.

About this institute

Aalto University

Aalto University is a multidisciplinary community of bold thinkers, where science and art meet technology and business. We are committed to identifying and solving grand societal challenges and building an innovative future....

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Contact info

Aalto University

Otakaari 1B
02150 Espoo

Phone no: +358947001


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