Visual Art PostGraduate Semester
HAVE YOU SETTLED?
Are you an artist whose research-based practice is stuck in a holding pattern? Are you yearning to develop a new direction in your studio practice? VCFA’s Postgraduate Semester in Visual Art has been especially developed to address both of these situations.
Stir it up:
Vermont College of Fine Arts is pleased to invite applications to our Postgraduate Semester in Visual Art, an individualized, project-based program of study specifically designed for MFA grads. Participants in this program will develop a substantial research project and/or body of artwork, and the semester will culminate in a public presentation and critical discussion of the work. (When applying
, candidates should identify either research or studio practice as their primary focus—see below.) Upon completion of the PGSVA, Postgraduate Fellows will receive 15
units of academic credit, eligible for most employers’ continuing education reimbursement programs. As an added bonus Postgraduate residencies have been designed to coincide with the regularly scheduled MFA in Visual Art residencies, so you will be part of the dynamic Vermont College community: you will be an active participant in the exciting dialogues with faculty, visiting lecturers, guests and MFA candidates that characterize every residency.
Your Postgraduate Semester will unfold over the course of 27 weeks, which will begin and end with your participation in the MFA in Visual Art on-campus residencies. During the first residency, you and the other Fellows meet with faculty to confront and further refine the conceptual, aesthetic and practical issues at stake in your proposed projects and to develop a detailed plan for the rest of the semester. Fellows who have chosen to focus primarily on studio work will also consult with the faculty to identify the best artist teacher match for their project. The first residency provides all PG Fellows with the opportunity to take part in group discussions and critiques with other students as well as participate in all of the other public lectures, workshops and activities offered through the regular MFA in Visual Art residency program.
Depending upon your focus, you will regularly consult with Faculty Advisors or Artist-Teachers throughout the Postgraduate Semester.
Click here for residency dates.
PG Fellows whose sole focus is research/writing will have an expanded engagement with their Faculty Advisor during both the residency and non-residency periods. Communication during the non-residency period—approximately 6-8 scheduled contacts—will occur through the mail and over the phone. As another expansion on your experience in the MFA program, the mid-semester reporting process begins with you. You will be asked to assess the on-going development of your project, identifying its successes and areas for improvement and articulating any revisions you would like to make. You will then submit this report to your Faculty Advisor, who will engage you in a critical discussion about the growth of the project and its future progression and critical goals. After this discussion, both you and the Faculty Advisor will write separate reports, revising the semester’s plan as needed, and submit these reports to each other as well as to the office. This shift in approach is designed with an eye toward your future independent work, as it keeps you in charge of the project while also taking advantage of the Faculty Advisor’s extensive knowledge and critical insights.
Studio Production Focus
If your PG Semester is geared primarily toward studio production, your project will be overseen by a selected faculty member and you will have at least five studio visits with your Artist Teacher, who will be selected in consultation with the assigned Faculty Supervisor. As noted above, you will direct the mid-semester reporting process. In an initial report you will take stock of your progress toward the goals you set for the semester and re-evaluate your commitment to these goals, identifying any adjustments or shifts that you feel are necessary. You will then submit this report to your Artist-Teacher. Once submitted, the Artist-Teacher will engage you in a critical discussion of both your progress and your assessment of that progress as well as the future direction of your project. After this meeting both you and the Artist-Teacher will write separate reports, revising the semester’s plan as needed, and submit these reports to each other as well as to the office and the assigned Faculty Supervisor. This shift in approach is designed with an eye toward your future independent work, as it keeps you in charge of the project while also taking advantage of the Artist-Teacher’s expertise and the Faculty Supervisor’s role as an engaged outside observer.
The two different PGS tracks (Research and Studio) have been developed to identify and emphasize a particular focus, but projects focused on Research may also involve Studio work and vice versa. The primary difference between these two tracks are whether the PG Fellow wants to work with an Artist-Teacher or exclusively with a Faculty Advisor and what form your culminating project will take (see below).
During the second residency on the Montpelier campus, PG Fellows whose projects are research based will conclude their time in the program by presenting their research projects in a public lecture/presentation. PGSVA participants with a studio concentration will install an exhibition of their work at the second residency. You will be encouraged to consider lecture/exhibition venues on campus as well as in the town of Montpelier. VCFA will help facilitate access to possible sites off-campus pending availability. The second residency will also be organized around extensive feedback and critical responses to the completed project from the faculty, visiting artists, other PG Fellows, and the MFA students in residence.
You Are Here
Our program asks you to submit a proposal for a six-month project that will take the form of a visual culture research project, a studio-based project, or a combination of the two. See Application Questions and Guidance for more details.
Scholarships are available.
for application deadlines.
for current tuition rates.
Application Questions and Guidance
To be considered for a Postgraduate Semester in Visual Art, prospective fellows must send the following to the Admissions Office, Vermont College of Fine Arts, 36 College Street, 05602.
1. Because the Postgraduate Semester is project oriented, applicants need to provide a basic description of the proposed project. Be as specific as possible, identifying: a basic thesis, some of the conceptual ideas, influences and objectives or materials you envision for the project. Briefly describe how this project relates to and/or differs from the work you produced when you were enrolled in your previous MFA program. (Maximum 500 words)
2. In the second residency of the Postgraduate semester, you will be expected to make a public presentation of your project. Please describe the kind of public presentation you envision for your project. If you are planning an exhibition or site-specific work, discuss the type of site and how you envision the audience encountering the work (Maximum 300 words)
3. Describe what you will need from the MFA program semester to help you realize your project. Consider the role that the residency, faculty guidance, Artist-Teacher mentorship, and the VCFA community at large might play in that process. (Maximum 300 words)
1. Describe your current work as an artist since earning your MFA. Talk about the development of your studio practice, intellectual development as well as the social, historical, and/or cultural context of your practice. Explain how the Postgraduate semester will enhance, encourage, and/or support your development as an artist/scholar. Be sure to address why you are applying for a Postgraduate Semester now, explaining why this moment is appropriate for you personally as well as for the development of your practice.
(Maximum 500 words)
- Artist Resume
- If proposing a studio-based project, please provide documentation of no more than 20 artworks that you have made since graduating. Please also provide the following information: An image list, headed with your name, and in chronological order each image with its dimensions, medium, title and date of creation. For time based media work, include total running time and the length of excerpt not to exceed 13 minutes. Work can be submitted on CD or DVD.
- If proposing a research-based project, please provide a writing sample.
(Maximum 1000 words)
- Applicants can specify up to 3 VCFA faculty members with whom they would like to work, explaining why they these particular faculty members will help them to actualize their project. When appropriate, VCFA will facilitate the requested match; however, it cannot guarantee that the desired faculty members will be available. You will be informed of the Faculty Advisor prior to the start of the residency.
Application for Funding
Candidates applying for a scholarship should write a statement about their level of need. (Maximum 300 words)
For questions about the Postgraduate Semester please contact Danielle Dahline, Program Director, firstname.lastname@example.org
or 802.828.8614. For Admissions questions related to the Postgraduate Semester please contact Denise MacMartin, Admissions Director, email@example.com