The MFA program brings together the practice and history of art and design, as well as the theoretical and historical study of visual culture in its wider context. Faculty mentor students as they develop their potential through intensive discourse, investigation of new techniques and materials, and the production of challenging work.
In UB’s MFA program, our goal is to prepare leaders who are ready to meet the challenges and opportunities of cultural production by pursuing a professional studio practice, entering the job market in the cultural sector, or pursuing a career in academia.
All graduate students receive their own studio space and 24-hour access to all labs in any media. Hallmarks of our program include nationally and internationally renowned faculty, visiting artists and a progressive philosophy that encourages cross-disciplinary pursuits in the context of a large, Association of American Universities (AAU), research institution.
Coursework consists of critical theory, studio art courses, art history, and academic electives. Through critiques, presentations, readings, and discussions with faculty, visiting artists, designers, and critics, our students customize their graduate study. Graduate students regularly meet with a committee of three faculty members who serve as advisors for research and practice. The second-year culminates in a thesis exhibition or alternative public presentation and the defense of a written thesis.
The MFA is a rigorous 60 credit, two–year residency program; no part-time study is allowed. The program requires a strong work ethic, the development of a personal artistic practice, and a drive for creative inquiry and production. All graduate students receive their own studio space and 24-hour access to all labs in any media. Hallmarks of our program include nationally and internationally renowned faculty, visiting artists and a progressive philosophy that encourages cross-disciplinary pursuits in the context of a large AAU research institution.
The MFA program enrolls between 20 - 24 students at any given time insuring a high level of contact with a dedicated and professionally diverse group of faculty. Students are supported by the broad range of faculty research interests including: biological arts, drawing, emerging media, graphic design, installation, performance art, painting, photography, print media, sculpture, tactical media, activism, curatorial practices. The Art Resource Center/ARC, an extension of the UB Libraries, supports all Department of Art programs.
Each semester, Teaching Assistants are required to register for one credit of ART 598, Supervised Teaching. These credits do not count towards the 60 credits required for the MFA degree. Teaching supervisions ensure that Teaching Assistants feel supported as they develop their skills as college-level educators.