Visual Studies

Program Overview

The John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design offers the Master of Visual Studies (MVS) degree program. This two-year, full-time professional program has two fields:

  • Curatorial Studies
  • Studio.

The MVS Curatorial Studies experience evolves within a rich environment structured around historical and contemporary approaches to curatorial practices, in conjunction with developments in the visual art, theory, and critical writing. In particular, MVS Curatorial Studies students will focus on the presentational challenges arising from complex modes of visual expression—from object to installation, from text and image combination, temporal as well as audio and new electronic media—within the increasingly dominant forces of the culture industry. The course of study is designed to offer students ample opportunity for the in-depth development of the subject and contents of the Graduating Exhibition, its full realization for public presentation, and the Qualifying Paper in the form of a Catalogue Essay.

The MVS Studio experience evolves within a rich environment structured around new approaches to visual art production, art theory, critical writing, and professional practice. The MVS Studio is concerned with the increasingly complex modes of visual expression through combinations of text, image, movement, sound, and dynamic new electronic media. Accordingly, the participants will examine contemporary art practice and theory through core courses that will give them ample opportunity to develop skills in a variety of projects and media. MVS Studio students pursue a highly focused investigation within studio practice along with research into contemporary theories exploring the visual and spatial relationships within art and cultural production.


Quick Facts

Domestic International
Application payment deadline MVS:

1-Dec-2019

MVS:

1-Dec-2019

Supporting documents deadline MVS:

Portfolio submission due: 8-Jan-2020

All other documents due: 17-Jan-2020

MVS:

Portfolio submission due: 8-Jan-2020

All other documents due: 17-Jan-2020

Minimum admission average MVS:

Overall average of at least a B+

MVS:

Overall average of at least a B+

Is a supervisor identified before or after admission? MVS:

After

MVS:

After

If a supervisor is identified after admission (as per question above), is admission conditional upon securing a supervisor? MVS:

No

MVS:

No

Is a supervisor assigned by the graduate unit or secured by the applicant? MVS:

Graduate Unit

MVS:

Graduate Unit

Program length (full-time only) MVS:

5 sessions

MVS:

5 sessions


​Master of Visual Studies​

Program Description

The Master of Visual Studies (MVS) is a two-year, full-time professional program with two fields:

  • Curatorial Studies: prepares students for contemporary curatorial practice in the visual arts

  • Studio: prepares students to further their visual art practice.

The program normally begins in September.
 

Field: Curatorial Studies

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate bachelor's degree with significant coursework in humanities and cultural theory from a recognized university, or an appropriate BFA degree from a recognized university.

  • Overall average of at least a B+.

  • Applications must include:

    • ​​​artist's statement that includes a description of the proposed body of work in curatorial to be undertaken during the two-year program;

    • full curriculum vitae (CV) with details of exhibition, professional activity, and education;

    • documentation of recent curatorial work;

    • three letters of recommendation;

    • a critical writing sample;

    • transcripts;

    • a portfolio of previous work dependent on the field of future study.

  • Applicants must present a portfolio with documentation of exhibitions including exhibition brochures, curatorial essays, announcement cards, and/or catalogues from curatorial work.

  • Applicants whose primary language is not English and who graduated from a university where the language of instruction and examination was not English must demonstrate proficiency in English. See General Regulations section 4.3 for requirements.

Program Requirements

  • Coursework. Students must complete a total of 6.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) as follows:

    • 4.5 FCEs from the approved course list for curatorial studies

    • 1.5 FCEs in electives. Elective courses are selected in consultation with the student's advisor and are subject to the approval of the Program Director.

  • The internship requirement is normally completed during the Summer session between Year 1 and Year 2.

  • MVS Curatorial Studies students are supervised by an Advisory Panel made up of the Director of the Visual Studies program (or their designate), a graduate faculty member who will be considered to be the student's Principal Advisor, one of the University of Toronto's gallery directors, and an external reader chosen upon approval of the Principle Advisor.

  • The graduating thesis project is composed of an ​exhibition and a qualifying paper.

  • MVS Proseminar, a non-credit course.

  • An FZ (fail) in any one course or a B– grade in any two courses normally results in a recommendation to the School of Graduate Studies to terminate the student’s registration in the degree program.

Program Length

5 sessions full-time (typical registration sequence: F/W/S/F/W)

Time Limit

3 years full-time
 

Field: Studio

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate bachelor's degree with significant coursework in humanities and cultural theory from a recognized university, or an appropriate BFA degree from a recognized university.

  • Overall average of at least a B+.

  • Applications must include:

    • ​​​artist's statement that includes a description of the proposed body of work in studio to be undertaken during the two-year program;

    • full curriculum vitae (CV) with details of exhibition, professional activity, and education;

    • documentation of recent studio work;

    • three letters of recommendation;

    • a critical writing sample;

    • transcripts;

    • a portfolio of previous work dependent on the field of future study.

  • Applicants must present a portfolio with documentation of their artworks. Applicants will also include a fully annotated listing for all portfolio materials that provides detailed information about media, year of production, dimensions, part of a series, full running length (in the case of media artworks), and circumstances of display (in the case of installation works and performance works).

  • Applicants whose primary language is not English and who graduated from a university where the language of instruction and examination was not English must demonstrate proficiency in English. See General Regulations section 4.3 for requirements.

Program Requirements

  • Coursework. Students must complete a total of 6.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) as follows:

    • 4.5 FCEs from the approved course list for curatorial studies

    • 1.5 FCEs in electives. Elective courses are selected in consultation with the student's advisor and are subject to the approval of the Program Director.

  • The internship requirement is normally completed during the Summer session between Year 1 and Year 2.

  • MVS Studio students are supervised by an Advisory Panel made up of the Director of the Visual Studies program (or designate), a studio faculty member of the MVS program who is considered the student's Principal Advisor, a second MVS studio faculty member, and another faculty member (not necessarily a member of the MVS program). The Final Studio Thesis defence requires an external reader chosen upon approval of the Principal Advisor.

  • The graduating thesis project is composed of an ​exhibition and a qualifying paper.

  • MVS Proseminar, a non-credit course.

  • An FZ (fail) in any one course or a B– grade in any two courses normally results in a recommendation to the School of Graduate Studies to terminate the student’s registration in the degree program.

Program Length

5 sessions full-time (typical registration sequence: F/W/S/F/W)

Time Limit

3 years full-time

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