MFA in Art and Media

NYU Abu Dhabi's Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Art and Media is a terminal degree in the visual arts. It is designed as a full-time, interdisciplinary studio art program that sits at the crossroads of practice and theory with a focus on research-based art practice. The MFA degree consists of 60 credits over two years of residential study.

The MFA program immerses students in contemporary research and art practices while training them to become deep thinkers and artistic innovators. 

Courses emphasize artistic experimentation within a context of theoretical, cultural, and historical study. Its multidisciplinary coursework bridges disciplinary skills and diverse bodies of knowledge. The program leverages Abu Dhabi's location as a global hub for the exchange and dialog in the arts and culture as the MFA in Art and Media emanates outward from the Emirates to the world

Students can choose to work in-depth in a particular area or across multiple arts disciplines, including:

  • Painting and Drawing
  • Photography
  • Sculpture and Installation
  • Printmaking
  • Fiber Art
  • Video
  • Performance
  • Digital Arts
  • Sound Art

The MFA program is uniquely positioned to create new discourses in the field by virtue of its geographic location and the student body it attracts. Students from vastly different cultures, beliefs, and orientations gather here and are creating new visions of what Abu Dhabi, the Emirates, the Gulf, and the wider region are and can be. This is supported directly by the flows of NYU’s global network and Abu Dhabi’s proximity to points east of traditionally western-centric art discourses.

Tarek Al-Ghoussein, MFA Inaugural Program Director

Abu Dhabi is an exciting crossroads that is at once global, contemporary, pan-Arab, and a MENASA hub, while also remaining committed to the preservation of local, indigenous practices and aesthetics. The MFA program’s educational mission and style reflect this cultural richness and complexity with a methodology informed by a global perspective. While the art world knows no boundaries, it is still true that art coming from specific regions and is inflected with the landscapes, materials, traditions, and art practices of that place. The MFA program leverages this by using regional art and cultural spaces as learning laboratories, while also networking students into the art ecosystem. The program regularly invites international and regional artists, curators, and thinkers with diverse practices to critically engage with students’ work, their conceptual and theoretical questions, and technical and formal concerns during the two years of study.

Student Feature

Never Stop Learning

Even as an artist with years of experience, Elizabeth Dorazio always knew she wanted to pursue a Master of Fine Arts.