MFA in Contemporary Art Practice


Program Description



Contemporary Art Practice is changing dramatically.

The creative force of the artist to not only produce artifacts but also to perform and activate has broadened the opportunity for artists to enter diverse fields. Artists react to observations of the world we live in, translating experience into art production and interventions. Merging genres and media –for example drawing with sound recording, or land art with video – creates new contexts for the expanding field of art practice.

The Contemporary Art Program at the Master’s level emphasizes meeting the public ¬– be it in the museum or public square, self-initiated or organized by curators – to create a framework for an individual history of practice. Dialogues with Srishti faculty, practitioners from around the world, architects, horticulturists, scientists, designers and more develop a platform for building life-long art practices and networks. Making and critical thinking are fundamental to the aims of the program.

Nurturing the curiosity within the program into tangible projects and goals is accomplished through unique opportunities to engage with media and technological advances as well as traditional craft making practices. Students intersect with multiple perspectives, experiment in new knowledge domains, and gain insights into their potential to act and impact through art practice.

Key Values in the Curriculum

  • Developing a studio practice.
  • Explorations with materials using a variety of methods.
  • Understanding art through criticism and theory.
  • Expansive, and Interdisciplinary dialogue.
  • Play & Experiment.
  • To explore 2D and 3D ‘form’.
  • To share/foster knowledge.
  • To engage in critical reflection.
  • To develop collaborative strategies.
  • To connect with communities.

Course Structure

  1. Studios encourage active, contextual learning where students develop core disciplinary skills and knowledge. Studios facilitate collaborative and creative design solutions to complex, open-ended problems
  2. Workshops provide intense learning experiences in making and doing, across the different disciplines.
  3. Internship with an industry or a design studio is compulsory for students at the end of 1st year
  4. Self Initiated Project is an end of the semester challenge that allows the student to engage in research/inquiry or design based projects. Students begin by writing their project proposal and defining the scope of their project and they are mentored by faculty/design professionals.
  5. Electives are liberal arts courses aimed to cultivate intellectual and reflective abilities in students and motivate them to probe deeper and approach their design process in a holistic manner.
  6. Capstone Project is the culmination of the research, capabilities, and knowledge gained over the last three semesters. Students are required to submit their design output and a mandated thesis document. Students are mentored during this final project and go through seminars to get feedback from faculty and peer groups

Learning Approach

  • This two-year program encourages students to develop a sustained inquiry, exploration, body of work and contextual argument to locate their practice with a contemporary artistic language and cutting-edge positioning.
  • It also looks at the sub-cultures of artistic production and management. It provides a framework to develop practical skills and critical analysis to challenge and rethink existing knowledge systems, usages, and applications of art, society and creative economies.
  • An interdisciplinary curriculum that includes exposure to ideas through, visuals, texts, artifacts and audio dealing with the history of media, arts and sciences, influences on visual culture and memory, perception, cognition and cultural production.
  • Contextual learning for engagement and intervention through participatory approach and engagement with communities, sites, and agendas.
  • Building skills to enable creating installations, create public art, develop performances, build surreal objects, or design poetic experiences, be it with sound or image, through an object, artist book or a stitched fabric.
  • As a space for creativity and rigorous analysis, students develop projects that may require intensive research, fieldwork, and collaborations through the following learning environments:
    • Studios
    • Labs
    • Contextual site/specific studios
    • Independent Research & Practice



  • Analyze and reflect on unique concepts socially, culturally, historically and environmentally
  • Analyze and reflect on artistic practices through independent research and practice also with practitioners from diverse fields.
  • Use of various artistic practices to engage with different social spheres in art project.
  • Work experimentally to explore materials, contexts, and experience
  • Develop innovative ideas of practice through making.
  • Combine analysis and interpretation with making.
  • Locate or create diverse opportunities for developing art projects either directed toward the art market or to alternative spaces and communities.
  • Engage in continuous learning, new developments, and practices.


  • An artist's studio practice oriented toward the international art market (galleries, fairs, museums, residencies).
  • Working with creative industries such as but not limited to film production units, advertising, web designing, graphic designing.
  • Public art and site-specific projects.
  • Working for social change in collaboration with NGO’s or other organizations.
  • Pursuit of higher academic degrees or further studies in art, art theory, art criticism, curatorial practice, cultural studies.
  • Arts management, development of curatorial practice.
  • Connection to the Srishti network of projects and professionals.


For further information, kindly email

Ayisha Abraham at or

Ina Kaur at

Last updated Jan 2019

About the School

Srishti Institute of Art, Design, and Technology is a non-residential institution founded in 1996 by the Ujwal Trust with the objective of providing art and design education in an environment of creat ... Read More

Srishti Institute of Art, Design, and Technology is a non-residential institution founded in 1996 by the Ujwal Trust with the objective of providing art and design education in an environment of creativity to maximize the individual’s potential.The Ujwal Trust also manages Srishti's sister institution, the prestigious Mallya Aditi International School. Read less