Congratulations to the first Arts, Media and Society cohort!
The Groot-Auditorium of the Academy building was recently stage to the graduation of the first cohort of the BA-track Arts, Media and Society. This impressive room, normally only used for PhD defenses and inaugural lectures by professors, was accommodated a ceremony attended by 17 students and their guests while still taking the 1,5 meters into account.
Arthur Crucq, track leader of Arts, Media and Society, is very proud of the first graduates of the BA Arts, Media and Society: ‘I am very curious about their next step and how their future career will evolve. Despite the uncertain times we are living in, the first signs are good. Some will proceed in a Master or Research Master program and will continue to develop their unique set of academic skills. But I also heard of students starting jobs in galleries or who are setting up their own initiatives back in their countries of origin. In any case, we will keep a close eye on our alumni because their professional future will shape the future of Arts, Media and Society too.’
Global issues in art
The first graduates started with the Arts, Media and Society track in 2017. As a track of the BA Art history, Arts, Media and Society takes into account the increasing effect of media on the distribution of ideas and images and acknowledges the embeddedness of contemporary art within society and popular culture. The program therefore departs from a hybrid approach that builds on art historical context, critical analysis of the media that artists and their audiencies use, and analysis of the societal networks and debates in which artists and their audiences are involved. Contemporary artists are for instance concerned with issues such as biotechnology, ecology, diversity and terrorism; issues that affect humans on a global scale. Therefore, it was from the outset onwards clear that Arts, Media and Society should be fully taught in English and attract students from around the world.
Alumni about Arts, Media and Society
Anna: ‘There’s no one way to describe how I feel right now, it’s a mix of emotions: on one hand, I’m incredibly excited and proud of this achievement, as it has been a personal milestone for me for quite some time. On the other hand, I’m a bit overwhelmed and anxious as getting my bachelor’s also means I’m getting closer and closer to finishing my studies and entering ‘real’ adulthood. I will start the ResMA Arts and Culture at Leiden University next week, through which I am planning on specializing in contemporary art practices. My professors have encouraged me to do a Ph.D. and pursue a career in research and academia, and while I want to keep that option open for myself, I do want to gain more experience in the field beforehand, by for instance working for a museum.’
Zofia: ‘It’s quite strange to hold diploma in my hands, but also very satisfying. I have this new sense of accomplishment. I felt it throughout the programme as well, but now comes together with pride. It was a very intense final year: not only because it was the last chapter, but it coincided with the pandemic. Completing my thesis and minor under such circumstances just made me more proud of myself and other students and staff for adapting so quickly. I’ll be going back to my hometown Warsaw and work on my writing, a core piece of my identity and one of my major interests since I was little. I plan to write about the art world, culture, and politics, and publish them in Polish ‘art and culture’ magazines and newspapers. I’m lucky to be familiar with the cultural scene in Warsaw, as it gives me access to people who are open to publishing my writing. I also hope to establish where and what I’d like to do for my master’s; I plan on returning to the Netherlands.’
Challenges to which contemporary art poses us
Arts, Media and Society complements Art history. It is the perfect track for students who are primarily interested in modern and contemporary art. Students who want to put that art into both an art historical context but who are also fascinated by the challenges to which contemporary art poses us and the questions that come forth from that. Questions that rarely lead to uniform answers. Learn more about Arts, Media and Society.
Photos by Monique Shaw