- A course that puts particular emphasis on collaborative practice in response to an expanded understanding of place
- Includes a unique residency-based learning programme – arts residencies are a significant part of the contemporary arts industry and of contemporary art making
MA: 1 year FT, 2 years PT.
Other routes are available – see ‘Learning Pathways’
start date: April
2022-23 Term dates
Welcome Week: 20–22 April 2022
25 Apr – 6 Jun: Module 1 – Approaching Residencies (teaching weeks on-site at Dartington)
13 Jun – 15 Jul: Module 2 – Urban Places (off-site residencies)
25 Jul – 27 Aug: Module 3 – Contemporary Remote (off-site residencies)
5 Sep – 7 Oct: Module 4 – Themes in Residency (off-site residencies)
17 Oct – 16 Jan 2023: Module 5 – Major Project / Dissertation (Independent work with tutorials on-site at Dartington and online)
2023-24 Term dates
Welcome Week: 12-14 April 2023
Spring term: 17 April – 7 July 2023 (12 weeks)
Module 1 (On-campus residential): 17 April- 19 May
Module 2 (Off-site residential): 19 – 30 June
Summer Term: 24 July – 13 October 2023 (12 weeks)
Module 3 (Off-site residential): 7 – 18 August
Module 4 (Off-site residential): 25 September – 6 October
Autumn Term: 23 October 2023 – 2 February 2024 (13 weeks)
Module 5 (On-campus residential): 23-27 October
Major project install & presentation (On-campus residential): 15-26 January
Dissertation hand-in: 2 February 2024
2024-25 Term dates
Welcome Week: 8-12 April 2024
Spring term: 15 April – 5 July 2023 (12 weeks)
Module 1 (On-campus residential): 15 April- 17 May
Module 2 (Off-site residential): 17 – 28 June
Summer Term: 22 July – 11 October 2023 (12 weeks)
Module 3 (Off-site residential): 5- 16 August
Module 4 (Off-site residential): 23 September – 4 October
Autumn Term: 28 October 2023 – 7 February 2025 (13 weeks)
Module 5 (On-campus residential): 28 October – 1 November
Major project install & presentation (On-campus residential): 20-31 January
Dissertation hand-in: 7 February 2025
next application deadline
All upcoming application and decision deadlines can be found here.
Some qualifications are offered part-time – these are indicated below.
To get the most out of their course and of being part of our learning community, many students choose a fully immersive experience for the residential taught periods of their course, staying on our stunning 1,200 campus on the banks of the River Dart with full board accommodation.
MAster's (ft/pt; 180 credits)
Students will need to live onsite or nearby for the first six-week module at Dartington, spending 10 residency days at each of three other host organisations in subsequent modules (see below). Full board accommodation onsite is available (but not mandatory) throughout terms 1 and 2 for international students.
Postgraduate Diploma (ft/pt; 120 credits)
A full-time (1 year) or part-time programme (2 years) with 4 x 30 credit modules. Students taking the full-time option will study all four modules during the first two terms. For full details on part-time pathways, please contact us.
Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits)
A full-time programme with 2 x 30 credit modules. Students will study both modules during term one.
First module only (30 credits)
Modules from this course can be studied on a standalone basis, with 30 credits allocated per module.
To apply for the accredited single module option, apply in the usual way, selecting the ‘single module’ option during the application process.
Arts and Place is a transdisciplinary residency-based programme focusing on the complexities of ‘the field’ as a place of practice, exploring its imaginative as well as material processes.
This course is a new framework and network for field based research and post studio practice, and draws upon pivotal historic and contemporary artistic debates which examine and re-examine our relationships to place, both urban and rural and to nature and landscape. Arts practitioners are invited to expand upon a repertoire of imagining, experiencing, knowing and representing our relationship to landscape and environment through a series of residencies.
Arts residencies are a significant part of the contemporary arts industry and of contemporary art making and play a critical role in building experience, experimentation and competencies; as well as pathways for the exchange of skills and knowledge, inter-cultural learning and understanding. We are increasingly confronted with complex challenges that require new ways of knowing and forms of collaborative engagement and practice, which can be addressed in this master’s enquiry.
To further expand the meaning and context for place and site responsive art, the Arts and Place programme invites guests, including scholars, writers, curators, artists, activists, filmmakers, to share their practice in relation to each module and focus of study. Past Arts and Place guests have included Executive Director of the Holt/Smithson Foundation Lisa Le Feuvre; Curator and Program Manager at CLUI, Aurora Tang; Co-directors of Lungs Project Angela Burdon and Sheyda A. Khaymaz; Director of Soundart Radio Lucinda Guy; Creative Director of Future Everything Irini Papadimitriou; Co-curators of Control Shift, Rod Dickinson, Martha King, Becca Rose; artists Heather Ackroyd, Jessica Auer, Emma Bush, Barton Hargreaves, Oswaldo Macia, Ruth Maclennan, Claire Macleod and Dave Macleod; Susan Stockwell, Deborah Stratman.
The programme structure includes a 6-week residency at Dartington Arts School for a 30 credit introduction to fieldwork methodologies and post studio practice with seminars, screenings and workshops. This is followed by three 30 credit residency modules (urban, remote and themed) with partner organisations. The programme concludes with a 60 credit dissertation or major project module. The part-time pathway divides the four 30 credit modules over 2 years, concluding with the final major project.
To see content from the arts and place programme and work by arts and place students please visit the course Instagram @arts_and_place >
programme structure & modules
During MA Arts and Place, there is one six-week timetabled teaching period at Dartington when you must live on site (or nearby in Totnes or the vicinity) and participate in the learning community, unless you choose an online-only pathway. From March to June 2021 there are three 10-day fieldtrips when you will be in residence at three other locations in the UK.
Outside of the six-week period at Dartington and the three 10-day fieldtrips, international students (only) can request accommodation and full board onsite for terms 1 and 2 and this would require you to participate in the learning community activities. Alternatively, you can opt to live nearby or anywhere in the UK and travel to and from Dartington for the six-week taught period and to and from the three fieldtrip locations.
We have a limited number of residential places available for international students. Apply as early as possible.
Module One: Approaching Residencies (30 credits)
A grounding in methods and concepts to support collaborative practice and inter-transdisciplinary engagement with complexity. Using the Dartington estate as a residency focus, this module is an introduction to the history, theory and practice of making artworks in residency contexts. Techniques for engaging with site and community in relation to your own practice are developed.
Module Two: Urban Places (30 credits)
This module explores the development of arts practice in an urban residency context through fieldwork with a residency host and the development of a project. Students extend their understanding and creative engagement with the complexity of place into urban contexts.
Module Three: Contemporary Remote (30 credits)
This module explores the development of arts practice in a rural or digital residency context through fieldwork with a residency host and the development of a project. It further develops students’ creative engagements with the complexities of place.
Module Four: Themes in Residency (30 credits)
This module explores the development of arts practice in response to themed residency contexts through fieldwork with a residency host and the development of a project. It allows students to make work in response to key issues such as social justice, climate change, the role of cultural workers in contemporary society and well-being.
Module Five: Final Major Project (60 credits)
The final major project enables students to pursue a creative project of their own interest, or an academic essay interrogating arts and place, arts practice in residency theory and practice, or a combination of project and essay (50/50). The outcome is presented in the public domain at Dartington or at one of the host residency locations.
residency network hosts
Allenheads Contemporary Arts, Northumberland
Established in 1995, Allenheads Contemporary Arts hosts residencies for creative practitioners that bring together myriad combinations of themes in contemporary art and contemporary living in both the local and global context. Artists often work in collaboration with other disciplines such as science, astronomy, environment and philosophy and there is an astronomical observatory onsite.
OVADA, the Oxford Visual Art Development Agency, is an artist-led organisation – a contemporary art gallery and development space that provides opportunities for both artists and audiences. OVADA presents a dynamic programme of exhibitions and events and a range of learning opportunities from their city centre venue and other off-site locations.
artdotearth, Dartington, Devon
art.earth works openly and collaboratively, celebrating and supporting artists who are concerned either explicitly or implicitly with environmental or ecological issues and community. The project produces events and conducts research, working as internationally as possible while acknowledging absolutely the power and lure of the local.
Peacock Visual Arts is a centre for contemporary art focusing in particular on print media. They have print and digital studios and run The WORM – a contemporary art space.
Cornubian Arts & Science Trust (CAST), Cornwall
CAST aims to promote participation, appreciation and learning in the visual arts and to encourage interdisciplinary dialogue and collaboration across the arts and sciences. It works with artists, curators, writers and specialists from other fields, locally, regionally, nationally and internationally, to develop professional expertise and exchange, and to create opportunities for audiences of all ages to experience groundbreaking cultural activity.
Outlandia, Glen Nevis, Scotland
Outlandia is an off-grid treehouse, imagined by artists Bruce Gilchrist and Jo Joelson, who work together as London Fieldworks. A flexible meeting space in the forest for creative collaboration and research, Outlandia is inspired by wildlife hides and bothies, forest outlaws and Japanese poetry platforms.
Based in the heart of London, Delfina Foundation is an independent, non-profit foundation dedicated to facilitating artistic exchange and developing creative practice through residencies, partnerships and public programming.
Listen: Interview with Aaron Cezar, Director of Delfina Foundation
Hauser & Wirth, Somerset
A pioneering world-class gallery and multi-purpose arts center which acts as a destination for experiencing art, architecture, and the remarkable Somerset landscape through new and innovative exhibitions.
Qualification(s) required for entry to the MA
BA (Honours) Degree: A first degree in an arts or humanities subject. All applicants will be required to present a portfolio of work. Where the first degree is not arts or humanities-related, a portfolio of work in support of the application or experience that is equivalent.
Other non-standard awards or experience: A willingness to engage with the field of Arts & Place. Candidates will be considered with prior credited learning and prior experiences subject to interview.*
Interview requirements: All applicants are required to attend an interview, either at the School or online.
*For further information please contact our admissions team at email@example.com.
For full details on our fees, click here. Please note that for this course, the following also applies:
- As this programme contains residencies, you will also need to budget for travel, accommodation and material costs.
- The first six weeks module is delivered at Dartington and is a full timetable over at least four days of each week. You will need to either live on site with full board, participating in the learning community @ £299 per week or live nearby and travel in and out.
- The programme also includes three x 10 day fieldtrips where you will need to pay for your accommodation and travel.
- Depending on the type of work you develop, you are also likely to have some material costs during the course and for your final project. Please bear this in mind when considering the total costs you need to budget for.
There is also a fully funded Scholarship to be awarded to a candidate with refugee status or who has an application for asylum in the UK to study on MA Arts and Place for 2022/23. Find out more and apply here >
Dr Jo Joelson is Programme Lead for MA Arts and Place. She is a London based artist, researcher and writer.
Jo has been awarded International Fellowships and residencies to undertake research and fieldwork, including at the Space Sciences Laboratory, University of California; Headlands Center for the Arts, USA; Space Plasma Physics Group, Dept. Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester; Skaftfell Center for Visual Arts, Iceland; Vatnasafn/Library of Water, Iceland; Living Art Museum, Iceland; Northeast Greenland National Park; and Reserva Ecológica De Guapiaçu, Brasil. Her collaborative projects, films, artworks and architectures have received awards, honours and special mentions from Ars Electronica, VIDA International Art and Artificial Life, The Arts Foundation, AJ Architecture Awards and London Short Film Festival.
Jo has a Master’s (Distinction) in curating art, design and new media and completed her AHRC-funded doctorate in 2020, receiving her PhD for Library of Light: a framework to explore light, material culture and social experience from the University of Sunderland, UK.
Jo has co-edited a number of publications including Null Object: Gustav Metzger thinks about nothing, published by Black Dog (2012); Remote Performances in Nature and Architecture, a project centred on London Fieldworks’ Outlandia project in the Scottish Highlands, published by Routledge (2015). Her recently authored, Library of Light: encounters with artists and designers, was published by Lund Humphries (2019) and examines the role light plays in the new frontiers of art, design and technology and its impact on our cultural history. Most recently Jo has collaborated with writer and thinker Timothy Morton on a future documentary Confronting our Erasure Through Art for BBC4. She also recently contributed the essay Violence Power, Surveillance: From the Blind Lantern to the Searchlight for “White Torture” to a bilingual publication (German/English) published by Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König to accompany Power! Light! a forthcoming exhibition at Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg (2021-22).
Tracey is a fiction and non-fiction writer and also works with text in the vicinity of art. She is an Associate Lecturer on our Poetics of Imagination programme.
Her recent fiction includes the future fiction, The Water Age (Meanda Books, 2018) and five historical novels set in medieval Europe. She was shortlisted for the Impress Prize for Fiction and is currently working on a biography of three medieval sisters, entitled Three Female Lords, which received an Authors Foundation grant. She was awarded a Literature Wales Writer’s Bursary and a Santander Research Award.
Tracey was Director of the Arts and Cultural Management programmes at Dartington College of Arts from 2002–2006. She was co-curator of the Edge Biennales in London, Newcastle and in Madrid European Capital of Culture. She was Combined Arts Officer at Arts Council Great Britain and Gallery Publications Officer at the Institute of Contemporary Arts. As an independent curator, she worked with a wide range of international artists including James Turrell, Nomeda & Gediminas Urbonas, Marina Abramovic, Cornelia Parker, Helen Chadwick and Isaac Julien. Her books on contemporary art include The Midden (Garret, 2018), Remote Performances in Nature and Architecture (Routledge, 2015) and The Artist’s Body (Phaidon, 2000). She has published numerous catalogue essays and journal articles on a wide range of contemporary artists including Christian Thompson, Hayley Newman and Marcus Coates.
Mohini is Associate Lecturer on the Arts and Place programme.
Since graduating from the Royal College of Art, Mohini has received funding and awards from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Autograph ABP, the Arts Council England, the British Council, the Australia Council for the Arts and Asialink. Her work has also recently been recognised by the Hundred Heroines-Women in Photography Award and a nomination for the Jarman Film Award (2021).
She was awarded an Art Council/National Lottery grant for her project ‘Paradise Lost’ which examines the complexities of colonial seafaring through the archaeology of shipwrecks (exhibited at MIRROR in Plymouth, 2021) and a commission from Autograph for the new moving image work ‘Belated’, which explores the recent global pandemic within a Devon market town- incorporating the work of Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore. Mohini was awarded the 2021-22 Arts Institute Film Commission, to make the film ‘Tall Tales and Wonder Rooms’ (2022), and has been working with the Box Museum moving image collections and the SHIPS Project archaeology team in Plymouth. These recent projects explore links between the local and the global, examining untold tales of cultural encounter and our relationship with nature, within local mythology and seafaring narratives of the South West.
For Mohini, the combination of photography, found and archival material, moving image, sound and other installation media enables the visual expression of personal experience and a ‘mapping’ of alternate narratives within the complex conditions of globalisation. Her research encompasses both thinking and making around photography through a range of curatorial, writing and publishing projects. Her recent article Plane Views was published by Taylor and Francis in the Journal of Photography & Culture, while artist publications include the photobook ‘album pacifica’, published by Autograph and ‘Day of Shadows’ (published by the Artist Book Collective/ Amsterdam Fund for the Arts.
Her work is held in international collections including the Arts Council Collection UK and included in major survey publications such as Phaidon’s Art and Photography by David Campany and Bloomsbury’s Photography in India in Light Years and Digital Times, by Aileen Blaney & Chinar Shah.
Adam Chodzko is an artist based in Whitstable, Kent. He is a Visiting Lecturer on the Arts and Place programme.Read More
Recent exhibitions include; Sunken Ecologies (2021), Estuary (2021), A Very Special Place: Ikon in the 1990s, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham (2021); The Botanical Mind, Camden Art Centre, (2020); Towner International, Towner Eastbourne, (2020); Being Human, Wellcome Collection (2019-’30); Televistas, More Than Ponies (2020); Die Sonne does not shine like Słońce, Trafostacja Sztuki, Szczecin, Poland (2020). International solo exhibitions include: Tate Britain (2013); Tate St Ives, (2009); Raven Row, London (2013); Museo d’Arte Moderna, Bologna (2009); The Benaki Museum, Athens (2013). Past group exhibitions include: Athens Biennale, Istanbul Biennale, Venice Biennale; Royal Academy, London; Deste Foundation, Athens; PS1, NY; Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, Kunstmuseum Luzern. Commissions include: Creative Time, NY, The Contemporary Art Society, Wellcome Trust, Frieze Art Fair, and Hayward Gallery. Awards include: the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Foundation for Contemporary Art – New York, AHRC Research Fellowship, DACS Art360.
Since 1996 Adam has been a visiting lecturer on many BA and MA Fine Art courses; Central Saint Martins, Chelsea College of Arts, Slade School of Fine Art, Goldsmiths, Open School East: Margate, UCA, Sheffield Hallam University, Liverpool John Moores University and Ruskin College, Oxford, etc. US: Carnegie Mellon University, Rutgers University. Canada: Banff Centre. 2014-2018: Senior Lecturer in Fine Art, University of Kent. He’s been the External Examiner for: BA Fine Art at Slade, UCL and MFA Fine Art, National College of Art & Design, Dublin. Adam is on the Faculty of Fine Art, British School at Rome, British Academy. Residencies include Grizedale Arts, Cumbria; British School at Rome; Cove Park, Glasgow; Beppu, Japan; Banff Centre, Canada.
past lecturers for this course have included:
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Angela Burdon and Sheyda A. Khaymaz
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Lisa Le Feuvre
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Dave Macleod and Claire Macleod
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live chats & open days
latest news & blogs
In January 2023, students took over Dartington’s Gallery space, with all works a response to the complexities of ‘the field’ as a place of practice. You can explore the exhibition online here >
Recent Dartington graduate exhibits new work exploring how songs are carried across borders and continents and yet remain firmly rooted in the places they were first sung.
Students on MA Arts & Place spend two weeks at the high-end gallery developing work responding to the theme of ‘Remember Nature’, a project inspired by artist and activist Gustav Metzger.
Top image credit: Tania Candiani, Landscape Sound Amplifier. Exoplanet Lot, Saint Cirq Lapopie. Organised by Maison des Arts Georges et Claude Pompidou. Photograph by Yohann Gozard