Integrated with the studio practice and running progressively throughout the four years of the undergraduate BA Fine Art degree is a unique professional development programme – LifeWorkArt. Run in collaboration with many local and national arts organisations and galleries such as the Baltic, Vane Gallery, the NewBridge Project, Allenheads Contemporary Arts and Newcastle City Council, this programme gives students vital experience of a broad range of professional arts-based practices and potential career paths.
Skills are developed through live projects, such as: exhibitions, placements, public art, collaborations, education and community projects, art therapy and residencies. Students regularly arrange exhibitions and events within the department and at external venues – in 2016 there were 46 student exhibitions outside the university. This begins in Stage 1 with a major external exhibition by all first years to coincide with the Late Shows in May.
Students initiate projects and collaborate with external partners. Some current collaborations include placements with Newcastle City artists residency programme, residencies with the Welcome Trust Mitochondrial research project in the Medical School, art therapy workshops with the North East Trust for Aphasia and an exhibition exchange with students at Liverpool John Moores University.
Throughout your studies, you will develop a good range of subject-specific, technical and transferable skills. These include critical thinking and people skills, creative problem-solving skills, presentation and research skills and workplace skills. Many employers seek graduates who are lateral thinkers and creative problem-solvers.
Some of our graduates go into jobs in the arts field such as running art galleries or being arts advisers to local councils, while some graduates find work in arts associations or as teachers and arts specialists in the community. Other graduates find work in areas unrelated to art and design, in fields such as finance, journalism and marketing. Some graduates establish their own businesses and organisations, while others continue as independent practicing artists. Many have remained in the North East to take up opportunities in our thriving visual arts scene.
Newcastle University has consistently ranked as one of the best universities for graduate employment in the UK, with 96% of our 2017 UK-domiciled UG/PG graduates progressed to employment or further study within six months of graduating.
Many of our graduates also continue their fine art education at Master's level - for instance at the Royal College of Art, Glasgow, Chelsea, Goldsmiths', and the Slade School of Art. Some graduates continue on to PhD research or go on to pursue other visual arts-related postgraduate study. This can include areas such as art history, digital media, curating, museum studies, three-dimensional design and theatre design.