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Arts and Culture: Contemporary Art in a Global Perspective

The specialisation “Contemporary Art in a Global Perspective” is part of in the Master Arts and Culture

You will be involved with the question of what challenges are offered in the present day by art history. You will gain insights into this by studying the developments in art in the broad context of visual culture, from social and political developments, developments in natural sciences and globalisation. Your insights will be directed by new perspectives that will teach you to understand the multiplicity/versatility of art. In this specialisation you will become familiar with all these subjects and you will research the wealth of modern and contemporary art and the place occupied by art as a medium in the world of today. During excursions you will have the opportunity to experience the works of art personally and test your research.

Key themes in this specialisation include:

  • Art in a global perspective

  • Art in relation to science

  • Photography as a medium

  • Art theory and aesthetics

The structure of the programme is the following:

  • Practices and Debates (5 EC)

  • Two Research Seminars (20 EC) from the specialisation ‘Art of the Contemporary World and World Art Studies’

  • Free Component (10 EC)

  • Thesis Seminar (5 EC)

  • Thesis (20 EC)


Course EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Obligatory courses

Practices and Debates in Art History (Master) 5
Thesis Seminar Arts and Culture 5
Free Component 10
MA Thesis Arts and Culture 20

Choose two of the following Research Seminars

The Epistemological Force of Art 10
Arts and Digital Culture 10
Interculturality 2: The Global Imagination 10
Art & Earth: Taking an Ecological view on Contemporary Art Worldwide 10
Art and Life Sciences 10

Free Component (10 EC)

You can choose any course offered within the MA Arts and Culture, a course on an Arts and Culture subject taught in another MA or an approved Internship. If you choose to take a course on an Arts and Culture subject taught in another MA, you need permission of the Board of Examiners. Suggestions

The Visual and Material Culture of Exchange in Asia and Europe, 1500-1800 10
A Century of Modern Dutch Sculpture in an International Perspective 10
Internship Arts and Culture 10

More info

Course objectives

  • to enable students to acquire academic knowledge, understanding and skills, and train them in the use of scientific methods in the field of Arts and Culture in general, and in particular with regard to the chosen specialisation;

  • to enable students to develop the following academic and professional skills:

  • independent academic reasoning and conduct,

  • the ability to analyse complex problems,

  • academic reporting;

  • to prepare students for an academic career and further education;

  • to prepare students for a career outside academia.


The structure of the programme is the following:

  • Practices and Debates (5 credits);

  • Two Research Seminars from the chosen specialisation in the master’s programme in Arts and Culture (20 credits);

  • Free Component (10 credits);

  • Thesis Seminar (5 credits);

  • Thesis (20 credits).

Full-time and part-time

The programme consists of 60 EC, to be completed in one year. Part-time students complete the programme in 1,5 years, they will have a course load of 20 EC per semester. Courses are scheduled during office hours.

Requirements for graduation:

Requirements for graduation are:

  • Successful completion of courses, following the structure of the programme (40 EC)

  • Successful completion of MA Thesis (20 EC)

Students need to complete at least 45 EC within their field of specialization:

  • 2 Research seminars in field of specialisation (20 EC);

  • Thesis seminar (5 EC);

  • Thesis (20 EC).


The specialisations are:

  • Art, Architecture and Interior before 1800

  • Museums and Collections

  • Contemporary Art in a Global Perspective