Open day

Southwark Campus

This Master of Arts degree in Curating Art and Public Programmes trains emerging curators in an immersive one-year, full-time course that offers hands-on experience at an internationally renowned public contemporary art gallery.

Applications are now open for a September 2022 start.

Apply now

Register here for our Open Day at Whitechapel Gallery on 29 January.

The distinctive curriculum offers a one-of-a-kind, integrative experience in working in the field of contemporary art, developing exhibitions and multi-disciplinary and inclusive public programmes. Students are introduced to specialised aspects of curatorial practice through dedicated lectures and workshops delivered by forward-thinking professionals, including sessions such as Commissioning Contemporary Art, Writing about Contemporary Art, Navigating the Art World, Curating Archives, Networked Curating and The Museum and its Ethics.

The unique opportunity to critically assess established categories of curating in a real-life environment constitutes the practical ‘backbone’ of the programme. Students work alongside highly-experienced international staff across the Gallery over a period of 20 weeks in addition to their taught modules. Experiencing the inner-workings of a cultural organisation such as the Whitechapel Gallery allows students to apply the knowledge, understanding and skillset acquired through this course in the workplace. Candidates enter the professional field with practical knowledge and a strong global vision as they are connected with professional networks from the outset.

Our unique partnership

Whitechapel Gallery, distinguished for its pioneering exhibitions and public programmes for over a century, offers students the opportunity to meet and engage with a rich community of artists, critics and curators, who are regularly invited to exhibit and deliver guest lectures and workshops in the Gallery’s yearly programme of events. Since its opening, Whitechapel Gallery has premiered world-class artists from modern masters such as Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko and Frida Kahlo and recently featured contemporaries such as Nalini Malani, Michael Rakowitz, Anna Maria Maiolino, Guerrilla Girls, Jacolby Satterwhite, Simon Fujiwara, Cao Fei, Cecile B. Evans, and Kapwani Kiwanga. In recent years, Whitechapel Gallery has worked in partnership with several organisations, foundations and art collections, such as NEON, La Caixa and V-A-C Foundation. Recent events included local and international speakers, curators, artists, theorists, composers, novelists and exceptional creative practitioners such as RoseLee Goldberg, Cecilia Farjardo-Hill, Lynne Cooke, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster and Enrique Vila-Matas, Brian Massumi, Tatiana Bilbao, Nicholas Serota, Philip Miller and William Kentridge, Naeem Mohaiemen among many others.

A touchstone for contemporary art internationally, Whitechapel Gallery plays a central role in London’s cultural landscape and is pivotal to the continued growth of the world’s most vibrant contemporary art scene. The collaboration with London South Bank University reflects Whitechapel Gallery’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. As one of the oldest and largest universities in London, London South Bank University has been providing vocationally-relevant, accredited and professionally recognised education since 1892 and has remained rooted in the local community delivering quality education to all.  Both institutions strive to reduce social inequality and have a joint commitment to recruiting staff and students from underrepresented groups.

Programme highlights:

  • Access to Whitechapel Gallery and its staff, the UK’s leading public gallery for contemporary art, renowned for its pioneering exhibitions since 1901.
  • First-hand exposure to the devising, researching and implementation of art exhibitions and public programmes.
  • Insight into a wide range of curatorial strands such as commissioning art and new media, curating archives, curating public and private collections, emerging artists’ and writers’ residencies and curating solo and group exhibitions.
  • Gain cultural awareness and critical understanding of all aspects of working in an art institution, including developing communications and fundraising strategies in a vibrant international location.
  • Attain the practical, intellectual and critical skills required for a competitive field, through hands-on, behind-the-scenes experience with Whitechapel Gallery’s rich networks of curators, artists, critics and academics.
  • Free access to the Whitechapel Gallery’s diverse programme of public talks and events.
  • Free access to numerous museums and galleries across the UK and abroad that are part of the Whitechapel Gallery’s network.

Full program details and fees, financial support and entry requirements are available on the Whitechapel Gallery and LSBU websites. Those who are interested are encouraged to submit an application as places in this course are limited.  Interviews will be conducted on a rolling basis.

Apply here.

As part of the Open Day on 29 January, at 10:00, 11:00, 12:00 you can join a tour of the Gallery spaces and a presentation from the course directors.

Please register in advance here.

For specific course enquiries, please contact the Program Administrator at Whitechapel Gallery: MAadministration@whitechapelgallery.org and for enrolment and other enquiries contact London South Bank University: course.enquiry@lsbu.ac.uk.