Art Studio MFA

Degrees Available
A studio art degree prepares you for the creative life you plan to live and opens the door to an inventive career full of exploration, critical thinking, and a practice based in hands-on making.

The MFA in Art Studio is an interdisciplinary degree that embraces broad forms of making and practice. 

Generous access to faculty and facilities empowers students to curate their graduate experience around the media and skills they need to be successful artists. In this three-year program, graduate students are presented with a robust curriculum that combines individual studio-based research with seminars focusing on theory. MFA candidates are provided with personal studio space and 24/7 access to our state-of-the-art facilities. An MFA is the terminal academic degree for studio artists and is the required faculty credential for most institutions of higher learning. While a BA or BFA in studio art is the typical preparatory degree for the MFA program, students with any four-year bachelor’s-level degree may apply; demonstrating quality creative work and significant potential for continued research is essential for any prospective graduate student.

Areas of specialization include:

  • Ceramics
  • Drawing
  • Performance
  • Photography
  • Sculpture / Metal Arts
  • Digital Media / New Media / Intermedia
  • Fiber
  • Installation
  • Painting
  • Printmaking / Printmedia

Application Deadline: January 6

Students enrolled in the M.F.A. program are encouraged either to explore interdisciplinary practices or to concentrate on a single medium as appropriate to their research goals.

The Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree in Art Studio is a three-year terminal degree. An MFA degree enables you to teach at the college level, pursue a commercial career, or work as a practicing artist. 



Applications to the graduate programs in Studio Art are made through the University of Kentucky Graduate School. To be considered for a Teaching Assistantship (TA) applicants should address their desire to teach in the cover letter. Please note that Teaching Assistantships are competitive and that admission into the MFA in Art Studio program does not mean that a TA will be awarded. 

To apply for funding please submit the following:

  • A completed application form for the Graduate School.   
  • One official transcript from all institutions previously attended.   
  • TOEFL scores and/or IELTS scores if an international student.   
  • Application fee.   
  • Portfolio: A single PDF portfolio of 20 recent artworks (required resolution: 8”x 10” or 10” x 8”, 90 DPI). Each slide in the portfolio needs to include the applicants name, title of artwork, medium, size (in inches or feet), and date for each submitted work as part of that document. If your files are too large, please resize them to the required resolution. If sending time-based materials (such as video), please include a link to your work on a website such as vimeo, personal site, or YouTube on the slide with a still image.   
  • Cover Letter/ Letter of Intent: A 1-2 page letter clearly stating your goals for graduate school, why you want to study at in the School of Art & Visual Studies, and why you would like to be considered for a teaching assistantship, fellowship, and/ or scholarship. If you would like to be considered for a teaching assistantship, please clearly explain your interest in teaching and how you would benefit from teaching mentorship and classroom experience.  
  • One Page Artist Statement explaining the conceptual and aesthetic ideas and influences behind your creative practice.  
  • A brief resumé/ CV with relevant artistic experience and exhibition record.  
  • Three letters of recommendation 

“I loved my time at SA/VS. One of the most valuable things for me was the smaller size of my cohort and the fact that we were not required to specialize or declare a focus. Because of this, I got to work closely with a number of faculty across disciplines and explore a variety of conceptual and technical approaches throughout the three years of my MFA. I felt like every studio was open to me, and faculty and other students were often excited to share their expertise when asked. Post-graduation, I realize how this experience shaped my studio practice, and also how it differs from the experiences of some of my friends and colleagues who attended larger programs.”

Marika Christofides, Art Studio MFA '22

Marika is a Teaching Assistant Professor of Studio Art at Oklahoma State University. As a printmaker and visual artist, she explores the Biosciences through a feminist lens. She collects illustrations from feminine-coded midcentury print ephemera—such as sewing packets, greeting cards, and recipe books—which she translates into digital collage and print-based works. Her work has recently been exhibited at Highpoint Center for Printmaking, the Morgan Conservatory, and the Cleveland Institute of Art, and she has attended residencies at Emmanuel College and In Cahoots.

Created 06/28/2021
Last Updated 02/07/2024