UCAS Applications Update:
Undergraduate 18+

FdA Fine Art

*This programme is subject to validation
We are no longer accepting applications to start this course in September 2022. Applications for a 2023 start open in September.
OverviewModulesGalleryApplication InformationAuditionsFees & Funding

For the future you

This programme offers you the chance to engage with contemporary fine art practice and its relationship to the broader cultural and creative industries. You will have the opportunity to experiment and specialise in a range of different media, including print making, painting, drawing, sculpture, lens-based processes, installation, 3D processes (including ceramics), performance, photography, digital processes, film and sound. The course is taught at both Bristol School of Art and Stroud School of Art so prospective students have the choice of which location they will study at. The FdA in Fine Art can constitute towards the first two years of study for a BA (Hons) Fine Art degree, and many of our students elect to study this final year (at Bristol School of Art only) graduating with a BA (Hons) in Fine Art

About the programme

The programme is built around studio-based practice, taught workshops, independent study, seminars, contextual lectures, tutorials and visiting lecturer talks, and requires students to engage with research and written work, as well as designing and making. You will participate in organised visits to galleries, museums, workshops, artist studios and other cultural sites of local and national importance. Students have the opportunity to exhibit their work as part of the end of year degree show activities, as well as organising and exhibiting in an off-campus exhibition project during the second year of study.

Graduate Opportunities

Recent students have had work accepted at international exhibitions, have been accepted onto residencies abroad, have gone on to study at Masters level, and have initiated cultural projects in Bristol.

  • Artist
  • Museum/Gallery Work
  • Teaching/Education
  • Progression to BA (Hons) Top-Up, Level 6
A six foot male stands clapping in a gothic cathedral dressed in a graduation gown, the man has a happy smiling expression and is amongst his peers celebrating their graduation event.
Drawing as Investigation

This module will introduce you to the notion of drawing, in all its forms and possibilities, as a tool for the investigation of forms, phenomena, ideas and sensations. It is an introduction to the ethos of the Foundation Degree in Fine Art and the nature of drawing (in an expanded sense) as central to this. You will use two/three dimensional drawing processes to investigate various experiments. This is an opportunity for you to consider and engage in drawing both as a tool to aid the investigation of sources, the recording, development and progress of your ideas and as a set of processes or ways of producing works in its own right. We encourage you to define drawing as broadly as possible.  It can be a paper / pencil activity but it might be more helpful to consider it as a set of functions rather than specific media or processes. You'll produce a portfolio of drawings in a wide range of media.

Portfolio: 85%
Evaluative statement: 15% (500 words)
Preparation for Surface, 3D and 4D Projects

This module will allow you to undertake a range of project work firmly based around Fine Art practices and processes. You will meet different tutors who will introduce you to the various specialist workshops/studios and their facilities, as well as the ideas and approaches that are possible. You will make work for each of these areas, which will then find a home within your shared studio environment, each element becoming a part of your shared experience of the studio, to be worked in and lived with. You will also continue your own projects, feeding in ideas and processes that you have enjoyed from the workshops. The module will culminate in an Interim Show (or exhibition) that will showcase the things you have been working on in the first two modules. Staging the show will introduce you to the idea of collaborative exhibition making, and editing/selecting work for presentation. You will also reflect on what you are doing, researching and discovering throughout the module. You'll evaluate what you have learned from your research (practical work as well as wider artists re-search) and identify areas of Fine Art practice that you would like to explore further in future.

Portfolio: 80%
Evaluative statement: 20% (500 words)
Surface, 3D or 4D Projects

You will build on the creative thinking and practical skills gained in the previous module and be encouraged to acquire contextual and interpretive skills, which will provide an opportunity to refine and develop experimental approaches to your work.  During the module, you will work on a series of projects to explore two identified areas of Fine Art practice with a view to further development of specialist skills. You will develop personal and familiar strategies for originating and recording ideas and identifying relevant research methods. This period of study will allow for further development of your creative and technological skills and culminate in extended study around process specific project briefs.The module will include introductions to:  Surface (printmaking, painting, photography, etc.)  3D (sculpture, installation, plastic materials, etc.) 4D (performance, moving image, multi-media, etc.)  The examination of semiotics, language and meaning in the context of Fine Art practice Development of responses to project briefs using traditional and innovative methods

Portfolio of practical work: 80%
Evaluative and reflective blog: 20%
Contextual Studies: Art in Society

This module will involve you in a series of lectures and seminars that introduces you to a range of historical contexts of Fine Art practice. Why? So that you come to identify what has been done in the past, which enables you to create work that is relevant in the present, and the future. Taught sessions will focus on a wide range of themes of contemporary art practices, analysing the developments in art history that have influenced these current practices. Seminars will enable you to gain confidence in analysing a work of art and understanding how it relates to a specific context of creation and exhibition.You will maintain an individual blog of your ongoing and increasingly personalised researches into historical and contemporary Fine Art. This blog will complement the knowledge the student will gather during taught sessions. The blog will maintain reflective records of exhibitions visited, books, journal articles and discussions you might have had. Lectures and seminar topics will include: Postcolonialism, Marxism, Feminism, Semiotics, Iconography, Modernism, Postmodernism.

Presentation: 25%
Folder: 25% A blog or folder of ongoing research into art practice relevant to the lecture and seminar topics (1200 words or equivalent)
Essay: 50% A written assignment exploring the relationship between an artist and the society within which they function.
Drawing and Idea

This module underlines the centrality of drawing to the creative process. You'll  return to drawing, in its widest possible definition, as a starting point and as resolution alongside your other chosen areas of practice. Through negotiation with teaching staff, you'll design a series of programmes of study that will sustain you over several weeks. These will include drawing as a central component in the research, preparation and execution of ideas. The emphasis of this module will be on developing existing skills within drawing alongside your chosen areas of practice in Fine Art. You will be expected to extend your research and recording skills in order to realise innovative and experimental responses to a series of negotiated projects.

Portfolio of practical work: 80%
Evaluative and critically reflective blog: 20%
Idea into Form

This module encourages you to build upon research and ideas developed in FA5005. Visual research in the form of drawings and related works form the starting points for a final major project and a single work to be appropriate for exhibition. You'll write a proposal for a programme of study that will sustain you for several weeks. Your individual creative identity in terms of your ideas and choices of materials and processes will be clear. The aim is to allow students to prepare for either: exit from the course at level 5 to seek employment in the creative industries; or to plan progression to a Level 6 programme to top up the Foundation degree to a full Honours Degree in Fine Art or a related discipline.  You will devise and produce appropriate conclusions to your major project; this will include selection and development of a single 'work' for exhibition and to be developed as a conclusion to FA5007 and presentation to an audience.

Portfolio: 75%
Blog: 25% Project proposal (750 words) and final evaluative statement (750 words)
Professional Practice and Off-site Exhibition

This module will involve students in preparation and presentation of a group, off-site, exhibition and the production of a final major work. In addition students will prepare a digital, online, portfolio and a printed, professional standard, catalogue of their practical Fine Art output. They will explore possible venues, e.g. public, private, commercial, non-commercial, subsidised, non-subsidised, etc. They will explore funding opportunities; prepare their work and the venue; explore and utilise appropriate and relevant installation methods. Students will maintain an evaluative journal throughout in which they document their engagement with: curatorial issues, e.g. the exhibition's inception, conception, development, production, information and realisation. Students will be responsible for personal, financial and physical resources and for all publicity tools e.g. catalogues, press releases, etc. Students will produce a digital portfolio and a professional standard catalogue of their Fine Art practice to be published alongside the exhibition. This portfolio / catalogue will demonstrate a developing engagement with contemporary Fine Art professional practice.

Digital portfolio & printed catalogue: 25%
An evaluative & reflective journal / blog: 25% (1500 words)
Presentation: 50% [On a suitable work appropriate to the exhibition & rationale for its selection, method of exhibition and conceptual background. No more than 3000 words]
Contextual Studies: Art and Community

You'll engage with Communities of Practice and / or Art in the Wider Community through the preparation and execution of a small-scale, work-related, research project. You will get involved with an individual practitioner, in a community based art project, an art institution, gallery or community of artists with a view to reporting on its functions, processes, ethos, ethical positions, funding, etc.You will seek out and engage, either as a volunteer or through some other mechanism, with an example of individual practice, a community based art project, an art institution, gallery or community of artists. You'll use small-scale research methods such as participant observation, interviews, focus groups, etc., to illicit information and data. This data will then form the basis of a written report that locates their experience within a wider contextual landscape as outlined in the lectures and seminars.

A written report / assignment 50% (300 words)
A blog of research into art practice 25% (1500 words)

Application Information

To apply you must register and complete your application using the UCAS online system.
Entry Requirements
64 UCAS tariff points, GCSE Maths & English C/4. You will be required to attend an interview, where you will present a digital portfolio. Mature students over 21 will be required to demonstrate professional/creative experience and evidence of academic ability.
Contact admissions
Full-time Fee (Per Year)
Full-time Duration (Per Year)
2 Years
Part-Time Fee (Per Year)
Part-Time Duration (Per Year)
4 Years
Bristol School of Art, Queens Road or Stroud School of Art
Awarding/Validating University
University of Gloucestershire
UCAS Institution Code
S55 - SGS College Group
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