The Critical and Curatorial Studies Program at the University of British Columbia aims to address the growing need for curators and critics who have theoretical knowledge and practical experience in analyzing institutions, preparing displays, and communicating about contemporary art.
Critical and Curatorial Studies is an emerging field of scholarship and training that looks directly at the roles and responsibilities of curators and critics as mediators between objects, institutions, experiences, individuals and groups. This involves investigating the fields of ethnography, aesthetics, historical frameworks, and cultural understanding with a focus on contemporary contextual issues and practical concerns for exhibition display and curatorial practice.
The program engages individuals in critical discussions of art and visual culture and equips them to develop and work creatively with new modes of exhibition in both traditional and innovative situations and with issues and ideas affecting contemporary art. An individually realized practicum curatorial project gives graduate students professional experience in the research, planning, and creation of a significant exhibition to give them local, national, and international exposure.
The Critical and Curatorial Studies Program, recognized as one of the best graduate curatorial studies program in the world, benefits from being embedded in the Department of Art History and Visual Arts, a global leader in arts education, research, facilities and production, and by having a relationship with the Museum of Anthropology.