Our project-oriented study programme prepares students for the profession of contemporary artists. Through project work, students are in dialogue with the surrounding society, positioning themselves, criticising and presenting utopias using different artistic methods. Students are supported to actively participate and to use various forms of contemporary art in their work. Studying at Art School Maa is also suitable for those who have studied e.g. social sciences, psychology and philosophy previously.
In the face of new societal expectations on art and being an artist, Art School Maa strives to find fresh educational perspectives alongside traditional art education. Teaching consists of courses with versatile contents and approaches. Active and internationally experienced contemporary artists working in Finland are invited as teachers. The teaching structures on a continuous dialogue between theories and practical exercises. Lecturers of the open Thursday lectures that are part of the programme are experts from different areas of society.
(photo from Vilja Salmi's performance)
Content of the studies
The day program emphasises interdisciplinarity, artistic thinking and the study of new forms of contemporary art. In addition to visual arts methods, Maa teaches e.g. performance, sound art and critical theory. Instead of technical skills, the courses focus on the necessary skills and starting points for understanding the planning of artistic work, conceptual thinking and the framing of an artwork.
The day programme's teaching goals and educational starting points include:
1. Methods: The student gets acquainted with different artistic working methods and explores these. Methods might range from, for example, observation, drawing, painting, photography, video, performance, and methods of collective working.
2. Artworks and projects: The student acquires skills to create artworks and the ability to present their own practice and projects to others.
3. Context and field: The student gains knowledge and understanding of the context of contemporary art as well as of the broader cultural field.
4. Communication: The student has the skill to communicate and articulate ideas orally and in writing (seminar days, study groups and written presentations).
5. Practices of the profession: The student has practical knowledge of how to operate in the professional art field (taxation, grants, trade unions, showing one’s work, portfolio, creating websites, producing project art).
6. Own voice and own goals: It is central that the students themselves are involved in defining the goals of the teaching. Teaching supports the students' own voices and identifying what is central in their process, so that it answers to the students’ needs and not a set goal.
Form of study
Studying in the day programme is full-time and emphasises learning in a group. Studies consist of courses, lectures, workshops and projects. The studies also include mentored, independent periods. Teaching takes place mainly in Suomenlinna, at the school’s premises. The teaching languages are both Finnish and English. Note that the surrounding structures of the studies might operate in Finnish.
The first study year starts with an orientation period, followed by group discussions throughout the first year. The topics of the discussions are pedagogical emphases and assumptions that appear in artistic discourses, which we aim to define and dismantle together.
In the second year, students may decide together the content of one teaching period.
In the third year, each student chooses a personal supervisor for their graduation work. Third year students work together and organise the graduation exhibition as a group.
In the fourth year, working is guided and independent.
(photos above are from the exhibition by class 2022-2025 at Myymälä2, photos by Kamila Śladowska)
Student expenses and benefits
Maa is a private educational institution, one of its forms of funding are the tuition fees. As a student at the day program, you pay an annual tuition fee of € 1240 in the first year, € 1155 in the second and third years, and € 630 in the fourth year. The student card registration fee at OSKU service is € 16. The timing of the school year is usually 1.9.–31.5. From June to August, day program students can take summer studies (3 study weeks per month). Summer studies require an additional fee (€ 30 per mentoring hour). Each spring, Maa provides more information on the summer studies.
Students themselves buy their materials used in the courses. Part of the courses have a budget for the whole group provided by the school.
As a day program student, you fall under the scope of the state's study support. Students receive travel discounts (e.g. trains in Finland at VR, buses at Matkahuolto, Helsinki area public transport at HSL) as well as discounts from several artist supply stores and museums.
Official information about the day program
Art School Maa's contemporary arts day program is a three-year education which prepares for the profession of contemporary artist. The studies are full-time. 108 study weeks are required for graduation (36 study weeks per year). The graduation certificate is a diploma. After graduation, you can continue your studies at Maa with a voluntary, supervised fourth year (36 study weeks). Maa’s graduates can apply for membership at, for example, the Finnish Painters’ Union, the Association of Finnish Sculptors and the Association of Photographic Artists.
(📸: Sergio Urbina)
(📸: Haliz Yosef)
(📸: Helka Miettunen)
🕰 Fridays (27.10.–8.12.23)
(📸: Roza Boynik)
Teachers and mentors of the day programme, among others:
Hwang Kim Minjee
Laitinen Tuomas A.
Mertanen Minja Maria
Mustafa Mohammed Moe
Soria Hernández Diana
Vardhani Rajan Vishnu
1. year (2023–2026)
2. year (2022–2025)
Krasimir Jovanovic Hyvärinen
3. year (2021–2024)
4. year (2020–2023 + 2023–2024)