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Postgraduate taught

MA Curation: Art and Business - 2023 entry

Please note: The below is for 2023 entries. Click here for 2022 entries.
UCAS code None
Duration 1 year full time
Entry year 2023
Campus Streatham Campus
Discipline Creative Industries

Programme Director Professor Tom Trevor
Web: Enquire online
Phone: 0300 555 6060 (UK callers)
+44 (0)1392 723044 (EU/International callers)

Typical offer

View full entry requirements

2:1 Honours degree

Contextual offers


  • Expand your understanding of the social, cultural and economic issues that surround the international contemporary art world
  • Develop a range of subject specific, academic and transferable skills, including high order conceptual and visual literacy and communication skills for the arts sector and beyond
  • Gain access to expert guest tutors and lecturers, international art fairs, London Field trips and professional placements that will give your career an edge
  • Benefit from teaching in an international gallery space in term two in central London, in close proximity to the fine art sector
Apply for Sept 2023 entry

Apply online

View 2022 Entry

Request a prospectus

Fast track (current Exeter students)

Open days and visiting us


Programme Director: Professor Tom Trevor

Web: Enquire online

Phone: +44 (0)1392 72 72 72

Discover MA Curation: Art and Business at the University of Exeter.

Develop transferable skills, specialist knowledge and professional experience through interdisciplinary teaching

Focus on commercial and business management aspects of Creative Arts and Humanities

Industry placement options

Opportunities for study in the field

Entry requirements

Normally a minimum 2:1 Honours degree, or international equivalent, in a subject that includes some coverage of Art History, Business Studies, Drama, English, Cultural Studies and History.

Entry requirements for international students

English language requirements


Please visit our entry requirements section for equivalencies from your country and further information on English language requirements.

Studying MA Curation: Art and Business has enabled me to delve deeper into the theory of art and practicalities of curation. I enjoy the flexibility of the assignments as I can really focus on the concepts that interest me.

Art Writing has been one of my favourite modules as we were introduced to a range of experts who specialised in all styles of writing. Overall the MA has been an excellent opportunity to network within the art world and expand upon my own personal interests.

Read more from Olivia


MA Curation: Art and Business

Course content

The programme is divided into units of study called modules which are assigned a number of 'credits'. The credit rating of a module is proportional to the total workload, with 1 credit being nominally equivalent to 10 hours of work.

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.


2023/24 entry

UK fees per year:

£15,700 full-time

International fees per year:

£25,500 full-time


We invest heavily in scholarships for talented prospective Masters students and have over £2.5 million in scholarships available for students applying to study with us in 2023, including our Global Excellence Scholarships* and Green Futures Scholarships* for international fee paying students.

For information on how you can fund your postgraduate degree at the University of Exeter, please visit our dedicated funding page.

*Selected programmes only. Please see the Terms and Conditions for each scheme for further details.

Learning and teaching

Our lecturers are at the cutting edge of contemporary art research and curatorial practice, as well as art history and visual culture. Key members of staff specialise in contemporary art and curation, as well as the history of art and architecture, from the Renaissance to the present, the history, theory and practice of museums and collections, aspects of performance, installation, photography and video arts and visual culture from antiquity to the present day.

For Term 2 and our Art Writing module in 2022, the course was based at Camden Arts Centre, a celebrated contemporary art gallery in London, that offers a programme of exhibitions, events and artist residencies.


The MA Curation: Art and Business will be taught in Exeter (Term 1) and London (Term 2), giving you access to world-class resources.

The MA offers a unique combination of academic research-based modules and more practical, hands-on experience.

Distinctive aspects of the MA are:

  • A working relationship with a host institution in London for teaching in Term 2. This will be an internationally focused venue at the centre of the contemporary art world, and adjacent to galleries, studios and museums, with excellent transport links.
  • A three term MA programme, structured around four taught modules (delivered in terms 1 and 2), including a work placement, in addition to a final dissertation or curatorial project (in Term 3).
  • Subsidised field trips and opportunities for students to visit internationally significant collections and exhibitions throughout the course.
  • Extensive use of invited curators and museum/gallery professionals as guest speakers to contribute lectures to the taught modules as appropriate.


A partnership-based approach to support opportunities for work placements in prestigious museums and galleries (public or commercial). Planning for placements will focus on venues in the SW, London and abroad.

Student Exhibitions

In the third and final term, students have the option to either organise a curatorial project or write a research dissertation. In our inaugural year, the theme for the 2021 practice-based projects chosen by the MA students was ‘Antibodies: Art during the pandemic’.

Expand text

Tom Trevor is Director of the new MA Curation: Art and Business, within Art History and Visual Culture. He has twenty-five years’ experience as a curator and writer on contemporary art, including fourteen as Director of leading UK arts institutions. 

During this time he has curated more than 100 exhibitions, placing a particular emphasis upon experimental emerging practice and context-led projects. Since 2013, after eight years as Director of Arnolfini, in Bristol, he has focused on curating international biennials and large-scale visual arts projects, working in India, Korea, Denmark, Japan, UAE and the UK. Over the course of his career, he has produced, edited or contributed texts to over 40 publications, and lectured widely.

Read more from Professor Tom Trevor

Professor Tom Trevor

Programme Director

Josie Cockram, Lecturer in Contemporary Art and Curation, leads professional practice lectures, seminars and workshops. This strand of the course equips students with the practical production skills they need to make contemporary art happen, and to engage audiences across all our communities.

Josie is an artist, curator and producer. She is co-founder and co-curator of Aller Park Studios, a project founded in Devon in 2019 presenting artist film screenings, talks, workshops and performances. Aller Park Studios activity is ambitious, cooperative and informal - international and UK-based artists and performers visit for a contemporary art programme that engages with the experimental, cross-disciplinary traditions of the Dartington Trust. Previously Josie worked in galleries in London and in Plymouth. And she worked at CAST in Cornwall where she produced the Groundwork programme with Director Teresa Gleadowe. Groundwork was a three year project, bringing exceptional international art and artists to Cornwall and culminating in a five month season of exhibitions and events in 2018.

Read more from Josie Cockram

Josie Cockram

Lecturer in Contemporary Art and Curation

Guest lecturers

Drawing on expertise from the university’s Art History and Visual Culture team and across the world, lectures and seminars are framed around conversations with internationally recognised curators, artists, researchers and writers.

Follow us on Instagram @uofecuration to find out more about the MA Curation community


This programme will prepare you for graduate level employment by developing a number of the skills and attributes that are valued by employers.

  • engage imaginatively in the process of understanding and analysing contemporary international arts, and acquire the analytical tools necessary for an understanding of them.
  • promote a sense of the complex social, cultural, and institutional interactions between the production and reception of contemporary art and acquire the critical tools necessary to reflect upon these interactions.
  • engage critically with theoretical perspectives, major debates, and intellectual paradigms in the fields of art history, visual culture and arts criticism, and to encourage comparative reflection on the shared and contested knowledge produced therein.
  • understand the historical evolution of key concepts and procedures, in arts practice, art criticism and curatorship, and to consider the distinct and shared ways in which these concepts and procedures have developed within and beyond particular national traditions as well as different institutional contexts.
  • to develop a comparative understanding of the ways in which aesthetic judgements are constructed and aesthetic processes are experienced with regards to contemporary art.
  • acquire a sense of the distinctive social and cultural importance of the contemporary arts through an intellectually stimulating and satisfying experience of learning and studying.
  • develop the basis for further study in art history, gallery studies, or related disciplines.
  • develop a range of subject specific, academic and transferable skills, including high order conceptual and visual literacy and communication skills of value in graduate employment.


The MA will provide you with the opportunity to undertake a placement or research project with an organisation from the sector, enabling students to apply their knowledge in a business setting. A number of the University’s graduate attributes will be developed through study of the programme, including engaging as an active and committed global citizen.


The programme is international in its focus and encourages you to understand the social, cultural and economic issues that surround the contemporary art world. The skills you develop are therefore transferable into a broad range of employment contexts, both related to the arts sector and beyond. For example, the Art Writing module will equip you to: produce texts suitable for a variety of different platforms: including briefing documents, arts criticism, catalogue writing, exhibition texts, interpretation materials, podcasts and online content.

Potential career paths

  • Public galleries / museums
  • Curation
  • Commercial galleries and dealerships
  • Arts Investment and Wealth Management
  • Arts and Culture Policy
  • Heritage Management
  • Academia
  • Culture Management: Government Departments / Advisory Boards
  • Marketing, PR and Communications

Read more