M.A. On Campus

Art and Culture - Contemporary Art History

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

12 months
16630 EUR/year
2168 EUR/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The Art and Culture - Contemporary Art History MA programme at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam focuses on visual, process-based, and digital art since. Far from being restricted to the classical art forms of painting, sculpture, and graphics,today’s art includes installation art and site-specific projects, digital or new media art, performative and activist projects and artistic research. 


The Art and Culture - Contemporary Art History MA programme at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam focuses on the visual, process-based, and digital art since the 1960s. This specialization trains you as an art historian who is equipped to tackle this complex but fascinating field. After completing this programme, you will have a solid knowledge of today’s visual, process-based, and digital art. You will also be equipped with skills to do research, present, and write about today's art, enabling you to pursue a career in the cultural sector (museums, festivals, art galleries, archives), as art critic, or freelance cultural entrepreneur.

Today’s art includes installation art and site-specific projects, digital or new media art (interactive installations, locative media works, software art, networked art, electronic art and video art), performative and activist projects and artistic research.

What unites these art forms is that they directly address the complexity of today’s society, within which information technologies and globalization play an ever-increasing role, leading to networked forms of artistic practice that transgress national and cultural borders. At the same time, artists are very aware of the heritage they build upon, deconstruct, commenting on, or appropriating art history, leading to various attempts to describe contemporary art with terms such as post-modern, post-conceptual, post-medium, and more recently even post-internet and post-digital – and post-contemporary.

Study Programme

  • You will kick off your first semester by self-critically questioning your role as an art historian with a specific interest in contemporary art by following a class on ‘Methods and Theories of Art History’ in the first period. 
  • Parallel to this, you will follow a research seminar dedicated to a specific topic within contemporary art, in order to immediately get started in developing your knowledge of the field and to improve your research and writing skills. 
  • While this class continues in the second period, the second period will also allow you to delve into the depth of digital and process-based art while following a class specifically dedicated to new media art.

Promotion alumni sessions Master’s day

During the Master’s day, you can also meet our (international) alumni during several workshops. In these sessions they will tell you more about career opportunities after finishing your Master’s degree.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • Methods and Theories of Art History
  • Seminar Contemporary Art
  • Trending Topics Arts and Culture
  • Media Art History: The Digital Divide
  • Art Criticism
  • Study Trip

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 12 months

Start dates & application deadlines




On Campus

Academic requirements

We are not aware of any academic requirements for this programme.

Other requirements

General requirements

  • An academic Bachelor's degree (WO) in art history, MKDA, or an equivalent degree. If you have an academic Bachelor’s degree in the Humanities (history, media studies, philosophy, cultural studies), you must have completed a minimum of 60 ECTS in art history/theory. You must also submit a complete application for review by the Admissions Board.
  • Copy of your valid passport or ID (ID only for EU residents)
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Motivation Letter
  • Transcript of records
  • Thesis (or another sample of academic writing)
  • A description of the relevant courses you have taken during your previous higher education and a list of all the main literature.

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    16630 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 16630 EUR per year during 12 months.
  • EU/EEA

    2168 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 2168 EUR per year during 12 months.

Living costs for Amsterdam

1000 - 1500 EUR /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

Fresh content

Updated in the last 3 months

Check the official programme website for potential updates.

Our partners

Art and Culture - Contemporary Art History
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam


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