LUCA School of Arts is the only university college in Flanders exclusively dedicated to art and design. The art school combines the strengths and expertise of five renowned Flemish higher education institutions for art and design, spread across Brussels, Genk, Ghent and Leuven. Most of the programmes are taught in Dutch, but LUCA offers four full-English MA programmes on its campuses in Brussels and Leuven.
Master in Visual Arts
Campus Sint-Lukas Brussels (1 year, 60 ECTS)
specialization in Fine Art, Graphic Design (Media & Information Design or Graphic Storytelling) or Photography
All the specializations of the Visual Arts Master focus on giving students the possibility to create artistically authored images and texts across media. Artistic and curatorial research as well as storytelling and critical practice play an important role in the curriculum. The overall vision is oriented towards the formation of responsible protagonists of the next society and cutting edge investigators of new forms of visual and narrative expression. The teaching staff includes leading artists, designers and photographers from Belgium and abroad.
In the MA programme of Fine Arts in Brussels there are no restrictions in terms of medium or technique. All technical facilities on campus are at the disposal of students. The only imperative is the imperative of art. In practice this implies a focus on visual and conceptual finesse, productive self-questioning, and an imaginative approach to research. The student’s artistic intuition is not banned from the workfloor, but it may be critically dissected – out of respect rather than mistrust. The MFA group forms an international micro-community inside the school and, more broadly, inside the city; individual work is done in close contact with others. Student output will be framed and reframed by peers, directly and indirectly, using impulses generated in group discussions, theory seminars, guest lectures, workshops and excursions. The flourishing contemporary art scene in Brussels will act both as sounding board and medium of reception.
The Fine Arts MA programme at LUCA is aimed at critical self-reflection. Throughout the year students develop their master project in the context of theoretical and practice-related input. Through regular group evaluations and presentations, the students develop their practice to a professional level and learn to express themselves verbally to their peers, tutors and finally to an external jury.
Each student works with an individual tutor and a thesis promoter, assigned to him/her by the studio team at the beginning of the academic year. Students are expected to regularly consult them and to report about the progress of their work. The thesis is regarded as an integral part of the student’s MA project.
Next to the individual counselling, the students also attend a theory course called ‘Critical Practice’ and two elective Research Seminars. The Research Seminars form a ‘cross-over’ with the other MA departments at LUCA School of Arts.
The MA-programme also focuses on developments and activities within the contemporary art scene. Meetings are organized with artists, curators and other actors within the national and international art scene. Through these exchanges students learn to develop a critical and reflective attitude towards the field of contemporary art.
In the MA year Graphic Design you can choose between a specialisation in Media & Information Design or Graphic Storytelling.
As an MA student, you'll choose your own project and formulate your own relevant research questions. You'll demonstrate that you are able to work critically and innovatively within your chosen discipline or able to initiate multidisciplinary projects. You'll work in a productive and stimulating environment in which confrontation and communication with other students and tutors are the driving force for deepening your own work.
About the MA training
The open, questioning attitude you take as a designer/author towards available media ensures that the switch between techniques and disciplines becomes a matter of course. In other words: the autonomous designer/author sometimes makes video, sometimes conceptual work, then a book or a digital project. In addition, you'll write a thesis in which you reflect on your practice, methodology and the choices you make. Alongside design, you'll focus on an ongoing critical analysis of your work process through academic writing and presentations.
A critical design attitude
During the Critical Practices and interdisciplinary Critical Study you'll learn research methodologies and collect, analyse and synthesise relevant information to answer your research questions. This will bring you insight into the manner in which designers operate in different geographical, historical and cultural contexts and will give you the necessary intellectual capacity to grow into the next generation of leading designers, authors and artists.
In the MA year Photography, you'll take one step further in the development of your artistic identity. Throughout the year you'll work on a MA project, guided by two mentors who will help you to broaden and enrich your horizons. You'll not only realise an artistic project but also write a thesis in which you reflect on your artistic practice.
You, your Master thesis and photography
Alongside your artistic research, you'll intensively follow theoretical seminars, visit exhibitions and take part in lectures and workshops. Through portfolio viewings with nationally and internationally recognised artists, art critics and curators you'll discover new perspectives. In preparation for the master exhibition – which you organise together with fellow students off-campus – you'llshow your work to a wider public in an intermediate exhibition at the Recyclart art centre in Brussels.
Your MA thesis represents an important step in your artistic quest and in the development of your visual language. It is the starting capital with which you'll launch yourself on the path of contemporary (art) reality.
Curiosity, independent initiative and a passion for experimentation drive your artistic inquiry. You'll discover new strategies and unique methods. By openly communicating about evolutions and doubts during your work process, you'll bring your projects to a successful conclusion.
In Brussels, in the middle of the world
Students of the MA Photography come from all corners of the globe. In the dynamic context of Brussels, this diversity creates new avenues of thought and leads to a challenging artistic process. Surrounded by students from Belgium and abroad you'll be confronted by other realities that shift your boundaries. The international character of the master is also felt during the final master exhibition when an external and partly international jury will judge your work.
Master in Audiovisual Arts in Brussels
Campus Sint-Lukas Brussels (1 year, 60 ECTS)
specialization in Film or Animation Film
During the MA year you'll work on your own film project. You'll receive essential input via workshops, seminars and visits by Belgian and foreign filmmakers and audiovisual artists, plus continuous feedback from your individual mentor and other experts.
For your MA degree, you formulate your own final project and develop it through to completion. In this way, you prove that you are ready to be a critical and innovative animation filmmaker. Our students often participate in the Animated Film Festival in Annecy, France. This festival is the most famous of its kind in the world and brings together a wide variety of players from the industry. It is therefore an important networking opportunity for our master students.
Your MA project is central to the programme. You choose a topic, a research question and an objective. Under personal guidance you not only realise an artistic project, but also write a thesis in which you reflect upon your practice, methodology and ideas. The MA atelier provides a platform for discussing your work during one-to-one meetings with your tutors and in group discussions with and presentations to fellow students. Moreover, through guest lectures, study trips and portfolio viewings you'll come in contact with experts in the various aspects of your specialisation. In this way you raise your practice to a professional artistic standard. Meanwhile, you'll continue to feed your theoretical knowledge. Via intensive, small-scale seminars and public lectures you'll be exposed to contemporary critical thinking about film and audiovisual culture and learn how to link theory with practice. You'll graduate with a single screen work, which you'll present to an external and often international jury.
In preparation for your MA project you'll follow a three-day MA Session during which special attention is paid to the (un)truthful aspect of storytelling. In this Critical Practice you'll reflect on the extent to which a balance can be achieved between truth and lies. A second Critical Practice revolves around the link between 'mimesis' for the actor and 'kinetics' for the animator. During workshops you'll explore how these aspects can enrich your own MA project.
The MA Film programme puts great emphasis on the interaction between the school’s input and the student’s contribution. It builds on skills gathered in a Film or Audiovisual Arts BA Programme and offers no specific training anymore in terms of acting directing, lighting, editing, script writing and so forth.
Within the framework of author cinema and Art Film, it offers instead a continuous programme of mandatory activities that includes workshops, seminars, lectures, presentations by visiting filmmakers and visual artists, group presentations, group discussions, film screenings and excursions to exhibitions that offer a wide range of ideas and positions from the contemporary field of cinema culture and audiovisual arts. Students contribute their own knowledge, sensitivities, skills, aspirations, motivation and commitment. In regular peer to peer meetings, they report and communicate to each other on the progress of their MA project. By using this input and through ongoing dialogue with tutors, lecturers and fellow students, they develop a critical vocabulary and learn to formulate adequate questions and responses as well as to reach solutions independently, culminating in the showing of a personal and creative finished audiovisual work. This single-screen film work should demonstrate a personal signature as well as the mastering of directing skills.
The programme is designed to take a closer look at both the possibilities and difficulties that arise when students/future film makers develop creative work. It does not discriminate between narrative or documentary or experimental cinema practices. On the contrary, it helps students position themselves in the film practice(s) of their choice and achieve their artistic intentions by understanding the achievements of others.It lets students understand the strategies and tactics as well as knowledges and skills involved in the production of audiovisual art work. Individual practice is at its very center: a continuous and independent working pattern that seeks for a dialogue with similar as well as different practices. During this process the students can rely on an ongoing dialogue about the work’s content and form as well as about its practical and technical aspects in individual tutorials.
Erasmus Mundus Master in Documentary Film Directing
Campus Sint-Lukas Brussels (2 years, 120 ECTS)
Documentary Film Directing, aka Doc Nomads is an international two-year master degree in documentary filmmaking. Students come from all over the world to study successively at Lusófona University in Lisbon, the SZFE in Budapest and the LUCA Sint-Lukas campus in Brussels. DocNomads was the first film course in the world supported by Erasmus Mundus. Students can apply for travel and accommodation grants.
In each edition, about twenty-four students from all around the world follow a mobility track from Lisbon to Brussels, via Budapest. In doing so, students are immersed within different cultural environments, learning how to make use of their abilities outside their usual social contexts.
Taught entirely in English and taking a practical approach, Doc Nomads’ unique curriculum and supportive faculty aims at expanding students' skills and creativity, while providing an integrated training that combines a focus on the arts with contemporary practices in film production.
Master in Music
Campus Lemmens (2 year, 120 ECTS)
The Music MA degree is a broad, academic training programme with plenty of practical opportunities to help students discover where they want to excel. In the MA programmes, students can choose between specialisations in Instrument/Voice, Composition, Conducting, Music Teaching, Music Therapy, and Jazz.This extremely wide range of specialisations is offered in flexible paths, allowing students to easily change track even during the bachelor programme.
Master classes and symposia
The Lemmens campus organises annual master classes, symposia and seminars. This enables you to meet and work with external music experts. A host of famous musicians from Belgium and abroad have inspired and enriched our students over the years.
An intense practical experience via our ensembles, choirs and orchestras
Music practice is central to your life on campus. You will not only make music during tutorials and self-study, but we also stimulate you to participate as much as possible in performances by our ensembles, choirs and orchestras.
Advanced Master in Music
Campus Lemmens Leuven (2 year, 120 ECTS)
specialization: Soloist, Chamber Music or Contemporary Music
Do you have an MA degree in music? Do you wish to improve your artistic level as a performer? Are you looking for advanced music training enhanced by artistic research? LUCA-Campus Lemmens organises a two-year long course of study. During this programme, you can prepare your entrance to the professional music world: learn repertoire useful for competitions or auditions, give two recitals during regular concert seasons, and deepen your understanding of musical interpretation through artistic research.
You can choose among three specialisations:
- Chamber Music (for already formed ensembles)
- Contemporary Music
A two year programma
Each student or chamber music ensemble receives 1,5 h lesson/week by the chosen teacher, a minimum of 2 masterclasses with renowned musicians and guidance in designing and developing a research project relevant to your own artistic practice. Our programme guarantees each student or ensemble one recital during a regular concert season, a demo recording and support for finding a second recital within a regular concert season.
Artistic research tutoringThe research component of this MA programme is strongly connected to your artistic practice. We do not intend to make a performer-musicologist out of you but, rather, an artist whose practice is grounded in convincing artistic research. In order to achieve this goal, you will be assisted by a research tutor. The research tutor will consider your proficiency, artistic goals and interests in order to design a research programme meeting your needs. The research tutors are artists with experience in artistic research. In certain cases, your instrumental mentor may also be your research tutor.
RE:ANIMA is an International two-year master program in Animation Film, as a colloboration between LUCA campus C-mine Genk (Belgium), Aalto University (Finland) and Lusófona University (Portugal). RE:ANIMA explores all fields of animation, from fiction narrative to documentary and experimental uses of animation in expanded fields.
The program has an original mobility scheme that takes the students on an educational and creative journey from Belgium, where they will explore the foundations of narrative animation filmmaking, to Finland, where they will strengthen their technical and artistic animation skills and experiment with the craft, to Portugal, where they will use the tools of animation to depict and reflect upon reality, using the processes of animation as a form of documenting the world and act upon it.
Throughout the four semesters the students will acquire differentiated competences, explore diverse methods and approaches, while at the same time working on their graduation animation projects. These projects can take the form of fiction, documentary or experimental animation of a various nature that combine techniques and multidisciplinary approaches.