MFA in Fine Arts

Advanced students explore their art practices in the open, inclusive, and interdisciplinary MFA Fine Arts program at Otis College.

The MFA Fine Arts program at Otis College welcomes advanced artists who are engaged and committed to exploring an art practice in its various forms, traditions, and contexts. Setting aside rigid divisions and subdivisions, students are free to pursue a medium-specific practice—or not. As an open, inclusive, and interdisciplinary program, we value critical dialogue and lifelong learning within our close-knit community.

Home to two MFA programs and eight BFA programs, including a Fine Arts BFA, our Los Angeles campus provides an interdisciplinary environment where artists of different backgrounds, ages, experiences, and approaches to creative practice can flourish together. The many minors, courses, events, studios, labs, galleries, and social spaces create room for students to develop as artists and as engaged participants in society.

Graduate Fine Arts at Otis

The MFA program promotes experimentation, the development of individual studio practice, interdisciplinary critical dialogue, and collaborative engagement within our close-knit community. Our weekly Visiting Artist Lecture program, Mandy and Cliff Einstein Lecture Series, and Critic-in-Residence program enhance learning through ongoing dialogue with distinguished artists, curators, and thinkers.

Student artwork
LIGHT AS A FEATHER/ HEAVY AS LEAD, (2021), installation shot, Sharon Louise Barnes (’21 MFA Fine Arts)

What You’ll Learn

Artists in our program are simultaneously supported and challenged. Our MFA Fine Arts curriculum balances group critiques, rigorous academic coursework, and studio visits with faculty. These individual meetings foster the development of sustained interdisciplinary practices. Our MFA elective courses offer the exploration and the development of skills in a variety of media and methods and engage with the many art institutions in greater Los Angeles. 

In critique, students acquire a critical understanding of their work and how to locate it within critical cultural debates through generous group conversations. Weekly individual studio meetings with faculty offer one-on-one conversations on work in progress, ideas, readings, or plans. Critical inquiry into various histories, methodologies, and frames of thought structures our Theory and Art History seminars. A weekly Visiting Artist Lecture Series brings distinguished artists, curators, and thinkers into close dialogue with students. Studies culminate in a written thesis and final MFA exhibition.

MFA student artwork
View of artist studio of Chloe Jeangmyo Kim (’19 MFA Fine Arts)
MFA student artwork
untitled (10 PTS, 10 REB, 10 AST), (2021), Joseph Louis Sherman Jr. (MFA Fine Arts ’23)
Nefertiti Jenkins
Nefertiti Jenkins (’20 MFA Fine Arts) in studio.

Flourish at Otis College

Student Exhibitions

Student Exhibitions

Between project spaces, annual open studios, the mid-residency show, and the final thesis shows in the Bolsky Gallery, MFA Fine Arts students have ample exhibition opportunities over the course of the two-year program. The MFA Open Studios event occurs during the campus-wide O-Launch weekend exhibition, showcasing the culmination of the students’ study and studio work.

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24/7 MFA Studios

Our individual MFA studios with 24/7 access (except during holiday college closures) are located in the Galef Fine Arts Center in the heart of campus. In these dedicated spaces, students can create ambitious work and experiment in a broad range of media. 

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Otis Labs and Shops

Our campus offers students full access to large painting, sculpture, and lighting studios; state-of-the-art, professionally staffed wood, metal, and model shops; photography, video, film, printmaking, and ceramics labs; and the Millard Sheets Library.

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Visiting Lecture Series

The Visiting Artist Lecture Series brings distinguished artists, curators, and thinkers into close dialogue with students. Recent speakers include: Audrey Chan, Miles Coolidge, Beatriz Cortez, Nicole Eisenman, Anne Ellegood, Darby English, Denise Ferreira da Silva, Karen Finley, Charles Gaines, Malik Gaines, Katie Grinnan, Ann Hamilton, Salomón Huerta, and more.

Fine Arts Faculty

MFA in Fine Arts faculty at Otis College are celebrated and distinguished artists whose work has been shown around the world.

Meg Cranston's Picture

Meg Cranston

Department Chair, Fine Arts

Department: Fine Arts, MFA Fine Arts, Painting, Photography, Sculpture/New Genres
Email: mcranston@otis.edu

Kathrin Burmeister’s Picture

Kathrin Burmester

Director MFA Fine Arts and Assistant Professor

Department: MFA Fine Arts
Email: kburmester@otis.edu

Kade L. Twist's Work

Kade L. Twist

Associate Professor

Department: MFA Fine Arts
Email: ktwist@otis.edu

 

Meet the Faculty

The Fine Arts Community

The Fine Arts community at Otis College is a diverse one that includes both the BFA and MFA programs. Both degrees provide an artistic learning environment where artists of different backgrounds, ages, experiences, and approaches to creative practice can flourish together. Our courses, events, studios, labs, galleries, and social spaces are welcoming places where everyone in our community can develop as artists and as engaged participants in society.

Explore the BFA in Fine Arts

 

Student artwork
Untitled,(2022), Ali Minette (MFA Fine Arts ’22)

Contact Us

Our MFA Fine Arts program is a small, intimate program. We welcome prospective students to visit our studios and sit in on our classes. Contact us to schedule a date and time.

Phone: 310-665-6820

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