Iceland Academy of the Arts

Introduction

About the Academy

The Iceland Academy of the Arts is a self-governing institution providing higher education in fine arts, theatre, dance , music, design, architecture and art education.

Role and Objectives

The role of the Iceland Academy of the Arts is to encourage progressive thinking in the arts and to stimulate innovation and development in different fields. The Academy offers education in the arts at the university level and conveys both knowledge and professionalism in the arts to Icelandic society. It operates in a global environment and measures itself against academies that excel in arts education in neighbouring countries.

Three main values guide the focus and direction of the Academy in all of its work:

  • Curiosity
  • Understanding
  • Courage

Curiosity prompts us to ask questions and search for new approaches, solutions and answers. We dissect those answers and strive to understand what is foreign to us. Through understanding and training we develop the talents and skills we require. In that way we strengthen our courage to follow through on our convictions and our artistic vision.

Cooperation

The Iceland Academy of the Arts places emphasis on enhancing cooperation with other higher education institutions in the country and various other institutions and enterprises. Its partners include: The University of Iceland, Reykjavík University, the Agricultural University of Iceland, Bifröst University, the Reykjavík Art Museum, the National Gallery of Iceland, the Living Art Museum, the Ísafjördur Music School, the Skaftfell Cultural Centre, the Iceland Symphony Orchestra, the Icelandic Opera, the Salur Music Hall, Caput, the Reykjavík City Theatre, the National Theatre, the Akureyri Theatre, the Iceland Dance Company, the Reykjavík Arts Festival and the State Broadcasting Service.

The Iceland Academy of the Arts is an active participant in international cooperation. The Academy has made bilateral agreements with about 120 higher education institutions in Europe through the Erasmus programme. Within NordPlus, the Academy cooperates with about 90 art academies in the Nordics and the Baltics. Preparations are being made for cooperation with art academies in Asia, including China, Japan and Thailand. Students can therefore complete a part of their studies in foreign places. In general, the student exchange lasts one semester. A large number of foreign exchange students also studies at the Iceland Academy of the Arts, and numerous foreign guest teachers teach at the Academy for longer or shorter periods of time.

Education

The Academy offers full time education at university level, emphasizing superior instruction and training for students who have passed the strictest admission requirements. Four department faculties offer degree programmes at the Bachelor of Arts level, through different branches of study. Three departments offer a Master programme and in addition the Music Department offers a Diploma programme.

Educational Progress

Education at the Academy is measured in ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) credits. The workload per credit varies between subject areas but, in general, the student can expect to devote a minimum of 25-30 hours of work per credit.

Bachelor programmes

A minimum of 180 ECTS are required for a BA or B.Mus. Degree. The Academy’s curriculum is organised to allow for a maximum of 72 ECTS in one academic year and no more than a total of 210 ECTS for the student’s whole period of study.

A full-time student must complete a minimum of 48 ECTS in an academic year to be allowed to advance to the next year of study.

In order to advance from one semester to the next, students must have paid all outstanding fees. Changes to registration are not permitted after 1 October in the autumn semester and 15 February in the spring semester.

A student’s total combined period of study must not exceed one year over and above the normal length of study, with the exception of absence due to maternity/paternity leave. The Rector, on recommendation of a Dean, may grant exceptions to this rule in special circumstances. In those cases, the respective students shall explain their circumstances in writing, stating their reasons for the application.

Master’s programmes

A minimum of 120 ECTS are required for MA, M.Mus. and M.Art.Ed. Degrees. The Academy’s curriculum is organised to allow for a maximum of 66 ECTS in one academic year and no more than 132 ECTS for the student’s whole period of study.

Master’s students in Design, Fine Art and Composition must complete a minimum of 48 ECTS in order to advance to the next year of study.

In order to advance from one semester to the next, students must have paid all outstanding fees. Changes to registration are not permitted after 1 October in the autumn semester and 15 February in the spring semester.

A student’s total uninterrupted period of study must not exceed one year above and beyond the normal length of study. In the Department of Arts Education, a student’s total uninterrupted period of study must not exceed two years of the normal length of study, with the exception of absence due to maternity/paternity leave. The Rector, on recommendation of a Dean, may grant exceptions to this rule under special circumstances. In those cases, the respective students shall explain their circumstances in writing, stating the reasons for their application.

Admission

The Iceland Academy of the Arts seeks talented and creative individuals with a solid basic education and a primary knowledge of art.

Applications for the academic year of 2016-2017 will open in January 2016.

The electronic application form is available on the website. Applicants need to submit the electronic form of the application. Other required documents and application procedures vary according to each department. For this reason, it is highly important that the applicant reads the relevant department information closely and follows the instructions carefully.

An application is not valid until the applicant has submitted the application, payed the application fee and IAA has received the following documents:

  • successfully submitted electronic form
  • signed print-out the electronic form
  • certified copy of degree certificates and school transcripts
  • other required documents (see relevant department information)

The electronic form must be printed out and signed once it has been completed and submitted. It is necessary to include a passport photo in the electronic form. The form should then be handed in or sent to the relevant department office together with the required documents.

Application Fee

IAA charges 5.000 IKR for each application. The application fee is charged to the applicants credit card when the application is submitted and is non refundable. The seller holds all information from the buyer in relation to the purchase as confidential. Under no circumstances will information be handed to a third party.

Study Design, Music & Art in Iceland

The Iceland Academy of the Arts is a platform for creativity, experiments and critical thinking. The academy offers a close network of academics, practioners and students in direct contact with the local culture and in the vicinity of the vast rural landscape of Iceland.

At the Iceland Academy of the Arts you will be part of a dynamic and close knit network of artists and designers where you have the freedom to experiment and discover new things about yourself and your professional practice.

Iceland's most prominent artists and designers are a part of and have studied at the Iceland Academy of the Arts such as Ragnar Kjartansson, Kjartan Sveinson (former member of Sigur Rós), Elfa Rún Kristinsdóttir, violinist and proffessor, Anna Þorvaldsdóttir, acclaimed composer, Vík Prjónsdóttir and Siggi Eggerts.

With creative thought, we change the world. Art is man´s way of understanding himself, his environment and his history and of creating a future. In the last few years, the economic value of the creative industries has become apparent to all. By art we change attitudes, we change people´s lives and in so doing, hopefully contributing to making the world a better place.

This school offers programs in:
  • English

View master programmes »

Programmes

This school also offers:

Master

MA Composition

Campus Full time August 2017 Iceland Reykjavik

This is a two-year study programme of 120 ECTS. The MA-programme in music composition provides the student the means to establish and develop his/her area of speciality as a composer. [+]

This is a two-year study programme of 120 ECTS. The MA-programme in music composition provides the student the means to establish and develop his/her area of speciality as a composer. The student can choose from different modules regarding musical theory, electro-acoustics, instrumentation and composition to support his/her field. In addition, with the aim of developing the students professional skills, the student can choose from programmes in entrepreneurship, project management or artistic reflective research. Practical information 120 ECTS two-year full-time study Interviews with applicants take place in May. Admissions will be announced in May The autumn semester begins August 25 Maximum number of students for MA Composition is 4 students per year Teaching is in English Tuition for the school-year 2016-17 is ISK 796.000 per academic year. Please send following documentation by post along with electronic application: successfully submitted electronic form signed print-out of the electronic form and motivation letter CV certified copy of degree certificates and school transcripts Portfolio of works Please visit our webpage for further information about the program: www.lhi.is/en [-]

MA Design

Campus Full time August 2017 Iceland Reykjavik

We now use the term “design” about thinking that reaches far beyond the traditional area of design, as design revolves first and foremost around shaping the space inside the human mind and spotting new possibilities. [+]

Thinking Shapes the World We now use the term “design” about thinking that reaches far beyond the traditional area of design, as design revolves first and foremost around shaping the space inside the human mind and spotting new possibilities. Design is research, transformative force and political action. Nothing is irrelevant to it, be it education, politics, business or society as a whole. The idea of designing things to sell in shops is now rather outdated, as the stated aims of design have become to lead thinking, to change attitudes and to have a positive influence on how people live. The demand is made of contemporary designers that they are aware of their responsibility and power in a world that has reached the utmost limits of materialism. Designers are important advocates of sustainability and responsible conduct, in built areas or in nature. They should be able to make out patterns as they appear in society, rearrange these and utilise for good work. Main focus A systematic understanding of the relationship between design and the environment. Students should know about the conceptual premises of design and be able to take a responsible stance towards the environment and society. Deeper knowledge and increased skill to engage with complex design projects. The gaze is directed towards urgent contemporary issues. A change for good in society by using the methodology of design to increase the quality of life and efficiency - and to create value. Encouraging students to constantly seek new solutions and to cultivate... [-]

MA Fine Art

Campus Full time August 2017 Iceland Reykjavik

The Master Programme in Fine Arts at the Iceland Academy of the Arts offers a platform for students to deepen their knowledge and increase their skills in the field of fine arts, strengthen their personal vision and relate their artistic practice to the discipline’s theoretical criteria. [+]

Profile and objectives of the study programme The Master Programme in Fine Arts at the Iceland Academy of the Arts offers a platform for students to deepen their knowledge and increase their skills in the field of fine arts, strengthen their personal vision and relate their artistic practice to the discipline’s theoretical criteria. The course makes great demands for independent working methods. There is an emphasis on the art practice and research involving a systematic building up of knowledge, that the students develop good command of both academic and practical parameters of fine art in preparation for work as independent artists in the contemporary art field. One of the unique features of the Iceland Academy of the Arts Master Programme is the students’ proximity to other disciplines in the arts at the Academy. Collaboration is offered in the field of fine arts, music, design and theatre through students´ independent work and development of their works. Master level programmes entail participation in the professional field of the arts. The Department of Fine Arts collaborates with all the main art institutions in this country, in addition to various collaborations with domestic and foreign academies, artists and curators and theorists in the international field of fine arts. Students are thereby exposed to countless opportunities for specialisation in connection with various areas of specific interests as well as projects related to nature and the country’s local characteristics. The main emphasis of the course is the promotion of the student’s independent and progressive visual creativity.... [-]

Videos

MA Design - Jiao Jiaoni

MA Design - Arite Fricke