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Your Welcome Guide

We're delighted to have you join us at Arts University Bournemouth, and hope that your time here will be rewarding, challenging, creative and enjoyable.

Welcome to BA (Hons) Fine Art

This welcome pack is designed to give you an idea of what to expect during the first few weeks of your course. Please take the time to read it carefully.

A message from your Course Leader

Welcome to BA (Hons) Fine Art. You'll soon be joining an exciting degree course with an excellent reputation for student achievement and presenting your artwork professionally. When you arrive, there will be several essentials which have to be covered during the first week, such as enrolment and various introductions. But we intend to make that first week an interesting and enjoyable introduction to the course, the Arts University Bournemouth, and the surrounding area.

During Welcome Week, the staff team will show you around the campus and introduce you to the course. Some members of staff will also speak about their art practice.

We hope you have a very enjoyable summer. Please try to visit any contemporary or modern art exhibitions you can (in person or virtually) and any other places of interest, make notes and reflect upon significant things you have seen and done, and of course keep your hand in with your art practice. And of course keep enjoying your hobbies, as these interests can often become part of your art practice and be a source of inspiration.

- Richard Waring, Course Leader

Before you join us

It's important for you to understand your work within the context of contemporary fine art. Spend some time using the internet to browse through these current big exhibitions, there will be lots of information about the artists:

  • Venice Biennale 22
  • Documenta 22

From this research, choose two artists from these exhibitions, one you like and one you don’t like, consider what values the works hold and why things appeal to you or don’t. Collect digital images of the works and you will be told when to bring these to your first seminar (after induction week). Find out as much information on these artists and artworks as you can, this will be useful for your seminar discussions.

Please read pages 8-16 and more if you can of: An, K. & Cerasi, J. (2020) Who’s Afraid of Contemporary Art: An A-Z Guide to the Art World. London: Thames & Hudson.

The book is a good introduction to the context of Fine Art. It's available to buy for around £10, cheaper on eBay, or you can borrow it from the library when you arrive.

Make a note of any questions you have, anything you agree with or don’t for discussion when we start.

The Library at AUB is extremely well-resourced and includes all key texts that you'll need. Reading lists will be supplied in your course handbook and at the start of each unit on the course. The AUB library has a dedicated fine art librarian, Andy Calvert, who can help you find specific things.

Here's some further reading/viewing which will give you a good background to the course:

  • Chapter 13 ‘What is Contemporary Art?’ in Terry Smith (2012) What is Contemporary Art. Univ. of Chicago Press.
  • Please have a look at Grayson Perry’s book Playing to the Gallery (2014). Choose some of the book that seems interesting and note down any questions that you think it raises.

We'll use these as the basis for some introductory discussions.

Over the summer, please try to read:

  • A-N
  • Frieze
  • Modern Painters
  • Art Monthly
  • Art Forum
  • Turps Banana (one painting magazine and one sculpture)

  • Tate Shots, short videos on Turner Prize Nominees (Search on YouTube)
  • Bishop, C. (2005). ‘But is it Installation Art?’, TATE,
  • (General info on resources and life as an artist)
  • (An artist run magazine)
  • SIDEWAYS Exploring ideas that shape our lives:

What to bring on your first day

All you need to bring on your first day is a smile, a notebook and a pen/pencil.

Students are asked to provide the following items for use on the course:

  • Memory stick for backing up your computer work (but you'll get your own cloud storage).
  • Materials appropriate to your individual practice, such as brushes, palettes, palette knives, pots, containers etc.
  • A selection tools for your personal use and interests – we supply power tools.
  • A4 plastic file for research, photographic and other hard copy material.
  • Notebooks and sketchbooks.
  • Camera/video camera are handy if you have one (you can also loan these from AUB)

You're advised to build up a personal collection of materials and equipment.

All materials are provided for the staff-led workshops.

Further core practice materials, for example canvas or plater are offered at cost price, you won’t need to buy these for several weeks as you will be attending staff led workshops initially.

Course trip

Fine Art Residential Study Visit
Monday 31 October - Friday 4 November 2022

Please read the following information very carefully.

The Venice Biennale is the largest and considered the most important exhibition of contemporary art on the planet. It is held every two years, so if you don’t go this time, you have the option of going with the course in your third year. We get special group discounts for everything which keeps the cost as low as it can be, there is no profit made from the cost. The visit is open to all three years of the Fine Art course.

If you have any questions regarding the information below please contact Tilly Collins.

The Milk of Dreams

Curated by Cecilia Alemani

Cecilia Alemani begins her curator (re)search by asking various questions. Of these, one in particular seems to me to summarise them all: “How is the definition of human changing?” Her work begins with the identification of an inspiration, Leonora Carrington, from whose art she develops strands and themes that are represented by artists who relate “the representation of bodies and their metamorphoses; the relationship between individuals and technologies; the connection between bodies and the Earth.” The works in the exhibition mirror some of their “ancestors” in dedicated spaces, telling us where today’s artists have drawn their inspiration from.

Total cost: £550

Payment deposit strictly by July 14 via this hidden link on the AUB store:

Deposit by 5 Sept: £150

Balance by 7 Oct: £400

The visit has limited places, if the visit fills up, we will try to get extra places.

Monday 31 October to Friday 4 November 2022

This is during the Fine Art course term 1 consolidation/reading week

  • 5 days, 4 nights
  • 70 student places
  • 5 staff attending

The visit will encompass a good-quality four-night hostel stay; this'll have shared bedrooms with up to six of your fellow students, you'll select who to share with before we go.

The visit cost will include:

  • Return flights with easyJet from London Gatwick
  • Checked in luggage 23 kg
  • Return transfers from AUB campus to the airport
  • Return boat transfers in Venice to the hostel from the airport
  • Four nights B&B with continental breakfast
  • Two days entrance to the official Venice Biennale, which is over two main sites
  • Three-day vaporetto boat / bus ticket, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
  • The city tax for each person
  • Whole group pizza meal on the first night

Flights are from Gatwick with easyJet:

Mon 31 Oct: Depart 09.30 arrive 12.40 Flight 8063

Fri 4 Nov: Depart 20.15 arrive 21.10 Flight 8070

You will be asked to declare any medical conditions after the visit is full so don’t declare these yet.

Around 120 Euros for the week as spending money will be okay.

Venice can be very expensive for food if you are not careful where you buy food, don’t eat at main tourist site restaurants, go to supermarkets.

Venice can be wet and cold, so please wear suitable clothing and footwear for lots of walking.

Educational Trips Support:

Support for educational trips is available to students who must be domiciled in England, receiving the full maintenance loan for the current academic year and have an annual household income of less than £25,000. Only official AUB trips arranged through the AUB Online Store are eligible for Educational Visits support, and each request must be signed off by the course leader. Educational Trips support is a maximum of £400 per academic year. If you wish to apply for the fund, you can do so via the funding tile on your MyAUB portal.

New first year students:

If you are a new student about to enter the first year in September, you won’t be able to apply for the Educational Trips Support money until you have enrolled. If you are then eligible you will receive the deposit money back and hopefully receive the £400 before the balance payment is due on the 7 October.

Current student work

Have a look through some of the work our current students are producing to get an idea of the type of work you may be making on our course.

Follow BA (Hons) Fine Art on social media

Explore more


We're delighted to have you join us at Arts University Bournemouth
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Next Steps

Find out the useful dates and contact before you start here
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We are looking forward to welcoming you to BA Fine Art this year in just a few weeks!