Painting & Printmaking

Key Facts


Programme Overview

How to Apply

Institution Name: GSA
Institution Code: G43
UCAS Code: W120


BA(Hons) Fine Art. All GSA degree programmes are validated by the University of Glasgow. Established in 1451, the University of Glasgow is a member of the prestigious Russell Group of leading UK research universities and a founder member of Universitas 21, an international grouping of universities dedicated to setting worldwide standards for higher education.


Coursework, essays, practical design projects. Formative (i.e. advisory) assessments take place at key points throughout the year with summative (final, graded) assessments at the end of each academic year.

All students have access to their own studio space, and electronic media resources in the Media Studio. Printmaking facilities include a range of presses (offset proofing; stone lithography; etching; Columbian relief), Zinc-plate stone and photographic litho are also catered for and there is a purpose-designed acid room, photo-etch and photo-polymer facilities and a number of Kippax and Natgraph vacuum beds. There is also a Natgraph self-contained exposure unit.

Indicative Material Costs
Year 1: £200
Year 2: £400
Year 3: £500
Year 4: £750
Additional costs will be incurred for activities such as study trips and workshops

Graduates pursue careers in numerous fields, including: community education, electronic media and web design, teaching and arts administration and include some of Scotland’s leading artists including Lesley Banks, Steven Campbell, Robert Colquhoun, Robbie Coltrane, Stephen Conroy, Ken Currie, Emilio Coia, Joan Eardley, Peter Howson, Margaret Hunter, Jack Knox, Toby Paterson, Jenny Saville and Alison Watt

Head of Department
Jim Birrell

Laurie Figgis
Marianne Greated
Annette Heyer
Louise Hopkins
Lynn Hynd
Stuart Mackenzie
Mick McGraw
Craig Mulholland
Susanne Nielsen
Ciara Phillips
Alex Pollard
Carol Rhodes
Fiona Robertson
Eddie Stewart
Amanda Thomson
Hanneline Visnes
Richard Walker

Michael Stubbs

Programme Overview

The Department of Painting and Printmaking is the largest specialist department within the School of Fine Art and the programme of study provides an increase the breadth of experience and learning opportunities for students.

The programme aims to equip students with the necessary skills and expertise to realise their full creative potential and to pursue a career in the visual arts or other chosen professions. Each year is designed to ensure that it builds upon the previous year in terms of content, skill development and individual research.  Students are provided with a sound knowledge of the theory and practice of their subject before developing personal study paths and self-motivated programmes of work in the final year. Staff will help students to acquire the theoretical and practical skills needed as a practising artist and all students will be exposed to a wide range of views from both staff and visiting artists.

Painting is a very long-standing human activity, and is as much the outcome of thought and reflection as writing a novel or a theoretical scientific paper. An awareness of the history and traditions of painting are fundamental to our programme of study.

The Painting programme reflects the complex and changing conditions of art today, responding to new ideas and encouraging innovation. Painting in Glasgow is understood as a vehicle of thought and an intellectual discipline capable of great expressive powers. The Department encompasses a wide range of approaches to the subject and students have the opportunity to extend their work, in addition to printmaking, into areas such as electronic media and photography.

Print exists as a vital force in our everyday lives, providing an effective means for communicating ideas and disseminating information. Printmaking at The Glasgow School of Art is based on an exploration of visual representation allied to the materials, processes and formats of established and developing technologies.

For the student, an understanding of the continuing relationship between reproduction and expression, the original and the copy, fine art and printed information, will engender an awareness of the print as a primary form of visual art, whilst supporting the creation of work informed by critical debate.

The Printmaking programme is structured around two principal areas of activity, the studio and the workshop. The three main areas of technical provision in the workshops are etching, lithography and silkscreen. There are also extensive facilities for relief printing, photo-mechanical and reprographic processing and a comprehensive print-specific digital imaging suite.

Forum for Critical Inquiry

A element of the programme is delivered by the Forum for Critical Inquiry (FoCI) The Forum is an essential component of the programme. For most of the four years of undergraduate programmes in design and fine art, one day per week of the student timetable is allocated to the Forum.  It is a cross-school and externally linked critical mass of diverse research expertise in broad-based critical studies for contemporary creative practices in design, art and architecture.

The range of teaching styles varies from traditional keynote lectures to interactive discussion groups and experiential learning. Courses are constructed in order to both underpin studio practice and to open out and extend the range of student research.

All students are required to attend lectures and discussion groups, to make oral presentations, to write essays and in the final year, to present a piece of personal research in the form of an Extended Essay (20% of the final degree mark) or a Dissertation (30% of the final degree mark).

Students requiring learning support are provided with additional teaching tailored to individual needs. Each student also has a departmental contact tutor who acts in an advisory and pastoral capacity in relation to progress in Forum for Critical Inquiry.