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Art and Design Programme

Ashbourne students explore a wide variety of art and design disciplines so they can make informed decisions on their final A level choices and prepare for a career in the art world.

University-style programme

The Art Faculty offers expert guidance and comprehensive support for students applying for art degree courses at university. Students aiming for a career in art and design are encouraged to study four A levels in their first year, including two art subjects. This provides the opportunity for them to explore these subjects in depth and gives them the flexibility to continue with both art subjects in their second year or to specialise in one.

The Programme enables students to develop and broaden their technical skills and visual understanding and allows for greater flexibility and time to create an impressive (coursework) portfolio over the whole course. Students get the opportunity to explore a wide selection of art and design disciplines, within their A level classes and during extra-curricular classes, including Drawing, Life Drawing, Printmaking, Sculpture, Digital Art, Photography, Fabrics and Textiles. This allows them to make informed decisions, based on their interests, aptitude and skill, on which areas to specialise in.

Careers in the art world

Many of our students preparing for a career in art go on to apply to prestigious art colleges in London and the UK including Central Saint Martins, Chelsea, Camberwell and London College of Communication (all part of UAL), Slade (UCL), Ravensbourne, Westminster, Kingston and Brunel. We encourage students to enrol for full-time preliminary Art and Design Foundation courses prior to degree study and have strong links with Foundation course providers such as the City and Guilds of London Art School.

Individual style and original artwork

Students learn a broad range of practical and theoretical skills and techniques that allow them to express themselves visually, cultivate their own distinct style and create original artwork. They are also encouraged to broaden their understanding and appreciation of art through study trips and excursions in order to help contextualise and bring depth to their own work.

Excellent facilities and superb location

Ashbourne’s spacious and light art studios are equipped for working in a variety of media including painting, sculpture, textiles, printmaking and photography. There are black and white, and colour darkrooms as well as digital print and image manipulation facilities.

Ashbourne’s central London location makes it ideal for visiting some of the world’s finest art galleries, museums and events including The National Gallery, The National Portrait Gallery, The Royal Academy of Arts, Tate Modern and Britain, The Design Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum and London Fashion Week.

Creative arts events

Students are offered outstanding opportunities to showcase their talents and artwork both at the college and further afield, as part of their professional development.

Ashbourne’s Creative Arts Evening allows current and former students the chance to share their art, music, poetry and fashion at a nearby venue. Students and staff from across the college also take part in the very popular annual Ashbourne Revue to show off their skills and talents in art, fashion, music, dance and drama. This is a fantastic chance especially for Fashion and Textile students to unveil their masterpieces on the catwalk.

Prize-winning arts students

Art and Design students are also invited, by the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, to exhibit their work at the beautiful Victorian Leighton House museum in Kensington as part of a borough-wide schools exhibition every June. Ashbourne students have always been very successful at this event and often win prizes for their work. This invitation also entitles them to put forward their artwork for the Art on Loan programme where local businesses will pay to hire, and occasionally buy, students’ art.

European art trip

A real highlight for Ashbourne’s art and design students is the chance to visit one of Europe’s culturally rich cities, such as Barcelona, Paris and Vienna, where they can experience some of the world’s greatest art collections on a structured and expertly guided art trip – usually spread over four days during the Autumn half term.

How to apply

Ashbourne offers an adult-approach to learning which is less formal than most schools yet is demanding and disciplined. We believe this helps nurture confident, self-reliant and independent thinking students prepared for the next stages of their lives. We attract students from all over the world making the college a vibrant, diverse and exciting place to learn.

Please get in touch to apply for a place on Ashbourne’s Art and Design Programme. Email, admissions@ashbournecollege.co.uk, call +44 (0) 20 7937 3858 or complete the enquiry form below.

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