MASTER OF ARTS
Design and display where and when it matters most.
The Master of Arts in Exhibition Design (MA|EX) program explores the intersection of design and public communications, in the nation’s capital, at a critical moment in the history of cultural discourse and spatial practice.
Exhibition design, in the MA|EX program at GW’s Corcoran School, is more than the design of spaces that convey information, share stories or promote products. It does more than relate artworks, objects and audiences in experiential compositions. It has the potential to tell us about how we are living and how we could be living.
MA|EX students take up the charge to rethink connections in the world. They find shapes for ideas and identities and orient them for diverse publics. They choreograph forms, facts and fictions that put people in touch with each other and with the (built) environment. They design exhibitions as sites of material expression and activism.
The interdisciplinarity of the MA|EX program prepares students to innovate through exhibitions. Students work with curators, artists, and institutions. You will design in dialogue—drawing on multiple art, design, and social practices. And, you will develop dexterity, through training in analog craft and digital fabrication, studies in history and theory and exercises in real-world application.
The MA|EX program coordinates with Washington, DC’s extensive network of national museums. It also engages the city at-large, identifying opportunities for exhibition in its places of memory and monument, performance and protest, and commerce and leisure.
M.A. in Exhibition Design
Date: Tuesday, October 29, 2019
Time: 7:00-8:00 p.m. EST
Date: Wednesday, December 4, 2019
Time: 8:30-9:30 a.m. EST
Date: Thursday, January 16, 2020
Time: noon-1:00 p.m. EST
PROGRAM OF STUDY
The MA|EX curriculum is studio-centered. Each semester, the exhibition design studio acts as a hub for complementing coursework. Through the studio structure, students do fieldwork, navigate exhibition settings and scenarios, and apply external knowledge and skills in design for exhibitions.
Supporting classes are topical, in exhibition design history, theory, and criticism, in exhibition design practices, and in specializations. Specialized electives allow students to advance as designers or to acquire expertise in digital humanities, programming and performance and museum studies.
The MA|EX program is a sequential, 48-unit, two-year course of study.
The MA|EX program welcomes new students in the fall only. The deadline for admission is February 1.
COSTS & FUNDING
The Student Accounts Office provides up to date cost information on our program. The program has a number of support packages that it offers to select students, and students are automatically considered as part of the application process. You may also find fellowships through the Office of Fellowships & Assistantships. The Office of Student Financial Assistance also has more information on aid opportunities.
WHERE YOU'LL GO
MA|EX students access the exhibition design profession throughout their coursework, during fieldwork, with sponsored studios, and in internships. The curricular experiences reflect working trajectories available to MA|EX alumni. Often, the relationships that students cultivate while in the MA|EX program develop into careers.
Exhibition design is a versatile course of study. MA|EX graduates work in and with museums, are design studio associates, oversee construction and fabrication enterprises, lead arts organizations, and are independent entrepreneurs.
- Freer & Sackler Gallery
- Hamiltonian Gallery
- Phillips Collection
- The National Air and Space Museum
- The National Gallery of Art
- The National Museum of African American History and Culture
- The National Museum of American History
- The National Portrait Gallery
- Renwick Gallery
- Smithsonian Institution
- The Textile Museum
- Local Museums: Many of the recent internship sponsors and studio collaborators, including the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution and the National Gallery of Art
- National Museums: including The Getty and Whitney Museum of American Art
- Arts and Non-Profit Organizations: including Halcyon House
- (Non-)Governmental and Professional Organizations: including Inter-American Development Bank Art Collection & Cultural Center and The Society for Experiential Graphic Design
- Multi-Disciplinary Design Studios: including C&G Partners, Cortina Productions, Gallagher & Associates, Howard+Revis, The PRD Group, and Thinc Design
- Design Fabricators and Vendors: including F. Schumacher and Quatrefoil
WHO WE ARE
MA|EX faculty are architects, artists, designers, fabricators, curators, managers and directors. They represent museums, design studios, institutions and organizations and individual enterprises. They recognize the power and potential of exhibition design and work tirelessly to elevate the discipline and educate its practitioners.
MA|EX students are designers with narratives to share. They are storytellers with maker sensibilities. They are community activists, cultural critics, and educators who are developing a public practice. They have formal design training or they have learned by doing. They see in exhibition design an outlet for conceptual and material speculation and an opportunity to join a public conversation.
Administrative Offices, Flagg Building
500 17th St, NW
Graduate Faculty Advisor