Bachelor of Arts in Fine arts

The five options in the HEAD – Genève bachelor’s course in visual arts are run by teams of artists, theorists and curators from Switzerland and elsewhere. This innovative structure provides an approach that goes beyond the traditional divisions into media (painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, video, performance and new media), themes (bodies, spaces, images, interfaces, realities and reproductions) or methods (books, programmes, studios, projects, collective or individual initiatives). Its unusual groupings are based on the hybrid reality of contemporary artistic practice. The theoretical instruction provides a multivocal approach that blends readings across time, practices and disciplines of thought. The specialised classes, focusing on production, offer a high-quality interdisciplinary technical approach and a series of 1:1-scale artistic experiments.

Head of Department

Scientific deputy

Options
Appropriation - images, documents, publishing

Images
Documents
Editing

This option is intended for students who wish to develop their artistic practice through a critical approach to visual culture. Whether selecting extracts in order to (re)work them, appropriating pre-existing material purely and simply to reorganize it (such as sampling in music) or developing practices that seek to establish more egalitarian exchanges with the fields they explore (management of image banks, collection of folk objects, etc), what we call “appropriation” covers a wide range of practices linked to every aspect of creativity, from drawing, painting, photography and animation to the publishing of artist’s books, performance and writing.

Responsable

Assistants

Teaching staff

Invited speakers

François Chastenet, Mathis Gasser, Aurélie Pétrel, Olivier Richon, Christoph Schifferli

Action / Interaction - performances, writing, digital practices

Performances
Writings
Digital culture

The Art/Action option explores the relationship between art and action, both from a concrete and a theoretical perspective. Here we seek to develop artistic work whose modus operandi is specific, because the form of the work is set in the here and now, in it’s making of. The Art/ Action option trans-cends disciplines, media and categories of representation (even though performance is perhaps its closest definition), paving the way for research and development focusing on creativity in action.

Responsable

Assistants

Teaching staff

Invited speakers

Raffael Dörig, Gilles Furtwängler, La Ribot

Construction - sculpture, objects, installations

Sculpture
Objects
Installations

The Construction option offers a cross-disciplinary approach to sculpture, installation and space viewed in their broader context: the production of objects, assemblage, systems, media, public art, environments and sound. The option adopts a dual approach that closely integrates the place of the workshop within the school with the development of events outside its walls— in public spaces or in the context of international exhibitions—and offers a formal and conceptual initiation that seeks to align the student’s project and its gradual formalization with the cultural, social and political dimension of mutual acceptance, the collective and the city.

Responsable

Assistants

Teaching staff

Invited speakers

Paul Bernard, Koenrad Dedobbeleer, Elise Lammer

Information/fiction - photography, video, media

Photography
Video
Medias

What does an artist do with a device that records, reproduces and diffuses images and sounds? Unwilling to simply add images to a spectacular world already saturated with them, they put forward a specific relationship with the cultural and social environment. This relationship may involve fiction or autobiographical stories, documents, the constitution of archives, diversion, anthropological studies, participation in communities, etc. Through the awareness of social and cultural issues, we aim to introduce students to a political understanding of the image in practice. The option encourages self-exploration as they work on their projects and the questioning of the conditions of their recognition.

Responsable

Assistants

Teaching staff

Invited speakers

Lukas Hoffmann, Pauline Martin

Representation - painting, drawing, installation

Painting
Drawing
Installation

Using the specific tools of painting, drawing and installation, how can we think outside the framework of a blank canvas or sheet of drawing paper? Through the rationale of the workshop, this option engages with day-to-day creativity and issues of a theoretical nature. It offers a broad understanding of art and images viewed in their cultural, social and political context. Combining various other media and techniques—from publishing to the moving image and performance—this option leaves students’ suggestions open, rather than consigning them to a particular current or trend. Here, on the contrary, professors help to breathe life into evolving projects, responding in real time to the needs of evolving independent thought.

Responsable

Assistants

Zara Idelson

Teaching staff

Invited speakers

Tiphaine Blanc, Dan Coombs, Fredi Fischli

Theoretical teaching

Theoretical teaching, in the form of courses and seminars, provides a progressive approach that combines chronological readings using various artistic media (photography, video, performance etc.) and disciplines of thought (art history, philosophy, cultural studies and so on). Its purpose is to help students acquire knowledge and think critically. It is linked to the production of theoretical work and based on interdisciplinary research projects. Some of the courses are organized in partnership with other institutions (including the University of Geneva).

Teaching staff

Documents attachés

Study plan and detailed courses - in French

Specialized teaching

The specialized courses involve a high-level technical approach (provided by artists), allowing students to acquire skills specific to various necessary media (drawing, video, sound) and knowledge of cross-cutting fields when devising artistic projects (colour, object, format). At the same time, 1:1 projects are offered by HEAD’s Laboratoires ALPEs, Writing and Publishing Laboratories. These courses include conceptual thinking and formal experimentation, and focus on the development of personal work linked to the research carried out in the various options.

Teaching staff

Documents attachés

Study plan and detailed courses - in French