Institutionen för konst

Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art (ViCCA)

Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art (ViCCA) är ett tvåårigt magisterprogram vid Aalto-universitetets högskola för konst, design och arkitektur i Finland.

Welcome to ViCCA

    Four ViCCA students stand apart amongst the forest trees looking for mushrooms
    A ViCCA student stands in front of projected screens talking about her work with a macbook in hand
    A student hangs her work from one of the stairwells in the Vare building at Aalto University
    A student arches over the laboratory workspace to look more closely at some of the petri dishes laid out before her. In the background, two students converse with each other.
    Students gather outside an old military bunker, in the middle of a forest, on the island of Reposaari
    Green moss is placed around a macbook as part of an exhibition display
    Close up of a digital piece showing swirls of blue and some fictional text laid over the top

    ***Images taken before the Covid-19 pandemic prior to official recommendations for social distancing and mask use. Please follow current guidelines and stay safe!

    Lär känna oss

    About ViCCA

    About ViCCA

    Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art (ViCCA) is a two-year Master’s Programme at Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture situated in the Greater Helsinki area of Finland. ViCCA’s goal is to optimise the working across disciplines, fields of research, and various occupations that is becoming a hallmark of our times. The programme considers visual culture, curating and contemporary art an agora in which conversations, negotiations, and articulations between theory, science, technology, ecology, urbanism, popular culture, economies and thinking around societal impact can be emboldened.

    Department of Art
    The ViCCA prograne

    Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art - Art and Media, Master of Arts (Art and Design)

    Huvudämnet ViCCA för samman konstnärer, kuratorer och forskare som strävar efter att förstå, utmana och förändra rådande paradigm i samtidskonsten och världen runt oss.

    Three happy students in overalls in the Aalto University metro entrance

    Studera vid Aalto

    Här vid Aalto-universitetet tror vi på kraften hos nyfikenhet och uppmuntrar de studerande till att utforska det okända samtidigt som de lär sig och gör saker på ett helt nytt sätt.

    Apply to ViCCA

    How to apply to ViCCA

    The admissions to Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art (ViCCA) are organised once a year. The current application time is December 1, 2021 – January 3, 2022.

    Department of Art
    Student Community at ViCCA

    ViCCA student community

    Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art (ViCCA) has a lively student community that organizes variety of activities (for example community dinners, exhibitions and other extracurricular activities). ViMMA is the Student Association for the students of (ViCCA) through which most of these activities are organized.

    Department of Art

    The programme merges theoretical and practice-based artistic and curatorial processes, offering an opportunity for the students to develop, deepen and re-contextualise their skills and knowledge across disciplines. At ViCCA, the faculty works with students to diversify and develop their knowledge base, offering concrete opportunities to develop research competencies, methodologies and a sense for artistic and critical thinking. 

    Art, visual culture and the forms of organisation that go into making them public cannot be described as a mirror of society but rather they are and always have been an active agent in worldmaking. Characterised by a strong transdisciplinary approach across art, science and technology, ViCCA offers students access to emerging knowledge and practices at the intersections of multiple fields through an arts-driven engagement with societal, political, economic, ecological and philosophical concerns. 

    Encouraging experimentation with diverse practices, contexts and forms of research, ViCCA is open to artists, practitioners, curators and research-oriented individuals with different backgrounds and experience, who are looking for opportunities to understand, challenge and shift the paradigm of contemporary art and the world around us. 


    Poster for ViCCA MA thesis presentation event

    MA ViCCA Thesis Presentations Autumn, 14 October 2021

    Join us online for thesis presentations from the Master's Program in Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art.

    Four copies of The Waiting Room (Practising Building a Nest) lay together on white paper. Two covers are white, two are sky blue. They all show printed line drawings.

    The Waiting Room (Practising Building a Nest), a hand-printed book by Athanasía Aarniosuo and Ronya Hirsma

    Between January and June 2021, Athanasía Aarniosuo and Ronya Hirsma shared their thought, fears, and hopes in a series of letters to each other.

    Department of Art
    Video still of the poetry video Asking for permission. The performer stands, dressed in black, against a white screen while a co-performer places a scarf over her head

    Pyydän lupaa // Asking for permission, Poetry Video by Kirsi-Marja Moberg

    MA ViCCA student's poetry video and interactive performance, Asking for permission, depicts the things in our lives that we ask permission for.

    Department of Art
    Saara Salmi painting in Keran Hallit. Deep red roots spread out across the wall

    Concreate Urban Art Festival Comes to Keran Hallit

    Artists transform the interior of Keran Hallit for the Concreate Urban Art Festival 2021.

    Department of Art
    Still from the film Like Shadows Through Leaves, 2021. A lamp-lit tent stands in a dark landscape, it's orange interior matching the orange skyline

    Like Shadows Through Leaves Awarded FIPRESCI Prize at Oberhausen

    {if your bait can sing the wild one will come} Like Shadows Through Leaves wins the FIPRESCI Prize at Oberhausen 2021.

    Screenshot of Somewhere I Go Places on the ViCCA Production webpage. Black text on yellow background, 'to remodel ViCCA production you must destroy ViCCA production'

    ViCCA Production 2021: Sometimes I Go Places

    ViCCA Production addresses the idea that artistic practice and research requires experimenting with how the practice and research is performed to a public

    Department of Art
    an artwork made of ceramics depicting a pony

    ViCCA students' exhibition (Un)seen: In the Dazzle of Infrastructure at Galleria Aarni

    The exhibition (Un)seen: In the Dazzle of Infrastructure starts from an analysis of infrastructure with a focus beyond its more tangible manifestations. Infrastructure shapes not only our physical landscape, but our habits, culture, and temporality. It is at its most effective when it blends seamlessly into our surroundings and evades our consciousness. The exhibition’s approach to infrastructure is built around the solar, each project drawing different connections to infrastructural byproducts and our connection to the sun. (Un)seen: In the Dazzle of Infrastructure is a collective curatorial project and exhibition realized by ViCCA students. It features works both by course participants and artists selected through an open call.

    Department of Art
    Promotional Graphic for Tick Talks. Yellow and Purple text on a green background

    TICK TALKs: Questing Ticks with Laura Beloff, Kira O'Reilly and Jani Sormunen

    Artists Laura Beloff and Kira O'Reilly discuss methods of tick population fieldwork with Jani Sormunen from University of Turku.

    Department of Art
    Image of a book cover

    On the Philosophy of Central European Art Published by Rowman & Littlefield's Lexington Books

    Senior University Lecturer Max Ryynänen's book is an introduction to the history of the concept and the institution of (fine) art, from its ancient Southern European roots to the establishment of the modern system of the arts in eighteenth century Central Europe.

    Department of Art
    museum of impossible forms

    Museum of Impossible Forms wins State Art Prize 2020

    ViCCA congratulates its students and alumni who have been active (and often founding) members of the Museum of Impossible Forms (est. 2017) – an anti-racist and queer-feminist cultural center in the suburb of Kontula – for the 2020 State Art Prize that they received from the Arts Promotion Centre Finland.



    MA ViCCA Thesis Presentations Spring, 9-10 June 2021

    Join us online for thesis presentations from the Master's Program in Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art.

    Poster with details of the spring thesis presentations day one. Turquoise circle against a blue backdrop

    MA ViCCA Thesis Presentations 20 May 2021

    We continue into the Spring term with thesis presentations from students completing their Masters in Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art.

    Thesis May 2021 presentations. Purple background with bright orange circles in the forefront

    Like Shadows Through Leaves Selected for 67th International Short Film Festival Oberhausen

    {if your bait can sing the wild one will come} Like Shadows Through Leaves by The Migrant Ecologies Project has been selected for the International Competition at the 67th International Short Film Festival Oberhausen.

    Still from the film Like Shadows Through Leaves, 2021. A figure stands next to a minimalist wall wearing a cardboard bird mask

    International Women's Day 2021: Feminist Practices and Practitioners from the MA ViCCA Programme

    A series of contributions from practitioners who are speaking, listening, conversing, making, reading and writing about feminist practices.

    An image of fine lines drawn by the artist Mira Caselius. The lines are light on a dark background, some are concentrated, others are spread sparsely.

    MA ViCCA Thesis Presentations Spring 18 March 2021

    The first presentation of 2021 from MA ViCCA graduating students will take place on Thursday 18 March.

    Purple-tone poster with details of the speaker(s) for the upcoming ViCCA Thesis presentation day on Thursday 18 March 2021

    LASER at Aalto Launches with Adaptation and Bodies in Context, Moderated by Laura Beloff

    Adaptation and Bodies in Context will inaugurate LASER at Aalto University. Moderated by Laura Beloff, Head of the ViCCA programme.

    A poster with a pink background with text stating the three speakers and moderator for Adaptation and Bodies in Context LASER talk

    peripheries in parallax: BRAVE NEW PERIPHERIES, Opening Conference and Art Event

    peripheries in parallax: BRAVE NEW PERIPHERIES is a two-part conference mapping out the implications and alliances of ‘peripheries’ and ‘peripheral approaches’ through art, artistic research and related fields in society. Alongside the conference, a durational, curated Art Event ‘MATTER’ takes place at the Aalto University Campus. The opening event will be held on the 22nd January 2021.

    Artists from the peripheries in parallax research group take part in a performance: they hold a red string between them. They stand in a snowy forest.

    MA ViCCA Thesis Presentations 14 December 2020

    MA students in Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art present their thesis research in an online event.

    A series of colourful circles frame the names and thesis topics for 14 December 2020

    ViCCA Students Launch Walk & Talk Initiative: #1 Mushroom Picking in Nuuksio

    The first ViCCA Walk & Talk took place on 17 October 2020 in the Nuuksio National Park.

    A student holds an orange birch bolete mushroom - it has a bright terracotta top and a darker stem

    ViCCA Thesis Fall II Presentations, 26-27 November 2020

    MA ViCCA students present their thesis research and papers in an online event.

    Orange and brown circles from the background of this poster with the names and topics of the upcoming MA ViCCA presentees

    Inaugural ViCCA CROW Awards & Graduation Picnic (and Senior CROW Award for Retiring Senior Lecturer, Taina Rajanti)

    On 17 June as we emerged from lockdown, the MA program in Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art (ViCCA) hosted an appropriately-socially-distanced, graduation picnic beside the Aalto University amphitheatre. 

    ViCCA's staff and students in front of the amphitheater on the Otaniemi campus. Sunny day of June.

    Online MA Evaluations Next Week at ViCCA 15-17 June

    Online MA Evaluations Next Week at ViCCA 15-17 June

    ViCCA thesis presentation poster 15.6-17.6.2020

    Den här sidan är under utveckling. Gå till vår nuvarande sida (på engelska) för uppdateringar om våra senaste projekt och mycket mer!

    Our staff

    Laura Beloff

    Associate Professor of Contemporary Art and Artistic Practices and Head of Doctoral Education in the Department of Art & Media (DAM)

    Beloff Laura - selfie

    Max Ryynänen

    Senior University Lecturer in Theory of Visual Culture

    A photograph of Max Ryynänen, a Senior Lecturer on the Theory of Visual Culture at Aalto University’s Department of Art.

    Bassam el Baroni

    Associate Professor of Curating and Mediating Art

    Bassam El Baroni. Photo by Mikko Raskinen 2023

    Lucy Davis

    Professor of Artistic Practice, Contemporary Art

    Lucy Davis

    Pia Euro


    Aalto University logo, black & white

    Patrizia Costantin

    Head of Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art (ViCCA) major and University Lecturer in Curating

    Photo of Patrizia Costantin
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