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

Master's Programme in Art and Media - Visual Cultures, Curating and Contemporary Art

ViCCA explores emerging knowledges and practices at the intersections of visual cultures, curating and contemporary art. We facilitate students to develop and contextualize their own practices within and in between these contexts. The programme is open to artists, curators, scholars and practitioners with different backgrounds and experience, who are looking for opportunities to understand, challenge and shift the paradigms of contemporary art and the world around us.

A student walking on Aalto University campus in Otaniemi

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 Visual Culture and Artistic Practices

Laura Beloff

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

Assistant Professor of Curating and Mediating Art

Bassam El Baroni

Lucy Davis

Professor of Artistic Practice, Contemporary Art

Lucy Davis

Pia Euro


Aalto University logo, black & white
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