Madonna and Child

MA Arts of China

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Fees: £27,500.00


Christie’s Education is the first British institution to offer a programme devoted exclusively to the Arts of China, covering the Neolithic period to the 21st century. You will acquire the visual skills and vocabulary to analyse works of art and will gain insight into Chinese art histories and art-world practice.

Teaching methods focus on object-based study. Capitalising on the abundance of artworks that continuously pass through Christie’s, we make frequent visits to the salerooms to handle works of art, preview sales and meet specialists. Visits to museums, commercial galleries and private collections give you privileged access to works of art and provide invaluable insights into the art world. All students will have the opportunity to undertake credit-bearing work experience at Christie’s auction house.

In addition to exploring the rich holdings in UK collections, the programme includes two international study trips – one in Europe (usually Paris to observe the variations between French and British collecting and exhibition practice) and a longer sojourn in Hong Kong, Taiwan and China. These study trips enable first-hand access to the best museum holdings of Chinese art in the world, place you in the centres of artistic creativity and convey the global dimensions of Chinese art production and the art market.


Course dates

Course Calendar 2017 - 2018
19 September 2017 - 22 June 2018

Programme Information
Status: Full Time
Duration: MA 12 Months

Programme Fee:

Nixi Cura Programme Director 
Dr Monica Merlin Lecturer 

International study trips have included:
Beijing • Hong Kong • Paris • Shanghai • Taipei


Arts of China  is currently validated by The Open University*

Faculty and visiting experts from academia, museums, the non-profit sector and the commercial art world lead sessions around the core lecture curriculum and in curatorial studies. You will participate in student-led seminars in art historical research and in the theories and methods that have shaped the field. Written assignments drawn from a variety of professional models include essays, critical reviews and curatorial reports. You will learn to catalogue works of art, using artworks consigned by the auction house. The thesis takes the form of an exhibition catalogue, combining the practical and art historical skills that you have accumulated throughout the year. 

The Arts of China programme has already trained many of the next generation of art-world professionals. During the academic year, professional development sessions will familiarise you with a vast spectrum of job opportunities. Besides getting behind the scenes in museums and the auction house, you will meet professionals employed in a variety of fields, from dealing, curating and exhibition organisation to art insurance, marketing, publishing and academia.  

While a number of recent graduates have found jobs at Christie’s and other auction houses all over the world, others have become museum curators, entered arts administration, work in commercial galleries or have started up their own art-related businesses. Some have chosen to continue advanced research at PhD level.


You should demonstrate genuine motivation for a postgraduate-level course in the arts of China.  

Applications are encouraged from those wishing to change career, professionals and mature students with experience of the art world. 

You should have a good understanding and demonstrable knowledge of the history of art. In particular they should be able to identify and discuss key works of Chinese art. 

The ability to speak, read and/or write Chinese is not a prerequisite for application, but the programme will involve mastery of specialised Chinese-language terminology. You should show a capacity for sustained intense work and the ability to manage and organise your time.


Admissions Requirements

  • Completed application
  • A university degree, normally at 2.1 level
  • Applicants whose first language is not English should normally have IELTS 7
  • Applicants must also provide a 1,000 – 2,000 word writing sample on an art related subject.
  • CV/Resume
  • Personal Statement
  • Two academic letter references on institutional letterhead (or equivalent professional references for mature students)
  • Scanned colour copy of passport photo page and previous UK visas if applicable.

As a small institution, places are limited. Applicants are advised to submit an application as soon as possible from the October of the year before they wish to study. The priority deadline has now passed however applications will be accepted until a programme is full.




19–23 September 2017

Term 1

25 September – 1st December 2017

Term 2

8 January – 16 March 2018

Reading Week

12–16 February 2018

Term 3

16 April – 22 June 2018

Bank Holidays

7 May & 28 May 2018 

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