Craft Practices - Metalwork

FdA Historic Craft Practices - Metalwork

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FdA Historic Craft Practices - Metalwork
Duration: 2 academic years (each 36 weeks) full time

Register now for Open Day on Friday 6 December.
Find out about funding opportunities.

Develop well-rounded metalworking theory and skills that will enhance your employment prospects or allow you to continue your studies in higher education. Projects become more challenging as the course progresses and encompasses both silversmithing and blacksmithing. You will be encouraged to understand historic craft practice in order to place your own work in a broader context and gain a keen understanding of the time needed for a piece of work in a creative, problem solving environment.

You can expect

  • To develop excellent practical skills
  • To learn how material properties influence practice and making
  • To learn historic metalwork techniques
  • To learn from dedicated and experienced tutors who are practicing professionals and well-connected in the sector

Learning environment

  • Low student: tutor ratio
  • Workshop access 8.30am-10pm, 7 days a week
  • Interdisciplinary environment
  • Visits from practicing crafts-persons and specialists from the heritage and private sectors
  • Visits to museums and active links with heritage bodies
  • Work placements and work-related projects

Facilities

You will work in our well-equipped metals workshop with areas for photography, analysis, chemicals, hot work (casting, soldering, and welding) and a machine shop. Adjacent to the workshop is the newly-built forge to which you will have access. Collaboration with other conservation specialisms makes for a uniquely enriched learning environment. Shared facilities include:

The on-site Art and Conservation Library puts thousands of specialist books and journals within your reach and you can access specialist databases in the IT suite.

find out more about the facilities

Contact Hours

Teaching

You are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars, external trips and visits and workshop practicals. In addition, you have personal tutorials with your subject tutor.

At level 4 you typically have around 18-19 contact hours per week, typically consisting of:

  • 4-5 hours of lectures
  • 1 hour of seminars
  • 8 hours of supervised workshop practicals
  • 4 hours of external trips & visits (on average)
  • 1 hour of one-to-one meetings/tutorials

At level 5 you typically have around 16-17 contact hours per week, typically consisting of:

  • 3-4 hours of lectures
  • 1 hour of seminars
  • 7 hours of supervised workshop practicals
  • 4 hours of external trips and visits (on average)
  • 1 hour of one-to-one meetings/tutorials

Independent learning

When not attending lectures, seminars and workshop or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library and preparing coursework assignments and presentations.

Overall workload

Level 4: 53% of your time is spent in scheduled teaching and learning activity
Scheduled teaching and learning: 633 hours
Independent learning: 567 hours

Level 5: 50% of your time is spent in scheduled teaching and learning activity
Scheduled teaching and learning: 600 hours
Independent learning: 600 hours

Programme Structure Year 1

Programme Structure Year 2

Entry requirements

UCAS tariff points: 120 Completion of a level 3 qualification, for example: A-Levels, BTEC or Foundation Diploma in Art and Design.

Applicants can be considered if they can provide evidence of prior learning with an appropriate portfolio of work. You will be invited to a Portfolio interview.

International applicants should provide a digital portfolio, evidence of English language ability to Level B2 (IELTS 6.0), as well as equivalent level 3 qualifications.

Fees

Course fees are the same for UK and international students

  • £4,230 per term (£12,690 per year)

Included is mandatory study trip costs of £400, which typically includes tailored visits to collections/exhibitions of specific interest to the programme of study.

Additional costs

Lunch, accommodation and other living expenses are additional. Find out more

Student scholarships and bursaries

Scholarship and bursary awards are available for students who have accepted an offer to study at West Dean College of Arts and Conservation. Applicants for a scholarship award should show outstanding potential and a commitment to their studies and future career in their chosen subject. Applicants for a bursary award are required to demonstrate financial need.

 

Find out more about funding opportunities

Careers

Graduates have gone on to work in the sector, both as employees and self-employed, to pursue their studies in higher education, and some have established a high profile for their own designs and craftsmanship. In 2018, 75% of students were in work or study six months after graduation.

Student perspective

"There were probably three main reasons I chose West Dean College of Arts and Conservation. Firstly, the small class sizes, which offer a high degree of personal tuition. Secondly, the unparalleled access to facilities including the forge, hot work and chemicals areas, which because of the small class sizes you get plenty of time to use. Thirdly is the location - it is unique!

One of the highlights of the course so far has been a project to make a pewter box. Part of the brief was that before construction the box we also had to make the tools to do the repoussé. It allowed us to learn and experience the whole process, from design and methodology to realisation of the final object. I also found great satisfaction from the integrity of hand-making the tools and ensuring they were specialised to create the desired finish."

Mary, metalwork student

Tutors

Grant McCaig

Grant McCaig is an internationally recognised Silversmith and educator. His work is in several major collections including National Museums of Scotland, the Goldsmiths' Company, Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery and Aberdeen Art Gallery. He has taught in Japan and Colombia, is a selector for Cockpit Arts and mentor for the Crafts Council.

Dr Nicholas Pyall

Subject Leader FdA Historic Craft Practices

Nick specialises in instruments inspired by Viennese guitars of the early and mid-nineteenth century, including those with extra bass strings, and the mid-twentieth-century guitars of the North American 'golden era' of acoustic guitar making. In recent years his passion has led to him studying the instrument's development and societal history.

Program advisors

Hazel Newey: former Head of Conservation at the Science Museum
Richard Rogers: Richard Rogers Conservation
Alistair Dickenson: specialist in precious metalwork

How to apply

If you are interested in applying for this course or would like further information please contact admissions either by enquiring online or calling the number below. To make your application you will need to download and fill out our application form.

Open Day - register today

Come and find out what makes West Dean College of Arts and Conservation such an amazing place to study. Explore the studios, take a tour with students, discuss your study options, and find out about funding at our next Open Day on:

Friday 6 December 2019

Register your place and find out more