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Best Art and Design Schools in the World

01.02.2021
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Top Arts Schools In The World

Making the decision to head off to art and design schools can be difficult for many. Whether it’s a lack of support from family and friends or you are fearful of an unstable and unpredictable future, taking this step can feel like a leap of faith. I recently graduated from an art school myself with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. When I tell you it was the hardest four years of my life I truly mean it.

However, regardless of the many bumps in the road, I do not regret a single moment spent mastering my craft, and wouldn’t change a thing. So, although art and design are different from dance, I do have experience in the world of art within an education system. In fact, two of the best art schools in the world that I will be talking about later on are two schools I spent time studying at. So regardless of what you’re choosing to study, I have insights into what your overall experience may pan out to be. Before getting into the best art and design schools, I want to take a moment to tell you how happy I am that you are here.

Your search for the best schools is the first step to following your dreams. I want you to know that I believe in you and hope you never give up on being an artist. The world has always and will always need art. Be one of the artists who fulfills this need. Follow your dreams. Okay, let’s get into the schools of art and design already.

Amsterdamse Hogeschool Voor De Kunsten

best art schools in the world

The first school I want to introduce to you today is Amsterdamse Hogeschool Voor De Kunsten, also known as Amsterdam School Of The Arts or AHK. This school is located in Amsterdam as its name suggests. As I mentioned earlier, I have studied at two of the schools we will be talking about, well this is one of them.  In the third year of my studies, I had the pleasure to spend my fall semester abroad, dancing in Amsterdam.  When I say this is one of the best art schools in Europe, I truly mean it.  This school has six different academies resting in six different locations:

  1. Breitner Academy
    • Visual arts, dutch speaking only
  2. Academy of Architecture
    • Master architecture, master urbanism, master landscape architecture
  3. Conservatorium van Amsterdam
    • Music
  4. Netherlands Film Academy
    • Bachelor and Master film programs
  5. Reinwardt Academy
    • Master applied museum and heritage studies
  6. Academy of Theatre and Dance
    • Wide variety of studies in the field of theatre and dance

This is not only one of the best schools for the arts, but it’s located in one of the best cities in the world. As an artist, being in Amsterdam was continuously fulfilling. I was constantly inspired by all of my surroundings which in turn made me inspired to create new works. The culture and energy that fills the air in Amsterdam are truly something you must experience if you ever get the chance.

OCAD University

top arts schools in the world

The next school we will be talking about is one of the best design schools in the world, at least from what I have heard. OCAD University, or Ontario College of Art and Design University, is located in Toronto, Ontario. OCAD’s vision is to answer the never-ending questions of our present time through art, design, social sciences, humanities, and sciences. OCAD University is one of the top design schools because of its large variety of minors. Some being:

  • Art and Public Spaces
  • Art and Social Change
  • Communication Design
  • Drawing and Painting
  • Furniture Design
  • Gender and Sexuality Studies
  • Indigenous Visual Culture
  • Photography
  • Sustainability
  • Wearable Technology

Some of these minors may sound familiar, whereas some are original and unique. That’s what I love about this school. OCAD may introduce you to a field of study you never knew existed.  OCAD opens your mind to seeing art within all aspects of life. One of the many things I love about art and design is that it truly is all around us at all times. Our world, as we know it, would cease to exist without art and design. It is essential. It is necessary.

University of the Arts London

best schools for arts

It’s time to talk about one of the best art schools in the UK, the University of the Arts London, also known as UAL. UAL has nine different branches of colleges that are all unique in their own way. The colleges are:

  1. Camberwell College Of Arts
    • All about individuality
  2. Central Saint Martins
    • Top art and design school
  3. Chelsea College of Arts
    • Explorations on global, cultural, political, and social issues
  4. London College of Communication
    • Design, Media, and Screen
  5. London College of Fashion
    • Leading the world with fashion design, media, and business education
  6. Wimbledon College of Arts
    • Teaching performers to become experimental and bold
  7. UAL Creative Computing Institute
    • Discovering computer science and creative practice
  8. UAL Social Design Institute
    • Uses research to change how designers design
  9. UAL Decolonizing Arts Institute
    • Working towards social, cultural, and institutional change

If any of these colleges under the umbrella of the University of the Arts London sound the slightest bit interesting to you, I recommend checking them out.

SUNY Purchase College

top ranked art schools

The last school I am going to talk to you about today is the one I have called home for four years. SUNY Purchase College is located in Purchase, New York. One forty-five-minute train rides north out of Manhattan and you will find yourself in Purchase, New York. So why is SUNY Purchase College is one of the best art schools in the US? Well, the programs they offer are amazing and the professors have so much information to provide. Here are some of the Art and Design courses that SUNY Purchase College has to offer:

  • Graphic Design
  • Painting/Drawing
  • Photography
  • Printmaking
  • Sculpture
  • Visual Arts

Although I studied dance for my time at SUNY Purchase College, I spent some time with sculpture majors and took a photography class myself. Not only are the classes at this school reason enough for it to be one of the top design schools in the world, but the people who attend this school are full of creativity. I found myself inspired daily and made a lot of lifelong friends. I really do recommend checking out this school as I would go as far as to say if we’re talking about the United States, it is one of the best art schools in the country.

Follow Your Dreams

I hope after learning about the top-ranked art schools you are feeling inspired and eager to continue on your path of art. Being an artist can be hard, but the fulfillment it brings is worth every ounce of effort. Who knows, maybe you will find yourself at the top art school in the world. You won’t know unless you try.

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