Graduate Studies

The M.F.A. in Art offered by SMU Meadows School of the Arts is a two-year program that prepares artists for careers in art. Students who earn the M.F.A. develop a substantial body of artwork and understand the relevant contexts within which artists and their works function. The degree is intended as an intensive period of focused study that culminates in the M.F.A. qualifying exhibition at the Pollock Gallery.

Full fellowships: SMU offers up to six full fellowships each year, supplemented by teaching assistantships. This generous bulwark of support is offered to aid students in the development of their work so that they can begin their careers unencumbered by tuition debt. Additional funds are available for materials and travel related to students’ creative research.

The M.F.A. program is interdisciplinary in that students are free to explore a wide range of materials, processes and histories. Each year the most competitive, ambitious and thoughtful artists are admitted regardless of medium. Facilities for and faculty expertise in ceramics, creative computation, drawing, installation, new media, painting, performance, photography, printmaking, sculpture, sound, and time-based media feature among the opportunities for students. The Division of Art embraces and celebrates human diversity in all its forms, including race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, sexual orientation or gender identity and expression.

In addition to faculty actively engaged in exhibition and research at the highest levels, SMU’s Division of Art hosts an ongoing series of lectures, open studios, panels and studio visits by artists, critics and curators. This series of events is a crucial part of the graduate and undergraduate curricula and provides a venue for graduate students and the Dallas community at large to engage with contemporary art.

Visiting Artists for 2018–19
Simonetta Moro, Nyugen Smith, Tony Cruz Pabón, Signé Pierce and Holly Walker.

Past Visiting Artists and Curators
Glenn Adamson, Magali Arriola, Ute Meta Bauer, Walead Beshty, Gregg Bordowitz, Tania Bruguera, Suzanna Coffee, David Diao, Ed Eberle, Nicole Eisenman, Theaster Gates, Renée Green, K8 Hardy, Ann Van Hoey, Jessica Jackson Hutchins, Alfredo Jaar, Guillermo Kuitca, Pablo Leon de La Barra, Melissa Miller, Ron Nagle, Thomas Nozkowski, Robyn O’Neil, Mariko Paterson, Paul Pfeiffer, R.H. Quaytman, Walid Raad, Franklin Sirmans, Michael Smith, Jenni Sorkin, A. L. Steiner and Betty Woodman.

Dallas continues to invest in the largest arts district in the country, located a few minutes from campus, in which the Meadows School plays a growing role. The Division of Art seeks artists for graduate studies who wish to participate in the diverse arts opportunities of Dallas-Fort Worth and the North Texas region.

SMU also offers the New York Colloquium, where students spend two weeks in early January visiting NYC museums and galleries. In some years, an intensive program is offered off campus in an international location or on the SMU satellite campus in Taos, N.M. These seminars are run by faculty along with visiting artists or scholars, and are engaged with the development and expansion of the boundaries of student vision.

Apply here: M.F.A. Art admission instructions | Meadows Graduate application

See profiles of current M.F.A. graduate students. See profiles of current Art faculty. 

Visits to campus are encouraged for all accepted students. We offer a tour of campus, a meeting with our outreach Teaching Assistant M.F.A. students and a Q&A with select faculty.

Prospective students are also able to visit the SMU program on the following dates:
December: End-of-semester M.F.A. reviews
April/March: M.F.A. exhibition
April: 2nd year M.F.A. oral exams

Candidates, please contact the Division of Art for exact dates: or call 214-768-2698.

Contact us

Questions about graduate studies admission can be directed to:

Meadows Admission Office