Tuesday, 03 August 2021 14:15

Students from all over the country will be able to receive grants to study the first International MA Program "Museum Studies" at the "Silk Road" International University of Tourism

In recent years, there has been an increase in the activity of contemporary art, including the launch of the Centre for Contemporary Arts in Tashkent in 2019, official participation of Uzbekistan in the 17th Venice Architecture Biennale in 2021 and the upcoming Venice Art Biennale in 2022. In addition, the future museum on the territory of the University in Samarkand will be dedicated to the Great Silk Road, from its inception to the present day.

Championing this new venture, His Excellency Mr. Aziz Abdukhakimov, Minister of Tourism and Sport and Rector of the “Silk Road” International University remarked: “The “Silk Road” International University is proud to offer new programs dedicated to advancing young arts professionals in the early stages of their careers. We see Uzbekistan as an important connector and supporter of burgeoning contemporary art and museums, creating an important bridge between Samarkand, Central Asia, and beyond. The collaboration between the University and the Foundation supports the future for young cultural leaders who will have an opportunity to learn from leading local and global art industry experts. Furthermore, with the forthcoming Silk Road Museum opening on the University campus’s grounds, students will have direct access art, exhibitions, and objects, which will further argument learning in an immersive academic environment.”

     Further, applauding this new project Saida Mirziyoyeva, the Deputy Chairman of the Council of the Art and Culture Development Foundation remarked: “As a longstanding trustee of the Foundation’s goals I am proud to see how Uzbek art and culture has flourished locally and internationally.  I am excited to see how this new MA in Museum Studies will support the next generation of cultural practitioners from Uzbekistan and neighboring nations preparing them for rich and fruitful cultural careers. We have attracted leading international specialists to the teaching staff. They developed a flexible educational program that is online and thus will provide an opportunity for students from different countries to consider the course. Today, it is important to work on the preservation of objects of historical and cultural heritage. I hope the program will help students to study the most important aspects of museology: the theoretical foundation, the history of museums around the world, the formation and development of the museum as a sociocultural institution, the study of the functions and research activities of museums. We hope to attract a wide pool of talented students and look forward to a successful pilot program.”

    The program will include a combination of core modules (14 weeks) and optional modules (6 weeks), as well as a two-month international round table for art professionals.

  Speaking about the program Gayane Umerova stated: “Supporting Uzbekistan’s new vision to realize this important program will set in motion regenerative knowledge for future generations of museum professionals and offers a pipeline to employment by providing the necessary academic and practical skills required.  The curriculum is being headed by our newly appointed expert consultant Sara Raza (Program Director), a global curator, educator, and writer, based in New York, who has a long-term commitment to art pedagogy, museum collecting and curatorial practices, with Jeffrey Bolton (Academic Advisor), noted art, commerce and law specialist, based in London.”

Further, commenting the guest Program Director Sara Raza added: “I am delighted to be working under the trust and vision of the esteemed colleagues of the Foundation and Silk Road International University, alongside academic advisor Jeffrey Boloten. Creating the foundational blueprint for this project is both personally and professionally rewarding, as it will allow us to train young professionals, who are tomorrow’s curators and museum leaders, set against the back- drop of the historically rich city of Samarkand.”

Admission criteria:

   Prospective students must have a bachelor's degree, speak English and have a notification of admission to the “MA Museum Studies” program at the “Silk Road” International University of Tourism in Samarkand. Despite the fact that the course is intended for students with knowledge in the field of art, the Foundation is open to students with different experiences, it is important to be interested in taking a master's course and a future career in museum institutions of the country.

Selection stages:

1. You can apply for participation in the grant program on the Foundation's website acdf.uz

  • Copies of bachelor's degree transcripts (certified translation into English)
    • One letter of recommendation (previous teacher, mentor, research supervisor or professional supervisor, letters from relatives are not accepted)
  • A 500-word motivation letter (reasons for applying for this course and future goals)

2. Interview of the commission with the participants who passed the second stage

Criteria for the selection of candidates:

  • the presence of a diploma of obtaining the first higher education;
  • knowledge of English (proficiency level B2-C2);
  • academic performance;
    • scientific and research works;
  • general erudition;
  • analytical skills;
  • organizational skills;
  • motivation for development;
    • social activity;
  • awareness of the importance and benefits of the chosen specialty and its role in the development of the sphere of culture and art in the country.

General conditions for candidates:

  • Participants cannot become winners of several grant programs at the same time;
  • The Foundation reserves the right to cancel the results of the competition at any stage, if false information is found in the documents provided by the candidate;
    • After receiving an educational degree (master's degree), within three months, the winner of the grant program is employed in institutions of the sphere of culture and art by the decision of the scholarship commission of the Foundation. The term of employment is not less than one year.

General schedule of the competition:

  • until 5.09.2021 — acceptance of applications for the grant program;
  • until 07.09.2021 — examination of applications of the first stage;
  • 07.09.2021-announcement of the results of the first stage;
  • 08.09.2021-interview of the commission with the participants who passed the second stage;
  • 09.09.2021-summing up the results of the competition;
  • 10.09.2021-announcement of the winners.

About the MA in Museum Studies Program

The “Silk Road” International University’s inaugural Museum Studies Masters is designed to provide graduate students and emerging professionals with a robust training in museum culture, exhibitions and commerce. Taught by leading local and global arts professionals including arts writers, curators, conservators, exhibition designers and administrative specialists in law, development and strategy this MA program will provide a wide-ranging overview to museums and arts organizations internationally.

About Sara Raza

  Sara Raza (Program Director) is an award winning art curator and writer specializing in global art and visual cultures from Central and Western Asia. She lives and works in New York City where she founded the curatorial studio Punk Orientalism and is the 2021-2022 Red Burns Fellow at the New York University’s ITP Masters Program and a member of the faculty at the School of Visual Arts for the Masters in Curatorial Practice. She was most recently the Guggenheim UBS MAP Curator for the Middle East and North Africa, where she organized the exhibition But a Storm Is Blowing from Paradise at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York (2016), which travelled to the Galleria d’Arte Moderna, Milan (2018).

   Raza has curated exhibitions and projects for international museums, biennials and festivals including the Rubin Museum of Art, New York,  Mathaf: Modern Arab Art Museum, Doha, Qatar; the MacKenzie Art Gallery, Saskatchewan, Canada; Maraya Art Center, Sharjah, the Tashkent Biennale, Uzbekistan; Rhizoma (Generation in Waiting) (collateral exhibition) 55th Venice Biennale; and the 3rd Baku Public Art Festival, Azerbaijan, among others. Formerly, she was the Head of Education and Public Programs at YARAT, Baku, Azerbaijan; Founding Curator at Alaan Art Space, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; and Curator of Public Programs at Tate Modern, London. Raza is the West and Central Asia Desk Editor for ArtAsiaPacific Magazine and she is the recipient of the 11th ArtTable New Leadership Award for Women in the Arts (2016) and holds a BA (hons) in English Literature and History of Art and a MA in 20th Century Art History and Theory both from Goldsmiths College, University of London, and pursued studies towards her PhD at the Royal College of Art, London.

About Jeffrey Bolton

  Jeffrey Boloten (Academic Advisor) is Program Leader for the leading Art and Business Program  at Sotheby’s Institute of Art (London). He is Co-Founder and Managing Director of ArtInsight Ltd., the education partner of art market research firm, ArtTactic. He was a director with several leading international publishers, including Penguin Books, and has held posts at the Tate and as General Manager of a London art college. Bolton is a frequent speaker and lecturer at international art fairs and conferences on topics including the global art, and art investment markets. He is a Founding Member of PAIAM, Professional Advisors to the International Art Market.. Bolton holds an MA, Arts Management, City University (UK); BComm, McGill University; LL.B, Osgoode Hall Law School (Canada).

About the Art and Culture Development Foundation

  The Art & Culture Development Foundation under the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Uzbekistan was established by the resolution of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan in 2017. The Foundation’s main objective is to stimulate a creative intercultural dialogue and integrate culture and art of Uzbekistan into the global art world and cultural space. The Foundation initiates and supports projects and activities in the visual arts, literature, theatre, music and choreography. It expands and strengthens a network of international and interstate cultural relations, promotes cooperation with international cultural organizations and charity foundations for culture and arts, provides all-round support to members of the art world and other cultural figures, draws international investments and grants and develops the culture of sponsorship in the country.   

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Samarkand city, Republic of Uzbekistan, 140104, 17, University boulevard.

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