I am a three times Archibald Prize finalist, Australia's most important art prize, and have recently been offered a place on a Master of Fine Arts degree program at the New York Academy of Art. This is an opportunity to join one of the most outstanding and creative student bodies in the world and comes in recognition of academic and personal achievements. Based on my application, the Academy also offered me an Academy Scholar Merit Award in the amount of $10,000 for my first year of study.
Students must demonstrate sufficient income sources to meet one academic year's expenses. Currently the 2013-14 academic year cost (assessed by New York Academy of Art Admissions), which includes living expenses for twelve months in addition to tuition and fees, is $63,000 for entering students and $62,100 for returning 2nd year students. In order to accept my place on the MFA course I therefore need to raise funding of $53,000 for the first year by the 1sy July 2014 ($63,000-$10,000 Merit Scholarship award and $62,100 for the second year of study).
Securing funding is critical in enabling me to pursue the MFA. The funds will be used for the first years MFA tuition fees, accommodation and art materials. I will seek additional funding for the second year of the MFA at later date.
The Masters of Fine Art at the New York Academy of Art will provide me the opportunity to study theory as well as academic painting techniques, integrating a conceptually aware practice with representational excellence. The New York Academy of Art is one of the very few institutions in the world (if not the only institution) where I can learn the skills to the required level with an unlimited potential for interdisciplinary and multi medium work in the longer term.
To have a strong awareness of contemporary art and a conceptual grounding combined with “Old Masters” level academic technique is exceedingly rare but I think something that is gradually increasing. I see myself as one of a fairly few number of artists at a 'tipping' point in the current art world. As such, Australia will hugely benefit from having artists returning from studies in New York and elsewhere with such a rare set of uniquely combined contemporary creative skills. I believe it presents an extremely exciting proposition. The Masters of Fine Art at the New York Academy of Art along with the connections and experience gained by studying alongside some of the world's brightest current and future artists will provide me with the ability to self-teach far beyond the scope of the MFA and anything possible from study in Australia alone.
I plan to re-establish my practice on returning to Australia with a view to creating an increasingly broader and conceptually aware body of work that will be split down into groups for exhibitions and art fairs and be presented in themes based on my studies in New York. I will also seek additional representation with renowned international galleries as soon as the first group of works is complete. Ultimately I hope to travel worldwide on a regular basis in support of my practice on an international scale.
Thank you very much for your consideration.