Jul 20, 2024  
2023-2024 University Catalog 
2023-2024 University Catalog

Book Arts & Printmaking, MFA

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Lori Spencer, Program Director
(215) 717-6160



Learn more and apply to the Book Arts & Printmaking program.


The MFA in Book Arts & Printmaking is a highly selective professional graduate program that imparts a tradition of artistic and academic excellence through a distinctive pedagogical lens individually tailored to each student’s interests and experience. Our unparalleled program offers students a profound conceptual and technical experience as presented through an intense, interactive and rigorous studio environment. The breadth and depth of possibilities exploring the art of the book, printmaking, and the narrative are enormous and complex. The program encourages students to cultivate a hybrid methodology among the disciplines of printmaking, papermaking, bookbinding and letterpress printing - exploring text as well as image, the temporal as well as the spatial, the three-dimensional as well as the two-dimensional and the traditional as well as the experimental. Courses in the first year intersect, reflecting the integration of skills and concepts, integral to book arts and printmedia. The second year concentrates on the MFA Thesis Exhibition, under the supervision of an advisory committee. Students frequently choose to use their elective credits for internships in professional laboratories and organizations and are welcome as interns in many prestigious conservation labs.

Program Objectives

Upon successful completion of the program the student and their work will demonstrate:

  • Students demonstrate independent, creative problem solving and original thinking through the development of a distinct and personal approach to art making informed by contemporary issues and historical precedents. Students will possess the ability to embrace and integrate the historical with the contemporary in their works of art.
  • Students demonstrate critical, conceptual and technical development through research and analysis, applying readings, theories and methodologies toward the production of critically informed artworks. Editions in print, paper and book created by students exhibit technical and conceptual intention.
  • Students effectively communicate, orally and in writing, the thoughts behind their choices and decisions concerning content and strategies in order to develop professional skills required to be a successful practicing artist and entrepreneur.
  • Students demonstrate an awareness that craft/content/format are of equal importance. Students will demonstrate proficiency in traditional and experimental techniques and processes within the disciplines of printmaking, book binding, papermaking and digital printmaking, along with high levels of craftsmanship in skill and technique, including a deep understanding of materials and processes.
  • Students demonstrate knowledge in the history of their discipline and an understanding of how their work relates to that history. Upon successful completion of the program, the student and their work will demonstrate knowledge of the historical and contemporary precedence of the disciplines in order to more fully realize a contemporary visual voice.

Program Requirements (60 credits)

Required Courses (54 credits)

General Electives (6 credits)

  • Complete 6 credits. This requirement is satisfied by 500, 600, or 700 level courses.

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