Low-Residency MFA

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Flexibility and Community

The Low-Residency Master of Fine Arts (MFA) program is the ideal program for students who desire the community, support and rigor of a traditional MFA, but with a more flexible structure to fit their lives and schedules. Similar to PAFA’s traditional MFA, the Low-Residency program focuses on independent studio work and is interdisciplinary in nature, welcoming a wide range of approaches to art-making.

PAFA is a school that gives great weight to both ideas and how things are made, and all curricula are focused to help students develop their work materially and conceptually. The Low-Residency MFA gives students the tools to engage deeply and critically with making their work while thinking about their practice in relation to contemporary and historical art and ideas.

Program Structure

The Low-Res MFA consists of both on-site and off-site learning. The core of the program is three summer terms completed on the PAFA campus.  For these intensive, eight-week sessions, students have their own private studio and are engaged in independent work.  Individual studio research is complemented by seminar courses, regular visits with faculty, group critiques, and an outstanding roster of visiting artists. During the fall and spring terms, students are off-site, and supported by a vital online community with virtual studios, critic meetings and courses in art history, contemporary art, theory, writing and professional practices. 

Key to the summer sessions is PAFA’s location in the heart of Philadelphia. Seminars connect students with museums, galleries and artists’ studios. Philadelphia’s proximity to New York and Washington D.C. allows for day trips to see even more. The online component of the program ensures that students are always connected to their community of peers and faculty, and receive continual feedback and support for their work.


Matthew Deleget
David Dempewolf
Resident Critic
Michael Gallagher
Alexis Granwell
Adjunct Faculty
Kate Moran
Resident Critic
Kevin Richards
Interim Master of Fine Arts Chair; Professor