Contemporary photography

Students of the «Contemporary Photography» program will be trained by well-known photo artists, receive the knowledge and skills necessary for a modern professional, and work on copyright projects.

Students of this program gain knowledge and practical skills that are necessary to the contemporary photo artist. The program includes project work as well as a set of courses in the humanities, including advanced courses in theory and history of art.

Studio work, mastering of the contemporary photographic apparatuses and digital program toolkit is combined with the diving into the cultural and historical context of relevant tendencies and challenges that are faced by the contemporary photographer.

The range of the application of photography is universal; it can be used as an applied instrument of the passing of information as well as an independent and extremeley sophisticated artistic tool, and in the joining of other, related or on the countrary — unrelated media. This is why for the a full-fledged photography practice a good understanding of the cultural tradition and the ability to experiment is necessary, as well as a confident mastery of the newest technologies and visual language.


Vladimir Levashov

Curator of the «Contemporary photography» program

Oleg Aronson

«Theory and philosophy of contemporary art» professor

Aleksandra Volodina
Aleksandra Volodina

Professor of «Theory and philosophy of contemporary art»

Daria Pyrkina
Daria Pyrkina

Professor of «History and theory of art»

Andrey Sarab’yanov

«History and thoery of art» professor

Natalya Smolyanskaya
Natalya Smolyanskaya

Professor of «Theory and philiosophy of contemporary art»

Educational programme

Year One — Basics

The students go through a basic course in photography, where they learn to construct a composition, to work with color and to use the modern digital toolkit. In addition, the students will gain a systematic knowledge of contemporary art and create their own projects.

Year Two — Original projects

The students gain teh skills and competencies that are necessary for the creation of their own creative message in the field of contemporary art. Over the course of the year, they work on two original and one curatorial project.

The students, through practice, learn the techniques and maneuvres of working with an image, are introduced to the basics of video art, and produce digital products. During the second part of the year, the students defend their personal exhibitional project that includes a conception, a exposition and event organization plans, as well as an advertisement campaign. Simultaneously, they learn theory and philosophy of contemporary art, the basics of curating and art-criticism.

Year Three — Workshops

The students get an opportunity to work with the masters of photography andthe representitives of related disciplines.

Year Four — Graduation project

During the school year, every student work on the qualifying for graduation project.

The first step is the approval of the theme of the project- it should be characterized by its relevance. Following is the creation of a visual research (an original publication on the theme of the project), and the finishing step is the student's realization of the original creative project (for example, an artwork, a curatorial exhibition project, a short film) that is defended as a graduation project.

4 years
Full time program
75 commercial spots
590 000 rub
RUS program taught in Russian

About the program

  • State accreditation
  • The program is led by: Faculty of Communications, Media, and Design
  • Direction 50.03.02 «Fine Arts»
  • Training office


  • 109028 Moscow, st. Malaya Pionerskaya, 12
  • +7 (495) 621 87 11
  • design@hse.ru

Future career routes

About HSE

40 300
7 000
professors and researchers
educational programmes

HSE ART AND DESIGN SCHOOL is a subdivision of the Higher School of Economics National Research University, one of the leading universities in Russia, a participant of the majority of authoritative international educational ratings (QS, ARWU, Times Higher Education, U.S. News Best Global Universities Subject).

It’s not only a huge scientific laboratory, but a representative expert platform as well: the HSE personnel are actively involved in the key expert discussions, they are members of many collegiate and consultative bodies and are opinion leaders of the most important issues in the sphere of education, social policy, healthcare, demography, labor market, transport, public administration, and technological development.