Academy of Fine Arts

in Warsaw

About Faculty of Painting

The tradition of the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw dates back to the times of King Stanisław August Poniatowski and Atelier at the Royal Castle, led by Marcello Bacciarelli. The present-day Academy has combined the tradition of the Warsaw School of Fine Arts, established in 1904, and the Municipal School of Decorative Art and Painting. The Faculty of Painting is the oldest faculty of the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. It also has the greatest historic continuity: it has operated as an independent organisational unit for more than 65 years. The enormity of historical and the modern-day achievement of the Faculty was presented during a series of exhibitions related to 60th anniversary of the Faculty of Painting, held in 2008.

Currently, the Faculty offers five-year one-cycle Master's degree programme and third-cycle (doctoral) programme, and has authority to award doctoral and post-doctoral degrees.

The guiding curricular principle of the Faculty of Painting is the concept, developed over years, of maintaining harmonious balance between the tradition of easel painting and contemporary trends in art. A graduate of the Faculty of Painting is a contemporary painter, creator and artist; on the one hand, fully familiar with the traditional technique, with historical knowledge concerning painting, and art in general, on the other, capable of facing the challenges of modernity and using means of expression of the 21st century. They also have knowledge and competence in the field of drawing, composition of planes and solids, large-format wall painting, artistic textiles, sculpture, selected techniques of printmaking, computer graphics, and visual activities in public space. A wide range of competences in these areas makes the graduate of the Faculty of Painting well equipped to manage in the difficult market of contemporary art competition. Specifically, to meet the riskiest challenges, these associated with creative process, or creation of new entities, new phenomena in the field of fine arts.

Since 2013 the Faculty of Painting has offered a four-year third-cycle (Doctoral degree) programme. These studies are conducted in individualised mode, under research and artistic supervision of the Professor selected by the student. Doctoral studies provide the graduate with:

  • unique knowledge and competence in the field of painting,
  • mastered artistic technique,
  • risk-taking skills in terms of artistic activity,
  • ability of independent recognition and identification of artistic and research issues and risk degree in pursuit of unhampered and fully autonomous artistic decisions,
  • modern creative methods in the field of painting, as evidenced by the example of students working in digital painting and developing aspiring art projects in public space.

Thence the Faculty of Painting has manifested the attitude combining enormously rich tradition of easel painting with application of modern technologies and artistic strategies in the creative process. Development of the Faculty consists in advancement of the research and teaching staff, growth of exhibition activity, according to the principle that the creative process of a painter has to be crowned with an exhibition, no matter if it is a student, doctoral student or professor.

The Faculty implements research programmes, grants and scholarships. Also Enriching of the offer of the Faculty curriculum is important; it is carried out primarily in a visiting professors' studio system, consistently maintained at the Faculty for years. The Faculty responds to modern creative methods in the field of painting, as evidenced by example of students working in digital painting and developing aspiring art projects in public space.



The curriculum of the major of painting, one-cycle five-year Master's degree studies at the Faculty of Painting of the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, provides students with professional training to use painting techniques and acquire knowledge and experience necessary for artistic creation.

Objectives of the training

  • Basic courses and ones supporting artistic technique (specialisation tracks available at the Faculty of Painting and other faculties of the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw) are geared towards training creativity and implementation of artistic concepts.
  • Among objectives of training there is also refining student's ability to enter a discussion, enunciate opinions clearly and elaborate on assignments and artistic issues, as well phenomena not related to the world of art.
  • Major-specific courses are supposed to develop knowledge and familiarity with new technical and creative solutions, to prepare the future graduate to use painting technique together with modern technical solutions, in order to boost free expression of artistic concepts.
  • The curricula prepare graduates of the Faculty of Painting for professional, creative pursuit of independent artistic activity. They provide them with knowledge and competencies to fulfil social needs; allow them initiate and participate in artistic projects within culture in a broad sense.

Content of the training

  • Presenting opportunities provided by painting media.
  • Developing the habit of painting interpretation based on perception of the surroundings and artistic imagination.
  • Analysis of historical and contemporary painting achievement in terms of content and form.
  • Finding means of expression to put artistic ideas into life, from analysis to synthesis.
  • Design and implementation of issues in related fields - classic and experimental textiles, technique and technology of easel and mural painting, visual structures, issues of art in public space - supporting the painting technique in its broad sense.

Forms of training

  • Study practice based on work from nature.
  • Workshops - practice aimed at improving painting technique based on old and modern techniques.
  • Creation and imagination activities as the main method of advancing creativity (student develops an appropriate rhythm and mode of artistic work within the framework of the Faculty).
  • Individual projects - enhancing creative initiative of the student - including bold and risky artistic projects.
  • Group projects - themed trips, plein airs, film screenings, themed exhibitions on campus and beyond
  • Discussion and didactic dialogue. Presentation of pieces and assignments by the student. Confrontation of views and attitudes of students with those of teachers, and well-known figures from the world of culture, from the outside of the Academy.
  • Master's seminar - discussion, elaboration and adjustment of the subject and implementation of the degree candidate's piece, and adjustment to exhibition conditions.