Fine Art Foundation (Full Time or Part Time)



Image / Charlotte Taylor – Mixed Media, 2014 (Fine Art Foundation Graduate)

A proven route to get you onto your university course of choice.

The clue to the nature of this course is in the title. It is a foundation. We will provide you with some essential components, including skills, techniques, working habits and analytical tools, which will enable you to fulfil your potential, and embark on a future in the visual arts.

During this one-year programme, we will help you to discover which areas of art & design best suit your personality and abilities. We do this by providing a degree of personal tutorial support, and practical guidance which we believe is unequalled by any similar course anywhere in the UK. You will leave us with a comprehensive portfolio and all the necessary information to help launch you into further study and training.

The studios are located in central London, with excellent transport links. They also benefit from being five minutes walk from Tate Modern and the many other exciting cultural and recreational facilities of London’s South Bank.

Our Fine Art Foundation is also available as a Part Time option. For more details please refer to the Foundation Course Document 2017-2018 (Subject to Change)



Image / Nathaniel Kochan – Mixed Media, 2015 (Fine Art Foundation Graduate)

Course Leader
Lynn Dennison

Course Location
Mermaid Court, 165A Borough High Street, London, SE1 1HR

Course Length
1 Year (Full Time), 2 Years (Part Time)

Fees 2017/2018

Full Time (Fee Per Year): £5,065
Termly (incl. 3% surcharge) £1,739

Part Time (Fee Per Year): £3,250
Termly (incl. 3% surcharge) £1,116

Fees must be paid in advance and can be paid yearly or termly (the latter incurring a 3% surcharge).

Start Date
11th September 2017

Autumn Term 2017-2018
18th September – 1st December 2017
Half Term: 23rd October – 27th October 2017

Spring Term 2017-2018
8th January – 23rd March 2018
Half Term: 12th February – 16th February 2018

Summer Term 2017-2018
16th April – 22nd June 2018 (no half term)

Graduate Show
5 – 8 July 2018


Foundation Course Document 2017-2018 (Subject to Change)



Image / Danny Pagarani – Mixed Media, 2015 (Fine Art Foundation Graduate)

Autumn (September to December)
Students actively explore the range of ideas about what art might be and, consequently, what it means to be one kind of artist or another. We want you to become confident in your expressive abilities, and to discover the joy and power of experimentation in a wide range of media. Students cover four disciplines; Drawing, Painting, Installation and Sculpture, and Digital Media.

Spring  (January to March)
You will be given the opportunity to select modules that particularly appeal to you. You can either choose two, ten-week modules from the full range of ten-week components available on the Art Academy Diploma course, or select from the two Foundation-specific modules. There is a choice of 3D or 2D, and the modules combine a selection of shorter courses intended to give you a wider introduction to different media and techniques.

Summer (April to July)
You work towards your final exhibition, as well as selecting two final skills modules to complement and support the development of your work in the final term. Individual tutors and the Head of Foundation will constantly monitor your progress, and each module will be followed by a thorough critique and roundup session

3 days a week: get active tutorial support
2 days a week: gain hands-on skills
1 day a week: work on your personal project

Download the Foundation Course Document 2017-2018 (Subject to Change) for more information about modules, assignments and assessment criteria.

You will have access to the Foundation studio space during Academy hours (7.30am-9pm weekdays, and some weekends) for project work and self-directed study. We have built flexibility into the programme, allowing you work in or out of the premises on self-directed study on different days (some of our students need to work part-time), although you may complete this work elsewhere on other days if you wish.



The-Art-Academy-2015-07-09-0102POur Fine Art Foundation students have progressed to many top class universities including:

Slade School of Fine Art, BA Fine Art
Goldsmiths, BA Fine Art & History of Art

Glasgow School of Art, BA Fine Art
Chelsea College of Arts, BA Fine Art
Central St Martins, BA Fine Art, BA Culture, Criticism & Curation, BA Architecture: Space & Objects
University of Westminster, BA Architecture, BA Graphic Design
The Ruskin School of Art, Oxford University, BA Fine Art
London College of Communication, BA Photography
University of Brighton, BA Fine Art Painting
Manchester Metropolitan University, BA Fine Art

Some students also stay on and are accepted on to our Fine Art Diploma course.

‘A creative haven immersed in Central London allowing easy access to some of the capital’s most famous galleries.’ Amelia Fern 2015

‘The academy’s vibrant, upbeat atmosphere and vast diversity inspires creativity in a more accessible manner than larger corporate universities.’ Will Hopkins 2015

‘I was apprehensive about my limited fine art skills but was soon put at ease by the incredibly friendly and positive tutors.’ Christianna Mason 2014


If you don’t find the answer to your question here please contact us for further information:

What qualifications do I need to apply for the Foundation?
We don’t ask for any particular qualifications. The course is carefully structured in such a way that even students who have pursued no formal art studies can both take part in and benefit from it. The application and interview process will help determine whether the course is right for you.

Is the Foundation course only for students immediately planning to go on to Higher Education?
No. Although certain components are aimed at preparing students for further study, the majority of the course would benefit anyone who wants to explore a wide range of fine art disciplines and learn about life as an artist.

Can I specialise in just sculpture or painting?
The course is designed to cover a whole range of fine art disciplines, but you will have the possibility to steer your studies and projects in a particular direction and towards specific media, especially towards the end of the course when you may be developing specialisms.

How old must I be to apply for the Foundation course?
The only stipulation is that you must be 18 by the time you start on the course – we are happy to speak to and meet younger students looking forward to their fine art studies in the future.

Are scholarships, bursaries or student loans available for the Foundation course?
We do have a small number of bursaries available for the Fine Art Foundation, we can discuss these with you at interview or contact us for more information.
You will not be able to apply for Student Finance from the British government for this course, but the Academy can offer advice on possible sources of funding for students. Please contact us to discuss.

Do you take mature students for the Foundation course?
Yes, applications from mature students are welcomed.

What is the structure for paying fees for the Foundation course?
Fees can be paid yearly or termly – full details can be found on the ‘Fees’ pages of the website – but your first term of year must have been paid for by the time you start the course. A deposit is required for all students enrolling on the course.

Is the Foundation course accredited?
The course is focused on delivering a thoroughly useful programme suited to its students needs. Upon successful completion you will receive an in-house diploma (instead of a conventional accreditation), which attests your individual achievements. The Art Academy’s Foundation course is a well-recognised programme and our students are regularly accepted onto further study courses at top universities.






In order to apply for the Fine Art Foundation starting September 2017 please fill out our online application form.

Alternatively you can download a .pdf version and post it to us along with at least 5 images of your work.

On receiving your application, we will offer successful candidates an interview. The Art Academy’s Course Administrator will arrange a suitable time and date for interview with the Director of Academic Affairs. Interviews are based on the content and quality of the applicant’s portfolio, CV and application.

Application Deadline

The deadline for the initial stage of Fine Art Foundation applications for the 2017/18 term is January 31st 2017. Subject to places being available the second application deadline is 31st May 2017.

Applications received between these two dates will be considered on a case by case basis and may be offered an interview before the final application deadline.

Applications received after the 31st May will be placed on a waiting list and processed subject to places being available.


We do have a small number of bursaries available for the Fine Art Foundation, we can discuss these with you at interview or contact us for more information.

Visiting the Academy

Open Days

If you would like to visit the Academy and learn more about the programs of study on offer, you can come to one of our open days (click on the open days tab for more information).

Individual Visits

Alternatively, please contact us and we can arrange a personal tour and discussion about your course requirements. If you bring some examples of your work, it can help to determine what course might suit you best.

EU & International Applicants

We accept applications from all EU, EEA and Swiss citizens or those with an existing visa for the UK.


If you are asked to attend an interview you will need to bring a portfolio of work with you. Portfolios are accepted in any format that best suits your practice but should include the following.

10 pieces of original finished work, which show your technical ability in a range of media. Please bring photographs of 3d installation work or if some of your work is digital bring this on a device to show it, alternatively on a memory stick, Mac formatted.
2 examples of the development of a piece from the initial idea to completion, with relevant sketches, trials and experiments. This could be a course project book.
1 sketch book showing your own areas of interest or individual thought process
1 example of writing or critical study work that you have done

Application Results

Applicants will learn whether they have being successful within two weeks of interview.

We have to be select about the students that we accept due to the high level and quality of tuition we offer. Our decisions are based on the students’ application and commitment to their artwork rather than the quantity of previous work.


Open Days offer a valuable opportunity to visit the Academy, meet some of the staff and students and gain in-depth information on our courses, teaching and student life.

Where The Art Academy
Mermaid Court
165a Borough High Street
London SE1 1HR

When 2.30pm – (approx.) 4.30pm

Guests You are welcome to bring up to two guests with you. Please mention the number of guests in the booking form below.

Booking For individual reservations please fill in the online booking form below.

Schools If you wish to bring a group of school students to one of our Open Days please email us in advance to reserve places:

If you have any questions about our Open Days please contact us, via email at: