Vytautas Magnus University’s Faculty of Arts is a dynamic division of the university, which integrates areas of arts, humanities and social sciences, and is filled with creative energy and innovative ideas. It seeks to prepare contemporary artists, creative producers and innovative art mediators who would successfully integrate into job markets in Lithuania and abroad. Departments of Art History and Criticism, Theatre Studies and Contemporary Arts prepare Bachelors of Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities, as well as Masters of Theatre studies and performing arts management, art curators, experts of cultural heritage and creative industries. The Faculty has excellent infrastructure for studies and research: auditoriums and lecture rooms, art laboratories (photo, video, multimedia) and studios (theatre, fashion design, sound) which are fully equipped with the most modern hardware and software that meet international standards of creative industries. Lectures in the Faculty are delivered by famous artists and experts of Lithuanian art and creative industries.
The Faculty is the only academic institution in Lithuania which offers integrated approach towards arts, humanities and social sciences. The Faculty offers 4 Bachelor level programmes (“Art History, Criticism and Media”, “New Media Art”, “Creative industries”, “Music Production”), 4 Master level programmes (“Art Curatorship”, “Theatre Studies and Stage Arts Management”, “Cultural Heritage and Tourism”, “Creative Industries”) and 1 doctoral study programme in History and Theory of Art.
“Art History, Criticism and Media” programme prepares art critics and art historians who possess comprehensive knowledge of various arts (fine arts, architecture, theatre, music, cinema, dance, photography) and are capable of mediating different forms of art for various audiences. New interdisciplinary programmes are also available: “New Media Art” programme provides students with knowledge of different media (photography, video, audio arts, computer graphics, multimedia technology) and skills of personal and organizational and curatorship. The programme of “Creative Industries” innovatively integrates art, business and communication, and prepares creative producers and executives of creative enterprises. The “Music production” programme is unique in the region and aims at giving all necessary creative training to contemporary music producers, including everything they need in their successful professional career. This program is taught entirely in English.
The main focus of the research activities of the Faculty of Arts is the interdisciplinary approach towards the analysis of national and transnational dimensions of various creative practices within the framework of broader context of Central and Eastern Europe as well as Nordic-Baltic region. The researchers of Faculty are nationally and internationally recognized experts of different areas of art research (visual arts, architecture, heritage, theatre, dance, photography, film).
Collaboration and joint research projects with experts and researchers from other fields such as communication, history, philosophy, literature and philology foster both interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches of the Unit’s research. Inclusion of social partners, mainly art and cultural organizations, help in fostering knowledge exchange and valorisation activities.
Important marker of internationalisation is active participation of researchers of the Unit in the international research programs and scholarly networks, for example, HERA Board (Humanities in the European Research Area), JPICH Governing Board (Joint Programming Initiative on Cultural Heritage), COST Review Panel (European Cooperation in Science and Technology), ANTS Board, EASTAP Board, CHANCE Program Committee, etc.
The majority of the researchers are actively involved in the international associations, such as ICOMOS (International Council on Monuments and Sites), AICA (International Association of Art Critics), AABS (Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies), IFTR / FIRT (International Federation for Theatre Research), ASN (Association for Studies of Nationalities), ANTS (Association of Nordic Theatre Scholars), EASTAP (European Association for Theatre and Performance), IATC (International Association of Theatre Critics).
Competences of research team are also recognized by numerous invitations to serve in various expert capacities: committees and governing boards of research as well as professional organizations, editorial boards of national and international academic journals, working groups and advisory boards of state institutions, national and municipal agencies and organizations (Lithuanian Council for Culture, Research Council of Lithuania, Committee for the Lithuanian National Prize for Culture and Arts, Advisory Board of “Kaunas – European Capital of Culture 2022”, etc.). This also allows to maintain a direct relation to the major research policy as well as cultural developments.
Scientific output of the leading researchers of the Unit has been rewarded with various national prizes, including the most prestigious awards in Lithuania in the field of science and culture.
The researchers of the Unit are also active participants in public cultural life. They publish over 100 texts per year in popular and cultural media, reflecting on art exhibitions, theatre and dance performances, films and books as well as engage in polemics about relevant issues of art and culture, they curate exhibitions, produce artistic events and art projects, serving as mediators between research, art and society.
Effectively functioning doctoral study program attract young, gifted researchers, thus securing sustainable development as well as renewal of The Unit’s scientific potential.
Researchers are actively involved in the international and national research projects. Major projects include among others:
Centre of Excellence for Cultural and Creative Innovations in Lithuania (innocult) (Horizon 2020 – Research and Innovation Framework Programme [H2020-WIDESPREAD-04-2017-TeamingPhase1]) 2017-2018
EDUATOM “The Didactical Technology for the Development of Nuclear Educational Tourism in the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant (INPP) Region” (co-funded from the EU Structural Funds). 2018-2021 (Linara Dovydaitytė)
EU Joint Programming Initiative on Cultural Heritage and Global Change project “Nuclear Spaces: Communities, Materialities and Locations of Nuclear Cultural Heritage (NuSPACES), 2021-2024 (Linara Dovydaitytė)
COST Action CA18136 “The European Forum for Advanced Practices” (EFAP) 2019-2023 (Jurgita Staniškytė)
“European Open Design School for Sustainable Regional Development” (DeuS), Nr. 612653-EPP-1-IT-EPPKA2-SSA-P, Erasmus + Project, 2020-2021 (Jūratė Tutlytė)