Whitecliffe College of Art and Design
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“Whitecliffe opened a whole new world for me. I started art school with a limited vision of what I would be doing when I finished, but now I feel like the possibilities are endless.” – Tanya Martusheff, former Fine Arts student at Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design

A distinguished creative and tertiary institution located in Auckland, New Zealand, Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design provides life-transforming educational experiences in arts and design through teaching and research, educating students to shape culture through the practice and critical study of the arts.

Since 2011, the school has consistently been awarded the Eden Arts Art Schools Award, earning a name as the top creative school in Auckland, and cementing its position as a global force in arts and design education.

Whitecliffe developed its core values on excellence, innovation and commitment to diversity through the work of its dedicated faculty, students, alumni and staff. The school’s commitment to a wide range of media, processes and methodologies supports the belief that its graduates become leaders in their fields thanks to a critical combination of making and thinking. Through rigorous critique, intelligent debate and mutual respect, graduates gain crucial lifelong skills to help them shape communities, as well as grow their careers.

Whitecliffe College of Art and Design

Image courtesy of Whitecliffe College of Art and Design

On top of honing their creativity and refining their ideas, students learn the importance of critical thinking, research, communication and presentation skills – traits that are increasingly sought-after in a competitive working world. Here, a diverse population of nearly 480 students discover contemporary art and design through vibrant exhibitions, international guest speakers and invaluable internship opportunities with industry pioneers.

“I chose Whitecliffe because I knew I could develop as an artist in the supportive environment they provided,” says Tanya Martusheff, 2015 Highly Commended Winner of the Eden Arts Art Schools Award.

Since graduating, Martusheff has continued sharpening her skills through a number of successful exhibitions. She is attached to an Auckland-based not-for-profit organisation that works for and supports the visual arts sector in New Zealand. She says her future goals are to “work on big projects and exhibit internationally. I would also like to write about art. In art school, I found that written expression can be just as rewarding as visual expression.”

This award-winning, specialist institution offers a stimulating learning environment, including individual studio spaces for our students. A low student-teacher ratio grants access to constant support, while programmes from certificate, to undergraduate, to postgraduate and beyond, urge all students to take risks, while simultaneously encouraging critical and creative thought.

Image courtesy of Whitecliffe College of Art and Design

The comprehensive, 18-week Certificate in Arts and Design and Certificate in Digital Media and Design are specifically-tailored to meet the needs of degree level study, giving students the tools needed to thrive in higher education and throughout later life. The Bachelor of Fine Arts covers four diverse majors – Fine Arts, Photo Media, Fashion and Graphic Design – allowing students to refine ideas, research and their technical prowess, regardless of where their creative passions lie.

While Whitecliffe’s BFA degrees are largely studio-based, they also offer papers in Business Studies, Management, Public Relations and Arts Marketing to capitalise on the acquisition of transferrable expertise.

By providing a solid academic and creative foundation, this allows the school to produce industry leaders and creative thinkers worldwide.

The school’s postgraduate portfolio represents another asset, with Diplomas in Arts Management and Arts Therapy, and Masters degrees that cover Fine Arts, Arts Management and Arts Therapy. Here, students expand their research capabilities, covering the breadth and depth of their respective disciplines as they learn from the industry’s best. But classes are not just for refining students’ creative ambitions; they are also about instilling a respected professional portfolio that could see them through a career in virtually any sector, anywhere around the globe.


As a testament to the school’s success in producing powerful graduates who impact the creative world, in February this year, a Whitecliffe Master of Fine Arts (MFA) graduate and lecturer Rose Meyer took home the top prize at New Zealand’s 2017 Painting and Printmaking Awards. On top of receiving international recognition, Meyer’s work, entitled Journey; from pen to print to paint, earned her a NZ$20,000 prize sponsored by the Philip Vela Family Trust.

“My artwork… started its life as a drawing made by placing a wheeled pen into a box containing paper. The box was then sent to a destination through the mail. The resulting marks record the incidental movements of its travel, a literal translation of the space and time of its journey, documentation of its own creation,” she explains. “The lines made by this process then undertook a second journey through process and media; a translation through the digital, from photograph to vector, from vector to vinyl cut, finally resting as painting.”

“Winning such a large sum will lead to massive opportunities,” Meyer concludes. “I need to think very carefully about how I could invest it in furthering my practice and pushing my work into new territories.”

Competitions like these are just the start of the abundant opportunities on offer at Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design.

Through its first-rate teaching and programmes and unparalleled student environment, the institution inspires students to realize their innate creativity.

For this very reason, Whitecliffe graduates are articulate and creative thinkers, equipped with the skill and industry-standard proficiencies needed to lead within an interconnected world. Here, students are known to produce stunning visual expressions of their personal ideas, while reshaping everything we know about contemporary creative art and culture.

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