Vocational Training

les Keimpe van der Kooi 3The Vocational Course is a three-year course, comparable to a bachelor’s degree. The main focus is on the transfer of professional knowledge, know-how and craftsmanship. For more information on teaching materials, schedule and teachers, you can download the curriculum here.

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Admission to the Vocational Course is only possible after passing the entry exam, that tests both talent and skill. Applying for the course is therefore the same as registration for the exam. Registration is possible up to 3 weeks before the exam. After your registration you will receive some home assignments by mail plus the date, place and time of the entry exam.

The admittance committee consists of 4 teachers from the first and second year Vocational Course. The exam consists of a 2 hour session of figure drawing. Next, the home-assignments and portfolio shall be examined and discussed personally. We use a scoring system – the person with the highest score will be admitted first. Scores lower than B will not be admitted.

The entry exams for the year 2016-2017 will take place on June 2016.


There is a fixed schedule of 4 practical lessons of 2,5 hours and 1 theory lesson of 1,5 hour a week on two consecutive days. So, if you need to travel in order to attend the classes, you only need to spend the night in Groningen once a week. The dates are fixed, so you can make arrangements with your work well in advance, if necessary. Some classes involve home assignments.

Optional classes

Apart from the fixed lessons it is possible to extend the programme by taking optional classes. Staff assistance is only partly available during these lessons:

There is also opportunity to work by yourself – without staff assistance – in one of the workshops when there are no lessons (especially the sculpture and printmaking workshops).

Foto: Xandra DondersClasses

1st year

You spend most of the First year drawing, mainly focussing on on basic techniques and image set-up with special attention to form, tonality and perspective. Art history and an introduction to printmaking (etching, woodcutting, lithography) are also part of the programme. You will be taught the basic principles of composition. You will learn and practice the drawing techniques. For form study and anatomy we emphasize on figure drawing classes. The principles of pictorial space on a two-dimensional surface, you will learn by mastering techniques, such as the use of clair obscure, and atmospheric and linear perspective.

Final assignment first year

Draw a tonal light-dark study of the human figure in an interior with focus on composition, proportions and perspective.

2nd year

In the second year you deepen the knowledge of materials, painting techniques and painting with a limited palette. Art history continues with the Renaissance up to present times.

Attainment targets second year

paint a nude human figure with a limited palette in a space with correct perspective. Paint a still-life from observation, consisting of several objects. In both assignments emphasis is placed on composition, shape relationships, pictorial space and textural expression.

3rd year

During the third academic year colour will be added to the programme, using various techniques and approaches such as watercolour technique, pastel, accuracy and oil painting. Art appreciation will take the place of art history in the programme.

Attainment targets third year

You must be able to paint a compositionwise complete picture of a nude in a perspectively correct space, painted with an extended palette.  Furthermore you must produce a watercolour painting. You pay attention to:

  • composition
  • shape relationships
  • human anatomy
  • construction
  • pictorial space
  • textural expression
Optional classes (3rd year and onwards)

You can enrol in several optional classes ranging from specialisations such as portrait painting, realistic painting, plaster cast drawing and printmaking with light staff assistance, to autonomous figure studies and free hours in the sculpture and printmaking workshops.

Special weeks

During the week following fall break, excursions and a special workweek are scheduled (the latter on Tenerife or in Italy).

Open Days will take place during the week before spring break, with activities on both locations (A-Kerkhof and Paradijsvogelstraat) and an exhibition of artworks from students of different years at Pictura, St. Walburgstraat.

During the week before the vacation in May tutors and/or invited artist will organize Master classes and Land Art.

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