The National Academy of Art was founded in 1896 as a State School of Drawing, on legislation suggested by three outstanding Bulgarian public figures, the artists Ivan Mrkvicka and Anton Mitov, and the historian Dr. Ivan Shishmanov. The buildings of the National Academy of Art house numerous lecture halls, studios, laboratories, workshops, a museum, a computer centre, and a library with two branches; administration premises, a gymnasium and cafes. The academy has nearly 1000 students in different profiles in visual arts, history of art and design. The academy also has 130 foreign students and 35 Bulgarian and foreign doctoral students. The National Academy of Art has two departments, of Visual Arts and of Applied Arts. The chairs in both departments are responsible for teaching and research, and for the development and implementation of the curricula in the following fields where students acquire professional university degrees of Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts.
In Fine Arts :
Painting: BA, MA
Mural Painting: BA, MA
Sculpture: BA, MA
Graphic Art: BA, MA
Book and Printed Graphic Design: BA, MA
Poster and Visual Communication BA, MA
History of Art MA only (a five-year course)
In Applied Arts:
Woodcarving BA, MA
Ceramics BA, MA
Stage Design BA, MA
Textile BA, MA
Metal BA, MA
Industrial Design BA, MA
3D (Spatial) Design BA, MA
Porcelain and Glass BA, MA
Design of Children’s Environment BA, MA
Fashion BA, MA
Restoration . MA only (a five-year course)
The curricula of all disciplines incorporate History of Art, Aesthetics, Philosophy, Drawing, Anatomy, Perspective, Foreign languages, Sports. The students willing to qualify as teachers, study the additional disciplines of Pedagogy, Applied experimental psychology of visual arts, Psychology, Mapping, Pedagogical practice and Methodology of visual arts (those are taught by members of the chairs of Art and Pedagogy, Drawing and Comprehensive disciplines). Each chair guarantees specializations and doctoral studies in all abovementioned subjects. Through its chairs, courses and curricula, the National Academy of Art aims at the best professional and comprehensive education of its students.
The academic year has a winter, and a summer term, both ending in examination periods. The winter term begins in September/October and ends in May. The exams take place approx. in the second half of January-beginning of February; as well as throughout June, with reprieve sessions in February and September.
BA degree can be obtained following a four-year course of study while MA requires 18 months (exception is made in the case of History of Art and Restoration that only offer MA courses, with a 5-year course of study).
Teaching at the Academy focuses on individual disciplines, with ECTS for each discipline calculated in number of hours per term or per academic year. The courses in each of the disciplines end with exams, the evaluation is done on the six-mark scale. Educational tasks for the students during their course of study, seminars, course diploma works, defence of diploma works and projects, alongside with the exams in theory of the subjects, form an integral and important part of the education.
University website: National Academy of Arts