Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (NSCAD) University
NSCAD University is wrapped in history – the distinctive stone, iron, concrete and brick facades of their Fountain Campus are a daily reminder that they are one of Canada’s oldest independent cultural institutions. By 1957, post-war growth prompted the college’s next move to a large four-story church hall on Coburg Road near Dalhousie University, which, in 1968, saw a six-story expansion for studios and galleries.
One of Canada’s oldest independent cultural institutions, NSCAD University continues to be regarded as a principal centre for education and research in visual culture in North America. Part of their appeal is the ever-present relationship of the old to the new, and their convenient location in the heart of downtown Halifax’s waterfront district. Behind the Victorian facades of their main campus and the Academy Building – both open 24 hours a day, seven days a week – students create some of the most cutting-edge images and objects being made anywhere on the continent. After an experimental foundation year, students gradually focus in order to become specialists in some aspect of art, craft, design or historical and critical studies. They are educated to think critically, to balance academic issues with practical concerns in the studio, and to explore how the visual arts give meaning to both individual and community life. Their graduates go on to join the ranks of the most interesting and successful artists of their generations. As the university embraces the new century, it is building on the strengths of its history, maintaining and intensifying traditional arts and crafts while capitalizing on the many new technologies shaping the world and human interaction. A significant expansion currently underway will soon make NSCAD Canada’s largest centre for graduate programs in the visual arts. They believe the next phase of modernity in the visual arts has begun, and it is their full intention to play a role in its formation. Things are happening behind those Victorian facades.
NSCAD University has a long history of working with international artists, crafts persons and designers because they understand the value in cultural diversity. They welcome students from all over the world to study at NSCAD and provide study abroad opportunities for their full time students as well. The universal language of art, craft and design is spoken at NSCAD and they invite you to join them.
NSCAD occupies three unique campuses in downtown Halifax: 200,000 square feet of heritage space on two sites in the heart of downtown Halifax, and 70,000 square feet at their new waterfront Port Campus. Their Fountain campus is housed in the Historic Properties district, adjacent to the scenic boardwalks of Halifax Harbour. The Victorian terrace-style campus – the only one of its kind in North America – is an interconnected row of 19 former merchant shops and warehouses bounded by Hollis and Duke Streets and the cobblestone Granville pedestrian terrace. Full of character and many mysterious nooks and stairwells, the interiors are open, rugged and hospitable, and have adapted well to varied needs.
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