Art, Performance & Cinema Studies

Art, Performance & Cinema Studies is the only BA at SFU that studies the fine and performing arts, with a focus on visual culture. In the first two years, Art, Performance & Cinema Studies students gain a grounding in the history of visual art, cinema, studio art, and, if they wish, the performing arts. Upper-year courses include critical theory, historical and thematic topics in visual culture, a course in performance studies, interdisciplinary research methods, curating, and a popular internship course.

Art, Performance & Cinema Studies prepares students for careers in the arts. Our alumni include arts writers, arts administrators, curators, film programmers, and practicing artists. The degree also prepares students for a number of graduate degrees. Our alumni have taken MA and PhD degrees in Visual Art, Cultural Studies, Performance Studies, Critical and Curatorial Studies, English, Liberal Studies, Theory, Culture, and Politics, Library Science, and other degrees.

For information about applying to the program, please follow the links at the Future Students section of our site.

Program Information

To discuss Art, Performance & Cinema Studies courses or a major or minor in the area, contact Professor Denise Oleksijczuk, the Art, Performance & Cinema Studies area coordinator.

P: 778.782.3238

To see detailed descriptions of the program options in the Art, Performance & Cinema Studies area, please visit the Academic Calendar.

Photo: Zaki Rezwan


What is special about APCS?

APCS is the only undergraduate degree at SFU that studies the fine and performing arts!

What’s it like to do an BA in an art school?

It’s awesome! Studying alongside contemporary artists in all disciplines, taking studio courses, and attending an exciting range of exhibitions, performances, and screenings,  APCS students are immersed in the contemporary art scene.

What will I study?

Students learn histories of cinema, modern and contemporary art, theories of performance, critical writing in the arts, curation, and more.

Can I specialize in a given area?

Yes. The APCS major offers two streams: one in art and performance studies, and one in cinema studies.

Do students get practical training?

Yes. Students do internships with local arts organizations that give them valuable skills in arts management, communications, archiving, and production.

What can I do with this degree?

The BA prepares students for careers in the arts: curating and programming, festivals, galleries, artist-run centres, arts administration, and arts advocacy. It gives students all the skills you gain from a liberal arts degree, like writing, argumentation, analysis, what else — and on top of that, skills in acute audiovisual analysis, art historical, curatorial, and performance studies analysis. It also prepares students for Master’s degrees in studies of the arts.

The Comparative Media Arts Journal (CMA Journal)

The CMA Journal is a newly established open-access, student-run, peer-reviewed journal, publishing the best of graduate and postgraduate essays, artworks and experimental content, created and run by MA students.



APCS Catalogues

APCS Catalogues gather and present some of the best essays and projects from across the Art, Performance & Cinema Studies area.  

CA314: The Politics of Art and Visual Culture in Romantic-Era Britain

In CA314: The Politics of Art and Visual Culture in Romantic-Era Britain, students curated a series of exhibitions of rare books, prints, and postcards, from the Special Collections division of the W.A.C Bennett Library at Simon Fraser University. The exhibitions, which took the topics discussed in the seminar in new directions, were held in March in the glass display cases on the 3rd floor of the library until it closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A few of the physical exhibits, "In Pursuit of the Picturesque: Decolonising Perspectives on Land," and "Resistance: ain't I a woman? A History of Black Female Representation and the Aesthetics of the Female Body in Western Art History," have been adapted for online access as downloadable PDFs. 

Denise Oleksijczuk, April 2020

CA314: The Politics of Art and Visual Culture in Romantic-Era Britain