Call for applications 2024

PhD in Practice, Academy of Fine Arts Vienna

Application period: February 1–29th, 2024
Beginning of studies: October 1st, 2024

Info meetings: 

Thursday, November 16th 2023, 5pm

Thursday, January 25th 2024, 5pm


Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 919 8609 4936
Passcode: 88$&#4


Caitlin Berrigan, Virginie Bobin, Rehema Chachage, Serena Lee and Eliana Otta. Photo: Anette Baldauf.


The Academy of Fine Arts Vienna invites applications to its doctoral program for research in artistic practice. The PhD-in-Practice program provides participants with the opportunity to pursue their individual arts-based research projects in a collective learning environment with a decidedly transdisciplinary and international bent. The program is coordinated by Renate Lorenz (Professor for Art and Research) and Anette Baldauf (Professor for Methodology and Epistemology). The invited lecturers and guests include Saidiya Hartman, Okwui Okpokwasili, Tina Campt, Eve Tuck, Otobong Nkanga, Fred Moten, Stefano Harney, Sharon Hayes, Nikita Dhawan, and Kapwani Kiwanga.


The PhD in Practice program is built on a concept of arts-based research that relates to critical epistemologies, as they have been developed in the context of feminist, queer, postcolonial, ecological, postmarxist and other political and emancipatory projects. Inspired by these struggles, the program approaches arts-based research as a space for the negotiation of social, political, cultural and economic conflicts. It refers to a history of research in the arts that has been developed in dialog with an array of different fields, including academia, activism, high art as much as pop and subculture. It thus privileges cultural/artistic productions that are concerned with a critique of injustice, social hierarchies and exclusions, and is interested in the development of heterotopic visions as well as activist interventions.

The program is designed for a duration of four years. During this time the participants will develop their projects artistically, theoretically, and analytically in coordination with the academic and artistic team of co-participants and faculty. Participants conceive, organize, document, and carry out independent and/or collaborative arts-based research in a PhD supervision environment that is dedicated to transdisciplinary and international exchange.
Course work is mandatory during the first two years: so-called focus weeks take place one week per monthduring the academic calendar (October to January, March to June). During these weeks the participants and the PhD in Practice team meet for seminars, lectures, excursions and other research and study events. Participants are expected to take an active part in organizing the program, including the conceptualization and organization of workshops, guest lectures, exhibitions, etc.

Available positions
Three PhD positions are available with a 75 percent employment contract with a duration of four years (payment according to B1, Section 49 Abs. 3KV, currently 2.684,10 EUR/month before tax, incl. health benefits). These positions fund the candidates in their completion of the PhD project; they require residency in Vienna and contributions to the administration, teaching and self-organisation of the PhD-in-Practice program.
Additionally, two PhD positions are available without funding or employment through the Academy (student-only, low residency scheme, does not require moving to Vienna).

Entry requirements

A degree (Magister, MA or Diplom) from a recognized university/academy, and submission of the required application material. Applicants with an ongoing artistic career are encouraged to apply.


The application is online only. Please submit all material in English! Applications must be uploaded within the call dates. Application period: February 1–29 2024.

The application must contain:
–the completed web application form
–a curriculum vitae (including a list of exhibitions the applicant has contributed to and of publications or other artistic and scholarly work that has been published; pdf)
–a project proposal (ten pages max; one and a half line spacing; pdf)
–an abstract of the project proposal (one page max, one and a halfline spacing; pdf)
–a digital portfolio (a single pdf document, less than five MB)
–a scan of the certificate(s) proving that you received a degree (Magister, MA or Diplom) from a recognized/accredited university/academy
–Diploma Supplement (if available) and Transcripts (mandatory) of highest academic degree completed (including length of program and credits/ECTS)
The online application form will be available from February 1–29, 2024 here.
Admission process
The admission jury will review all applications and choose those applicants to be invited for an interview. On June 3rd and 4th 2024 the jury will conduct interviews with the selected applicants. Results will be made public shortly after.