See what this programme offers

The Department of Fine Art acknowledges the extensiveness of contemporary art and challenges students to develop their own artistic practice. The department offers gsix streams (new-media art, printmaking, sculpture, painting, ceramics and miniature painting), which embody studio practice, theoretical studies, and personal and professional development. The programme encourages students to engage with urban discourses to stimulate intellectual and aesthetic responses through the development of strong visual skills and analytical and critical abilities. The courses we offer subsequently encourage the advancement of innovative skills in tandem with the development and processing of ideas. The programme is enriched by the diverse experience and contribution of its faculty members who are invested in education and research in addition to their artistic practice. This offers students the opportunity to work with their tutors on exhibitions, publications, and other events outside the curriculum. Teaching is reinforced through seminars, presentations, critiques, and tutorials conducted by a range of permanent and visiting faculty members who encourage an in-depth understanding of the various and multiplying fields of practice within the contemporary arts. Gallery and studio visits are an essential component of the programme and are supplemented by annual national study trips as a means to enhance learning and discourse.

Third Semester
Course CodeCourse TitleCredit Hours
FA307Art & Society 13
FA334Drawing Methodologies I3
FA356Studio 1 (Sculpture / Miniature/New Media Art/Computer Graphics)6
LA354Histories of Art, Design and Architecture III3
LA308Islamic and Pakistan Studies3
Total Credit: 18  


Fourth Semester
Course CodeCourse TitleCredit Hours
FA435Drawing Methodologies II3
FA407Art and Society II3
FA460Studio 2 (Ceramic / Printmaking / Painting)6
FA478Computer Graphics3
LAArt History/ Visual Culture Elective3
Total Credits: 18  


Fifth Semester
Course CodeCourse TitleCredit Hours
FA536Experimental Drawing 13
 Studio Major Electives:6
 Fine Art New Media
3D Studios
2D Studios
DE504Computer Graphics3
LAGeneral Elective3
LAArt History/ Visual Culture Elective3
Total Credits: 18  


Sixth Semester
Course CodeCourse TitleCredit Hours
FA637Experimental Drawing 23
FAXXStudio Major Electives:6
 Fine Art New Media
3D Studios
2D Studios
FA607Art & Society3
LA612Research Methodologies
(Pre-Req for Final Research Paper)
LAGeneral Elective3
Total Credits: 18  


Seventh Semester
Course CodeCourse TitleCredit Hours
FA738Conceptual Drawing 13
FA741Major Studio 39
LA768Final Research Paper3
 Total Credit: 15  


Eighth Semester
Course CodeCourse TitleCredit Hours
FA877Major Studio 4 – Final Thesis12
Total Credit: 15  

Total Credits Semesters 1-2: 36
Total Credits Semesters 3-8: 102
Total Credits required for a Bachelor in Fine Art degree: 138

3rd and 4th SEMESTER

After their Foundation courses, students enrolled in Fine Art are made to explore their creativity through a range of workshops and studios. These focus mainly on developing their under-standing of various concepts and skills within contemporary art. Each studio is led by a faculty member who engages students with specific critical perspective and technical knowledge.

Drawing Methodologies

Drawing is core component of the Fine Art department and caters to all other pathways we offer. Our courses aim at the establishing skill building and technical application – but most importantly, they serve as a means towards imaginative expression. They reinforce the development of visual understanding and introduce a broad range of materials and techniques. Students are expected to explore drawing as an expanded field of practice within contemporary art. Since drawing is seen as an independent means of expression which motivates the growth of a personal vision, the courses are thoroughly supported by lectures, visual presentations, and periodic critical evaluations that facilitate an informed and pluralist approach to the subject.


The Painting course investigates modern media and techniques through intensive studio sessions taught by practising artists. Initial courses explore techniques applicable to a range of painting methods and initiate the student to a formal understanding of pigments, grounds, surfaces and preparation. Supplemented with the exploration and understanding of colour through studio based exercises, these form the basis of building a strong visual vocabulary. Students gain the opportunity to work with commissioned public projects in the city and on-site with faculty members as part of their curriculum. Advanced courses emphasise inquiry and the development of conceptual approaches in contemporary painting along with the broadening and understanding of history of painting. Studio and gallery visits, artists’ talks, critical discussions, and an intense research based approach contribute to the building of an independent body of work in the final year.


The Sculpture course in the Department of Fine Art initiates students into traditional skill-building methods through the introduction of various materials and the challenges they present. Students learn fundamental methods of carving, modelling, welding, and mould-making. The Sculpture course engages with conceptual concerns that run simultaneously through process-based challenges of various materials. The Sculpture studios offer an amalgamation of technical and material concerns along with the demands of critical discourse. A series of seminars, studio visits, artist talks, critiques, along with a familiarisation of the city’s and the region’s resources on materials underpins the course and prepares the student to experience a range of approaches to the subject. As in other disciplines, students are encouraged to develop a personal vocabulary of expression towards an independent body of work in the final year.


Taught as any other medium of Fine Art, the Ceramics course offers the uniqueness of under-taking functional and sculptural approaches in art-making. Students learn established methods of working in clay, progressing toward experimentation, and exploring techniques to facilitate their work. This course encourages students to use their imagination and develop image-making skills to address social, cultural and material concerns.

The state of the art Ceramics Studio at IVS allows students to work with a range of materials and firing methods. An integral part of working in this medium is the understanding of materials, which is incorporated into the studio course as the Materials Science segment. This entails a study of raw materials through research, analyses, tests, and experiments undertaken to create clay bodies, glazes, and slips. A close interaction with studio instructors, demos, regular critiques, and discussions facilitate students in developing independent bodies of work.


The Printmaking course offers students a range of techniques and methods within the discipline as a means to develop a vocabulary for contemporary art practice. Intaglio printing, wood-cut, mono printing, silk screen, papermaking, artists’ books, and printing methods are introduced throughout the second and third years as a means to hone technical skills as well as develop a personal language. Highly qualified instructors conduct the programme through regular demonstrations and discussions. The printmaking studios have welcomed a host of Pakistani and international printmakers who have contributed to the learning environment through workshops, talks, and demonstrations. The studio has also been involved in initiating print portfolio projects, which have been a valuable source of learning for the students. The printmaking studio is equipped with three intaglio presses, one lithography press, and facilities for silk screen.

Miniature Painting

The Miniature Painting course extends the vocabulary of painting by drawing from a very traditional genre that has been reinterpreted to become part of the contemporary art vocabulary.

The course places emphasis on traditional skills and techniques of Miniature Painting by studying and practicing the styles and conventions of masters from different stylistic schools. To understand the traditional style in its pure form, students initially reproduce miniatures  particularly  from  the  Persian,  Mughal  and  Kangra traditions, which focus on understanding line, form, colour and rendering (Purdakht). As part of the traditional training methods, students are taught to prepare their own tools and materials under the guidance of their instructors. The preparation of pigments and surfaces (Vasli, the paper used for miniature painting) is integral to the course. Students learn traditional techniques such as Siyah Qalam and Gudrung as means to understand the full range of the genre and its vocabulary. The course also integrates the appreciation of contemporary art practices within Miniature Painting through gallery and studio visits, workshops and artists’ talks. Critical evaluations are conducted on a regular basis to help develop an independent body of work in the final year.

New Media Art (Film and Video)

Our New Media Art program offers students a unique approach to an interdisciplinary curriculum in which prominent practitioners come together and work with students as they develop aesthetics and critical perspectives in emergent technologies. The program offers a broad range of studio based courses such as film & video, animation, photography, Internet & digital-art, performance art and installation – focusing on responsive technologies and their implementation in critical thinking and artistic applications. Students will be assigned projects to help understand the relationship between technology and visual culture in contemporary art practices. During the length of the program students will be looking at the history and theory of New Media Art and addressing topics ranging from and within issues in contemporary art and times. Students will learn how to analyze and resolve technical and aesthetic problems, and benefit from critical review, gallery exhibitions, visiting artists and specialists.

Computer Skills

Students are introduced to the essentials of information technology, computer skills, software, and website development that assist them in expanding their vocabulary and reach as visual artists. Taught during the second and third years of study, this course is designed to meet the specific requirements of the Fine Art curriculum. The Computer Skills course aims towards a proficiency in handling different software that enables students to expedite their thought process and develop an independent approach towards original artwork.

4th and 5th SEMESTER

Rather than following a medium based format, our department wishes to focus more on innovative forms of practice. This will help give students a broader understanding of materials in relation to the development of their ideas. It will also give them practice to understand fine art through a more contemporary and interdisci-plinary approach. The integrated studio system will allow students to choose one area of study from three pathways: 2D Studios, 3D Studios, Fine Art New Media. Each will encourage students to develop their work in relation to different forms of practice rather than remaining within the limitations of a single medium. Each pathway itself will be structured to provide an interdisciplinary approach where students will engage in cross pathway projects.

Fine Art New Media

The Fine Art New Media Course will encourage a diverse approach to exploring ideas through the use of different mediums and technologies. It will allow students to build their interests through developing expertise in a chosen medium or through employing a combination of different mediums that are able to create a relationship with one another. Students will be able to develop their practice through a broad range of technologies and approaches such as film, animation, photography, sound, drawing, electronic and digital medias and publications. Over the course of two semesters, students will undertake various workshops, which will provide them technical knowledge on the mentioned mediums.

2D Studios

The 2D Studios will explore the expanded field of painting through understanding politics of contemporary image making and abstraction. Students will be required to consider compositional relations, picture plane and surface as fundamental features to the production of visuals. Students will be working with different materials and mediums alongside extensive theoretical readings, which will help them, place and study their own ideas and practice within the greater context of history of art/image-making. They will be introduced to extensive workshops within the faculty of Oil Painting, Print Making, Miniature Painting, and Photography. This course will require students to invest in quality material in order to ensure a better understanding and importance of medium and its impact on production.

3D Studios

The 3D Studios will explore matter, material, scale and production in relation to ideas of place and audience. Students will go through various workshops where they will introduced to a range of traditional and contemporary methods of production. Through experimentation and interventions students will be expected to work around ideas on object making, assemblage, installation, drawing, found objects, digital matter and the moving image. We encourage understanding production in its broadest sense and through the context of space, place, audience and time. Technical support will be provided in the use of metal, wood, ceramics, construction, casting and molding techniques and the still and moving image.

7th and 8th SEMESTER

Final Term Thesis

Students are required to undertake a self-directed project in their final term which reflects their learning throughout the previous years. Through this project each student is expected to engage in independent thinking and produce a body of work that is strong and comprehensive in terms of Research, Concept Development, and Execution. This research and analytical, mentored, independent study course represents the culmination of advanced studies in studio art. Students are expected to present their work to a group of external jurors in a professional setting towards the end of the term. Students in the Final Year will also be offered electives and workshops in Documentation and Presentation Skill, and Ideas on Exhibition.

This cumulated practice and research then becomes part of the BFA Student Thesis Exhibition.


The Department of Fine Art facilitates an intern-ship programme during the summer break for students in semester five. Students are expected to work in national and international art organizations, galleries, NGOs, television, or artists’ studios. This experience with artists, curators, and art managers is a means to enhance the students’ personal as well as professional developmental skills, and provides a platform from which they can make more informed and educated decisions about their future careers.

Study Visits

Students are offered the occasion to visit one provincial and one national destination each in the three years spent in the Department. These visits provide the Fine Art students with the opportunity to encounter original works of art and architecture, engage with artists and gallery curators from diverse backgrounds, attend workshops and seminars, and visit other art institutions to exchange ideas, approaches, and discourses. These national study tours create platforms for dialogue and new practices beyond IVS and Karachi. The trips are planned and organised by the faculty, built around the learning objectives of the student as a visual artist.

Community Services

The Fine Art Building Community (FAB) project is one of the important pillars of the department. The department has in the past initiated and engaged in projects that are motivated towards a positive social change within the community. Some significant projects include a series of art training workshops for teachers and special needs students of KVTC (Karachi Vocational Training Centre), The Bus School Project, (a Citizen’s Education Development Foundation’s (CEDF) experiment in home schooling), and Art Therapy classes for patients in The Recovery House, a rehabilitation centre for patients with mental illnesses. In 2015-2016, the students and faculty of the department of Fine Art painted the walls in the Children’s Cancer Ward in the National Institute of Child Health (NICH) and the Children’s Burns Ward in the Civil Hospital.

Awards, Grants, and Scholarships

The Department of Fine Art offers major awards to students who show excellence in their studio practice and academic research. The Zahoor-ul-Akhlaq Drawing Portfolio Award, instituted in the name of the celebrated artist, is presented to the student who has excelled in Drawing during the final year. The Abu Shamim Areff Award for Academic Research, set up by the Foundation of Museum of Modern Art (FOMMA), and instituted after the eminent bureaucrat and former member of the IVS Executive Committee, is awarded to the student who excels in academic research. The Sher Asfandyar Khan Scholarship Fund consists of four awards presented to students demonstrating academic excellence and/or deserving financial assistance in the final semester.

Collaborations and Affiliations

The Department of Fine Art works in close collaboration with the Vasl Artists’ Association, the Goethe Institute, Karachi, the Consulate General of Italy, Karachi, U.S Consulate General, Karachi, the German Consulate General, Karachi and the Karachi Biennale Trust.

Message from the Head of Department

Seema Nusrat
Head, Department of Fine Art

The department of Fine Art prepares students to engage in the meaningful representation of cultural, social, economic, and political discourses through strong visual skills and critical reasoning abilities. Our courses cover a wide range of material understanding and aesthetic attitudes through which our students are prompted to explore the relationship between history, politics, contemporary society and art. 

Department Faculty & Staff

Haider Ali Naqvi
Assistant Professor
  • BFA, National College of Arts, Lahore, Pakistan
Asma Mundrawala
  • DPhil, University of Sussex, UK
  • MA, Art and Performance Theory, Wimbledon School of Art, UK
  • BFA, Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture
Arsalan Nasir
Assistant Professor
  • MA, Art and Design Studies (SVAD) BNU, Pak BFA (Hons.) Visual Studies, University of Karachi
Seher Naveed
Associate Professor
  • MA, Fine Art, Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design, University of the Arts, London, UK
  • BFA, Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, Karachi, Pakistan
Seema Nusrat
Associate Professor and Head of Department
  • MFA, Fine Art and Media Arts, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Canada
  • BFA, Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, Karachi, Pakistan
Shah Numair Ahmed Abbasi
  • BFA, IVS, Pak
Sikander Ali
  • BA, KU, Pak
Sophia Balagamwala
  • MFA, Fine Arts, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
  • BA, Political Science, Visual Art, University of Toronto
Fakhra Intazir
  • Master’s in Philosophy from the University of Karachi, Karachi
  • Bachelor in Media Arts from the University of Karachi
Fazal Abbas Rizvi
  • BFA Honors from the National College of Art, Lahore, Pakistan
Veera Rustomji
  • Master of Arts, University of Arts London, UK
  • BFA, IVS, Pak
Zohair Shaikh
  • MArch, RIBA Part II Advanced Architectural Design, Oxford Brookes University, U.K.
  • BSc (Hons) RIBA Part I - Architecture, Coventry University - U.K.
  • PCATP ID: A07958
Areeb Tariq
  • Bachelors in Visual Arts and Communication Design,
  • Eastern Mediterranean University
Sahiba Rauf
Academic Programme Officer
Abdul Mohammad
  • Printmaking Studio
Babu Krishhan
  • Ceramic Studio
Imraan Sheraz
  • Studio and Production Assistant
Javed Ali
  • Painting Studio
Mohammad Raees
  • Sculpture Studio
Mohammad Afaq
  • Gallery Assistant