Willem de Kooning Academy

Right at the heart of the design city of Rotterdam is the Willem de Kooning Academy. Its striking complex of buildings houses many workshops and studios (‘stations’) where students can work on a very wide range of challenging projects. Students work individually or in teams and are supervised by tutors and visiting tutors. The Willem de Kooning Academy runs technical workshops from beginners to advanced level.

The Willem de Kooning Academy offers contemporary and cutting edge art courses that complement changing, international practice. The outside world is no longer looking for the autonomous artist or the graphic designer, but rather for people who possess a multitude of talents and skills and who look beyond the borders of their original discipline. These are ‘creating pioneers’. The speed and complexity of technological developments strongly influence contemporary and future professional practice. Our students will work both at local and at international levels with professionals from different disciplines in open and virtual settings.

“It is our mission to help our students become the creating pioneers the economy is looking for, and to prepare them for their international professional careers.”

Pioneers – because the academy is not there to reproduce what already exists, but to put the applications and techniques available in the near future into practice right now. Our students themselves are the creative pioneers the creative sector so badly needs. Willem de Kooning Academy’s role is to help our students to become pioneers.
Would you like to know more on how we think about the curriculum of an academy of art and design in the 21st century? Then please read the essay ‘Re-inventing the art school‘, published by Willem de Kooning Academy and the research centre Creating010.

Students at Willem de Kooning Academy need to have visual intelligence and a high level of determination to succeed in their studies and in their profession. Our students do not wait for things to come to them, but will show initiative and take matters in their own hands. By working on realistic assignments and professional products, our students learn where they fit in and what their professional role is. This helps them develop a vision of what they can do in their chosen professions, where they wish to be in life and how they will be able to support themselves with their work. By the time our students have graduated, they have worked with other students from different departments on very complex projects. This allows them to build their networks and to work in a multidisciplinary team on projects that are important within the international context of today’s professional practice.

Courses Overview: Undergraduate and Postgraduate

Willem de Kooning Academy Rotterdam University offers a number of bachelor courses in higher education. Within the four main study routes of Fine Art, Design, Fine Art & Design Teacher Training and Leisure Management, you can choose between 13 majors: Fine Art, Photography, Advertising, Animation, Audiovisual Design, Graphic Design, Illustration, Spatial Design, Lifestyle, Fashion Design, Product Design, Fine Art & Design Teacher Training and Leisure Management.

Do you have an artistic talent, as well as a hunger for academic knowledge? Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) and Willem de Kooning Academy offer you the possibility to combine theory and practice in a five-year Double Degree programme (300 ECTS). If you follow the RASL program, you will ultimately receive two bachelor degrees: one from EUR (Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science) and one from Willem de Kooning Academy (Bachelor of Arts).

Noteworthy Alumni

Jonathan Christopher Hofwegen, Maryam Kordbacheh, Katrien Baaij, Margreeth Olsthoorn, Wendela van Dijk, Kelly Erentreich, Wouter Leenders, Katinka Feijs, Jasna Rokegem, Marjoleijn Stormezand, Yentl Malou Oomens, Nada van Dalen.

Life in Rotterdam

‘Offbeat and fiercely committed to the new’ Rotterdam is one of the most important cities in The Netherlands in terms of art, culture, entertainment and leisure. The leading New York Times and Rough Guide put Rotterdam in the top ten of must-visit cities. Affordable housing; a young creative multicultural population; and a no-nonsense mentality make Rotterdam a great place to live.

Tuition and Scholarship

If you’re an international student and wish to apply for one of our courses, you might be eligble to a scholarship. The Holland scholarship is meant for international students from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) who want to do their bachelors or masters in Holland. The EEA consists of the EU countries and Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
Ready for studying in the Netherlands? Go to Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences’ website and apply for a scholarship now.
Please note: if you are a NON-EU student and wish to apply for a Holland scholarship, you are asked to send in – among other criteria – a letter of motivation.