As a "Project Class" to be held from FY 2025, ICA Kyoto will take over the activities of Global Seminar, Graduate School. *
Click here for information on activities of ICA Kyoto.
*We are not currently accepting student applications.

Master Course Specialized in Becoming a Top Artist or Curator

Global Seminar is a program devoted to developing your intellect and ability to advance as an artist or curator. To help achieve your goal, our program is designed for you to acquire a broad knowledge that will guide you in starting your career. By seeing the big picture and grasping what is going on all over the world, you will have a wider perspective while accumulating unique research of your own.

The whole program— from lectures to discussions with guest lecturers— is held in English, which is a fundamental skill in the global art scene.

We ensure that you can make the most of your time at Global Seminar learning and discovering, to take a great leap into the world as an artist or curator.



A program with small class sizes

In order to promote a special educational program with small class sizes, each year up to 5 students will be accepted.


Through research trips abroad, students can experience the mood around the world

We will carry out research trips to Kyoto, Tokyo, and abroad and visit renown museums, galleries, and artist studios to understand the mood of locations around the world.


An assemble of internationally active guests; strengthening of English skills

Approximately six times throughout the year, we will invite guests to give intensive lectures, mainly world-leading international and domestic artists and curators. Since these international lectures will be in English, we aim to strengthen language skills.


Focusing on the future, an emphasis on studying Asian art

Not only limited to Western and Japanese art, we also emphasize the study of art history, social history, and traditional culture, etc.. of the Asia-Pacific region.


Fostering abilities to survive the age

In order to survive this post-internet age, we foster the abilities to collect information, carry out survey and research, compile knowledge and give presentation through common research and projects.

the way of being an artist

Statement of the Foundation of Global Seminar

Mami Kataoka, founding director of Global Seminar and also Director of the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo, President of CIMAM (International Committee for Museums and Collections of Modern Art), shares her view of what Global Seminar aims to achieve.

Mind map

For those wanting to be an artist on the international stage, no “golden method” exists to reach that goal.
But it is also true, as Mami Kataoka explains from experience working with many internationally acclaimed artists, that many share similar trends in their career paths. Kataoka shares introductions from students that demonstrate many different ways of being an artist through these illustrations. One never knows what the future holds after graduation. However, the experience from Global Seminar generates valuable tools to survive in the world.

Mind map


Mami Kataoka

Mami Kataoka (Advisor / Founding Director)
Mami Kataoka is Adjunct Professor at Kyoto University of the Arts Graduate School, Director of the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo and President of CIMAM (International Committee for Museums and Collections of Modern Art) [2020-2022]. She was also Artistic Director of the 21st Biennale of Sydney (2018).

Kazuya Nakayama

Kazuya Nakayama (Director)
Kazuya Nakayama is Professor at Kyoto University of the Arts Graduate School, Artist. He also worked in the ateliers of Jean-Luc Vilmouth, Guillaume Paris, Tadashi Kawamata as a guest researcher at École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris, France (until 2017). Recent exhibitions include Partie de campagne (titre parapluie) (Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris-Pantin), Exhibition of Kuandu Residency Program (Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, Taipei) and many others.

Koichiro Osaka

Koichiro Osaka (Associate Professor at Kyoto University of the Arts Graduate School / Director of Asakusa Art Space)
Born in 1979, Koichiro Osaka is a curator, writer and the founding director of ASAKUSA. His recent curatorial projects include: "The Imperial Ghost in the Neoliberal Machine (Figuring the CIA)" at e-flux, (New York, 2019); and "Curse Mantra: How to Kill Factory Owners" at Para Site International Art Residency (Hong Kong, 2019). Program Director of ICA Kyoto (Institute of Contemporary Arts Kyoto).


Graduated from the Faculty of Literature, Doshisha University. She studied modernist art in Brazil at Kyoto University Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies. After completing her master's degree, she received a Bachelor's degree in Teaching French as a Foreign Language from INALCO (Institut national des langues et civilisations orientales) in Paris. She restarted her research on Brazilian art, focusing on Nikkei art in the doctoral program at the Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies, Kyoto University. After studying at the University of Sao Paulo ECA (Department of Communication and Arts), she completed a doctoral course at the Kyoto University Graduate School, PhD (Human and Environmental Studies). She teaches art history and French. Her thesis includes "Uniqueness and Assimilation of Nikkei Artists: Focusing on Seibikai", "“Devouring” art—Anthropophagic Mind and Brazilian Modern Art", in Cannibalism as the “Other” , Suiseisha, Tokyo, 2019, among others. Author of Japanese Brazilian Art and the Anthropophagic Mind—the Path of Creation and Coexistence , Sangensha, Tokyo, 2017.


Nicholas Joseph Locke

Nicholas Joseph Locke

Born in the United States of America. From his childhood, Locke has been interested in photography and the art of literature such as poetry and novels. After graduating from the School of Visual Arts in New York (SVA), he studied abroad in Japan, due to his interest in the country’s language. In KUA, Locke is working on his own research and production with the theme “Photo Conversation”, while acquiring qualifications to become a curator.

Student's Voice

“While studying photography at SVA in New York, I was concerned about the commitment to the art industry from people in the U.S. With no National Museum of Art in the country, I felt that there was not much attention paid to art, which led me to think about what is really going on around the world when it comes to contemporary art, and to learn in a graduate school which is conscious about this issue. At that time, I heard about Global Seminar through a professor at the university.

In this program, we have artists or curators from different countries who come for two weeks of intensive lectures. Looking back on this year's course, I was impressed by the well-organized and consistent program, led by program advisor and curator Mami Kataoka’s well thought out curriculum.

It was especially a great opportunity to be a part of lectures from artist Susan Norrie and curator David Teh, who both took up “Politics and Art” as a theme. In Norrie’s lecture, we considered how the Japanese government has been reacting to the incident of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, and we also discussed how to approach topics like this as an artist. Teh focused on the relationship between museums and creation production under that theme, and those two lectures certainly enabled us to have a deeper discussion from seeing completely different perspectives.

I have also learned about the diverse values in art found in different countries— while also being conscious of these differences that are required of museums. Right now, I am working on obtaining qualifications to become a curator, as I became interested in the occupation after my education at KUA.

From Japan, I hope that I can continue to discover the art of the world.”

As of April 1st, 2020, Uryuyama Academic Foundation “Kyoto University of Art and Design" will be renamed as Uryuyama Academic Foundation “Kyoto University of the Arts,” reflecting our educational curriculum and activities based on our future vision, “Grand Design 2030,” as well as in celebration of the 30th anniversary since the university was established.