The School of Urban Design of Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA) was formally established in September 2002. As one of the eight specialty schools, it takes advantage of CAFA’s central position in the fields of fine arts education, creation and research in China and adopts an open teaching mode to cultivate innovative professionals who will lead the development of China’s urban culture and possess comprehensive capabilities in art, design and market.
Under the guidance of CAFA’s overall school-running policy, the School of Urban Design takes “Orientation towards Research, Priority of Application, Promotion of Innovation and Relation to Society” as its ultimate goals. Moreover, guided by the frontiers of discipline development, as well as the major regional and national needs in China, the School of Urban Design attaches great importance to the formulation of open teaching in the construction of disciplines, aggregates resources through innovative mechanism, facilitates in-depth communication with society and promotes the formation of a balanced “ecosystem” of learning, research and production.
In terms of teaching, the School of Urban Design emphasizes the combination of fashion and research, technology and design, innovation and application, education and industry, university and society. In accordance with national and regional development strategies and the features of industrial structure, the disciplines of the School of Urban Design are developed to improve the quality of urban culture, influence urban lifestyle and promote the development of cultural industry. As a consequence, three major teaching areas have been formed: art urban design, creative urban design and cultural urban design.
At present, apart from the three major teaching areas (art urban design, creative urban design and cultural urban design) there is also the basic teaching department in the School of Urban Design of CAFA. It has 24 teaching and research studios and offices. By adhering to the principle of openness, innovation and practice, the School of Urban Design has successfully adapted to the development of society, directly met the cultural, economic and social demands in the process of China's urban construction, and built new innovative and growth-oriented disciplines and education system in China. Apart from teaching, the School of Urban Design has also undertaken a large number of design projects of the national and local government, including the design of the image and landscape of the Beijing Olympic Center, the rail transit stations in Beijing and many other cities, China Pavilion in Shanghai World Expo, the public art of the new Beijing Airport and “Happy Chinese New Year • Fantastic Art China” etc.
The two-stage teaching structure of the School of Urban Design:
The first stage follows the curriculum system. With teaching as the main method, the focuses of this stage are the transfer of knowledge, the acquisition of skills and the training of thinking. Standardization and theories will be emphasized in teaching. In the first and second year, according to the credit system, the type, number, and proportion of courses will be determined for students of different majors. On the basis of subject foundation requisites, the students will also learn knowledge and acquire skills of different fields by taking elective courses to broaden their academic horizon.
The second stage follows the research project system, with supervisor teaching as the main method, and each studio as the subject of implementation. In this stage, the focuses are the interaction with society, as well as the cultivation of the students’ comprehensive capability of solving problems. Through the establishment of open studios and the implementation of projects, many top designers, social experts and business operators are introduced, together with the teachers in the School of Urban Design, to build project teams, conduct project planning and implementation and build platforms to display the research achievements and promote them to society.
Department of Art Urban Design:
It includes public Art and Space Design Studio, Public Art and Experience Design Studio, Space Exhibition Design Studio, Urban Visual Design Studio, and Residential Environment System. Art Research and Studio.
Department of Creative Urban Design:
It includes household product design (Traditional Creation Research Office, Industrialization Research Office and Trending Research Office), New Craft Product Design Studio, Wood Art Design Studio, Ceramic Design Studio, Metal Craft Design Studio, Furnishing Art Design Studio.
Department of Cultural Urban Design:
Film and VFX Studio, Future Media Studio, Picture Book Creation Studio, Hand-drawn Animation Studio, Experimental Animation Studio, Digital 3D Animation Studio