SACI Announces New MFA in Studio Art Program Director: Filipe Rocha da Silva

Filipe Rocha da Silva in his studio

Filipe Rocha da Silva in his studio

SACI is delighted to announce that, after an international search, Dr. Filipe Rocha da Silva has been appointed Director of SACI’s MFA in Studio Arts program. He will join SACI’s faculty beginning this September.

Dr. Filipe Rocha da Silva received his doctorate in Visual Arts from the University of Evora in 2005, and an MFA in Printmaking from Pratt Institute in 1984. He has extensive experience teaching studio art at the university level and, in addition to being a dynamic artist, is a highly distinguished scholar.

For over a decade he has taught at the University of Évora in Portugal, where he has headed Visual Arts Research at the Centro de História da Arte e Investigação Artística. His paintings, drawings, and prints have received worldwide recognition. Filipe has had one-person exhibitions in Lisbon, Porto, Palma de Maiorca, Rabat, Paris, New York City, and Florence and participated in group exhibitions in Portugal, Spain, Greece, Germany, Monaco, China, and the USA.

Filipe’s artworks are in major museums and government collections in Portugal and Spain, and articles on his work have been published in a number of Portuguese and Spanish periodicals. His essays on art have appeared in newspapers, journals, and books in both Europe and the USA. He has studied and taught in Florence, is fluent in Italian, French, Portuguese, Spanish, and English, and is an expert on the connections between historical Italian art and contemporary artmaking throughout the world. See examples of his work and his teaching philosophy below.


I strongly believe that students should be fully immersed in the awareness of personal practice within the contemporary debate–an essential tenet of SACI’s MFA in Studio Art program. Personal practice must include intensive work so that we, as contemporary artists, can achieve proficiency in the expanding number of actions and techniques that are now called art. It also requires a certain amount of introspection so that we can increase our self-knowledge as a means of creating unique works that add to what has already been so brilliantly accomplished. Engagement with the contemporary debate is crucial to gauging our public, the social impact of our artwork, and how this work will contribute to the kind of change we believe is necessary. When we approach art not as vertically chronological but as transversally present, the contemporary debate can be said to include our work as well–and the different layers of artistic production which are so richly present in the Florentine experience.

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Find out more about Graduate Programs at SACI.

About SACI

SACI is a US non-profit College of Art and Design in Florence, Italy, for undergraduate and graduate students seeking accredited instruction in studio art, design, conservation, art history, and Italian language and culture. Founded in 1975, SACI offers the following programs: Academic Semester/Year Abroad, Summer Studies, Venice Summer Program, Post-Bac in Conservation, MFA in Studio Art, MA in Art History.

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