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In the past people would have spoken of graphic arts, even earlier of commercial arts, even earlier of movable characters, of the art of wood cut and of the culture of writing. But that was in the past.

Today communication between people all over the world uses global networks of electronic data that speed around the world in endless abundance, either by cable or wireless. Everywhere, the air is full of data. It can not be seen, heard or tasted. But it can be made visible, audible or, in any other form, perceptible by the senses.

That is the task of communication artists. They find the form in which messages can be communicated clearly and beautifully, and they know through which means they can convey them. The means is the media and since there are many different kinds of media that transport information, all that can be combined with one another, the term multimedia was created.

Today, the many gadgets that process data and make them perceptible can be bought and played with by anyone. From all over the world, these gadgets' owners can communicate with one another from the comfort of their homes, thanks to the possibilities of the internet. On the screen data becomes visible, whether it be stagnant information or moving pictures. Printed, it fills letterboxes unsolicited; they can be bought as newspapers or as books.

This new, international, popular culture, in which all participate, has many faces. It is not committed to formal beauty or clarity. Due to this lack of commitment, it is not surprising that an uninhibited and self-confident amateurism predominates the scene.

But design is possible. It requires knowledge that can be learned. This is what the subject area of communication arts attempts to achieve. Basic knowledge in dealing with media: with the pencil, the pen-nib, the brush, the camera and the computer are taught during the Basic Study.

The theoretical subjects impart the historic and cultural position of the contemporary designer to the students, what has been done and what is characteristic of the thinking of past epochs. They also give scientific insight into the nature of humans in order to find ways to arouse their attention and open their souls.

Students learn how to design consciously and master the necessary knowledge that facilitates the professional realisation of their ideas. On completion of their Basic Study they are awarded the First Diploma. In the Advanced Study students can test their skills working on selected projects and develop their personal inclinations under the mentorship of their advisors. They can either specialise in one main emphasis or work in different directions. There are four broad directions offered at the moment: graphic design, moving pictures design with its components: illustration and animation, electronic media and photography (analogue and digital).

With the thesis project the students show their ability to organise an adequately extensive project on their own. The thesis consists of two parts: a practical and a theoretical. In the theoretical paper they comment on their point of view which can be closely related to the project or they can investigate a different problem.

We hope that this program builds personality in the students who then live up to the fast and unpredictable developments in communication, who again and again give meaning to the development of technology, coming from their own knowledge of its original purpose; and who joyfully carry an artistic standard into the world of design, that live up to human dignity.

Prof. Helmut Brade

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