We live in a visual world, and the field of art history provides essential tools for experiencing humanity's visible achievements. The Art History Program offers a complete academic curriculum covering the major movements and periods of Western civilization, as well as courses on the arts of Asia, the Americas, and Africa. Students explore contemporary developments in art and art history within our increasingly global society
The Art History Program has successfully attracted many motivated and creative undergraduates who demonstrate their understanding and appreciation of painting, sculpture, architecture, photography, and applied arts.
Among the many outstanding resources and programs available to art history students are:
- Specially arranged visits to major museums in New York and Connecticut with behind-the-scenes tours by curators
- Internships at regional museums and cultural organizations
- Internships at the University's Bellarmine Museum of Art and the Thomas J. Walsh Art Gallery
- Research using the University's Samuel H. Kress Collection of Italian Paintings and the Metropolitan Museum of Art Plaster Cast Collection.
Many art history majors choose to enrich their experience further by spending a semester or year abroad. The skills learned in Art History are valuable for careers in teaching, museum and gallery curating, marketing and media, as well as nearly every job that requires observational interpretation.
Ultimately, the art history curriculum leads to advanced courses and two capstone seminars, with credit also able to be earned through independent study or an internship.
Goals for students taking art history core courses are:
To gain factual knowledge within the discipline of Art History; to learn to apply course material in order to improve critical thinking and problem solve (by making meaning of art, placing art in context, and understanding art as a human endeavor); to learn how to find and use resources effectively to answer questions and solve problems; to learn how to generate questions, evaluate research/information, and develop claims using evidence and logical structure; to learn to analyze and critically evaluate ideas, arguments and points of view, by synthesizing and discerning what is most important.
Additional goals for art history students in upper-level seminars are: to learn to analyze and critically evaluate traditions as systems and constructions of knowledge and power; to develop writing and research skills, competencies and points of view necessary in the field of Art History; to develop creative capacities in oral and written expression using the full resources of language in invention, drafting, revising, and editing.