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Art History

Student teaching a group about Art in the Kimbell Museum.

 

The TCU School of Art offers a Master of Arts, Bachelor of Arts and a minor in art history.

 

Bachelor of Arts in Art History

As an art history student, you will learn about art in the world-class museums of Fort Worth and Dallas and gain the skills necessary to compete successfully in today’s changing job market. The foundation in liberal arts and humanities that art history provides is essential to becoming a life-long learner and educated global citizen. Classes promote skills in critical inquiry and the ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing. Research and creative projects enhance problem-solving skills.

Because the art history program is part of a department that includes practicing artists and designers, you’ll work side-by-side with students majoring in studio art, art education and graphic design. Art history students get to know each other better through the Art History Club, which has sponsored a behind-the-scenes look at the world-class Kimbell Art Museum, guest speakers and tours of special exhibitions.

Qualified students may be elected to membership in Kappa Pi Honorary Art Fraternity.

The art history program regularly invites internationally recognized scholars and leaders of art institutions to present their work to students and faculty. Recent speakers have included Volker Depkat (University of Regensberg); Flavin Judd (Judd Foundation); John Varriano (Mount Holyoke College); Ed Uhlir (Millennium Park, Chicago); Meredith Martin (New York University); Beatriz González-Stephan (Rice University); Daniel Sherman (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill); Catherine Craft (Independent Scholar); Judith Mann (St. Louis Art Museum); Donna Sadler (Agnes Scott College); Amelia Jones (University of Southern California) and Melissa Hyde (University of Florida).

To learn more about the art history program at TCU, contact:

Lori Diel
Division Coordinator
l.diel@tcu.edu

See the course catalog for a complete list of degree requirements, course offerings and descriptions.

 

Minor in Art History

Students who major in another subject but who have an interest in the history of art and wish to obtain depth in the subject should minor in art history.

See the course catalog for a complete list of degree requirements, course offerings and descriptions.

 

Master of Arts in Art History

The Master of Arts program gives students a deeper understanding of the history of art, its objects and its methods. Courses focus on the areas of specialization of our faculty: art of the ancient Americas, colonial Latin American art, 18th and 19th-century American and European art, Renaissance and Baroque art, history of photography, and contemporary art. An integral component of this program, which sets it apart from many others, is the museum experience — studying in art museums and working with museum professionals.

The art history program is closely linked to the Amon Carter Museum of Art, Kimbell Art Museum, Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth and Sid Richardson Museum. The Dallas Museum of Art, Nasher Sculpture Center, Meadows Museum, African-American Museum, McKinney Avenue Contemporary, Nasher Sculpture Center, and the Trammel and Margaret Crow Collection of Asian Art exhibit outstanding works and continually offer provocative symposia and lecture programs. Classes regularly meet at the museums to examine and discuss specific works of art; often a course will be held at an art museum, rather than on campus, for the entire semester.

Centering on the art object, TCU art history students expand their knowledge of the historical, stylistic and theoretical dimensions of the visual arts, while having the invaluable experience of engaging directly with art objects. Graduates of the program will be prepared to engage in work at the Ph.D. level and pursue careers in the teaching and museum professions, as well as other art-related fields.

Graduate students in the art history program benefit from generous funding. Each year, four to six applicants are awarded full-tuition waivers along with stipends of up to $10,000. Among these stipends are the prestigious Kimbell Fellowships awarded through the College of Fine Arts Graduate School.

Applying to MA Program

Prerequisites: BFA, or equivalent, including a concentration in your intended specialty as evidenced by appropriate credit, an acceptable portfolio of work, a statement of professional experience and goals, and letters of recommendation.

Learn more about the admissions process for the MA.

See the course catalog for a complete list of degree requirements, course offerings and descriptions.

 

Travel Opportunities for Graduate Students

TCU art history graduate students can compete for research travel grants from the Mary Jane and Robert Sunkel Art History Endowment. Recent Sunkel grants have funded graduate student travel to New York; San Francisco; Washington, D.C.; Paris; London; Dresden; Italy; Mexico; and Cuba.

See the course catalog for a complete list of degree requirements, course offerings and descriptions.

“At many universities, art history majors pursue their studies isolated from other disciplines and even art objects themselves. In retrospect, I think the best thing about my experience at TCU as an art history major ended up being the many connections I was able to make between my studies and other disciplines, from literature and music to philosophy and science. At the same time, taking studio art classes and having access to several outstanding museums ensured that my academic studies had a real connection to the ongoing process of making and displaying art.”

Catherine Craft, B.A. ’87 | Independent scholar and adjunct assistant curator, Nasher Sculpture Center; author of An Audience of Artists: Dada, Neo-Dada, and the Emergence of Abstract Expressionism (University of Chicago Press, 2012)

 

The visual arts are among the oldest and most important means for humans to communicate and express their experiences, beliefs, desires and feelings. The study of the history of art allows you to enlarge your worldview by gaining an understanding of why different cultures at different times created works of art that fascinate, perplex, challenge and delight. To place a work of art into its historical context, you’ll also learn about history, literature, philosophy and religion.

The high quality of teaching and a wealth of resources make TCU’s art history program distinctive. Our BA and MA degrees help undergraduate majors, minors and graduate students gain a deeper understanding of the history of art, its objects, its methods, its meanings and its contexts.

Our faculty are active in their fields of expertise, writing articles and books, participating in museum exhibitions, lecturing nationally and internationally and working with museums and galleries on various projects. Small class sizes promote close student-faculty interaction. Students also assist professors with research, conduct independent studies and intern at area museums.

Course Catalog

Undergraduate

An integral component of TCU’s art history program, which sets it apart from many others, is studying in renowned art museums. The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex is a lively and thriving community where the arts play a vital role.

Centering on the art object, TCU art history students expand their knowledge of the historical, stylistic and theoretical dimensions of the visual arts, while having the invaluable experience of engaging directly with art objects.

Qualified undergraduates may serve as museum interns, while graduate students serve a semester-long internship as part of their degree requirements at institutions such as the Kimbell Art Museum, the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, the Nasher Sculpture Center, Meadows Museum and The Dallas Museum of Art.

The art history program is closely linked to the Amon Carter Museum, Kimbell Art Museum, Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth and Sid Richardson Museum. The Dallas Museum of Art, Nasher Sculpture Center, Meadows Museum, African-American Museum, McKinney Avenue Contemporary, Nasher Sculpture Center, and the Trammel and Margaret Crow Collection of Asian Art exhibit outstanding works and continually offer provocative symposia and lecture programs. Classes regularly meet at the museums to examine and discuss specific works of art; often a course will be held at an art museum, rather than on campus, for the entire semester.

Learn more about the museum experience at TCU.

 

Graduate 

Each graduate student will complete a semester-long internship in an art museum or related institution. The objective of the internship is to gain practical experience of working in an arts institution. The internship may take a variety of forms in a range of departments, but will afford the student to make a tangible contribution to the arts profession.

Recent graduate students completed internships in the curatorial, education, editorial, development, public relations, archival and registrar departments at the following institutions:

Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth

Artspace, San Antonio

Asheville Museum of Art, North Carolina

Dallas Museum of Art

Fort Worth Community Arts Center

Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles

Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth

Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth

Morgan Library, New York

Sid Richardson Museum, Fort Worth

Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Italy

Internships

Our art history majors land jobs as teachers and professors, researchers, executive directors, museum/gallery administrators, art writers, gallery owners and curators, while others use the skills learned in their art history courses in a variety of careers outside the arts, such as law and public relations.  See a sampling of where our students go after graduation:

National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, D.C.

National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.

Christie’s, New York

Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth

Norwood Gallery, Austin

Savannah College of Art and Design

Career Preparation