About the undergraduate program
The study of art history is not simply about memorizing artists and artworks; rather, it is a lens through which to view and analyse the broader trends of history in general. Artworks are a unique medium through which artists, their patrons, their audiences, and their critics can communicate across time, allowing modern viewers to see the world through others’ eyes. What did people value? What did artists try to communicate through their work, both overtly and subliminally? How did they rationalize their world? The study of art history provides an avenue into exploring these questions.
As an art history major at Queens College, students will be exposed to art and artifacts across a broad array of time periods and geographic regions. The early emphasis of the program is on creating a comprehensive global foundation, upon which students will then pursue more specialized study. Because art history is one branch of the larger field of history, students will learn different kinds of historical inquiry and methods by taking additional courses in the History Department. Additionally, as part of the curriculum students will attain fluency in at least one important art historical language. The program culminates in a capstone lecture on a subject of the student’s choosing. The aim is to prepare students for both further education or professional fields in the arts such as museum curator, gallery director, art researchers, conservators or teachers.