History of Art

University of Cambridge
In Cambridge (England)

Price on request

Important information

  • Bachelor's degree
  • Cambridge (England)
  • When:
    Flexible
Description

Overview History of Art at Cambridge Our course covers a wide spectrum of art and architecture, from the medieval to modern and contemporary periods. The aim is to foster a wide and deep understanding of art and architecture, and to help you develop visual literacy and awareness, as well as a range of critical and analytical skills. A treasury of resources There’s no substitute for looking at the real objects and we take full advantage of Cambridge’s outstanding resources, including the Fitzwilliam Museum and its picture conservation department, Kettle’s Yard and the Colleges’ art collections. The Department’s comprehensive library houses a rich collection of books, and you have access to the University Library and the Fitzwilliam Museum’s reference library (among others) as well. During vacations, travel is encouraged and College financial support is usually available (see individual College websites for details); we also organise study outings. Preparation We advise that you visit museums, exhibitions and buildings, such as churches or country houses, and take descriptive notes or sketches of what you see. Try to analyse the effect works of art or architecture have on you. If you're thinking of applying to study History of Art, you may like to read the following books: E H Gombrich The Story of Art H Honour and J Fleming A World History of Art D Watkin A History of Western Architecture Some familiarity with classical mythology and the Bible is invaluable for the study of the meaning of works of art. The admissions area of the Department website suggests other preparatory reading. Additional course costs Details Estimated cost Year 1 Required: stationary, printing, photocopying £5-£10 pw Year 2 Required: stationary, printing, photocopying £5-£10 pw Year 3 Required: stationary, printing, photocopying £5-£10 If you have any queries about resources/materials, please contact the Department (see fact file, right). Changing...

Important information

Requirements: Entry Requirements Typical offers require A Level: A*AAIB: 40-41 points, with 776 at Higher Level For other qualifications, see our main Entrance requirements pages. Course requirements Required by all Colleges: no specific subjectsRequired by some Colleges: A Level/IB Higher Level in an essay-based subject All undergraduate admissions decisions are the responsibility of the Cambridge...

Venues

Where and when

Starts Location
Flexible
Cambridge
1 Trumpington Street, CB2 1QA, Cambridgeshire , England
See map

What you'll learn on the course

IT
Works
Printing
Art
University

Course programme

Course Outline History of Art Course Outline

Teaching is provided through lectures, seminars and supervisions. First-year students typically have up to six hours of departmental teaching each week, as well as a supervision linked to your weekly reading and essays.

Particular attention is paid to the first-hand study of works of art – lectures and classes are regularly held in museums, taught by curatorial staff and other visiting experts – and you receive exceptional attention and support throughout your degree.

Assessment varies according to the paper being studied but typically includes written examinations and visual analysis tests (comparing and contrasting works of art), and a dissertation in Year 3.

Year 1 (Part I)

Part I provides you with a broad introduction to the history of art, and to the making and meaning of art objects, with special emphasis on the collections of the Fitzwilliam Museum. These run from the art of Ancient Egypt to modern times, and include major examples of medieval, Renaissance and post-Renaissance art as well as non-Western items.

During the year you take five compulsory papers and complete a short dissertation:

  • The Objects of Art History – a survey of art and architecture that introduces the history of art from antiquity to the modern era
  • The Making of Art – two papers covering issues of manufacture, technique and style in painting and sculpture in the context of their historical development
  • The Meaning of Architecture and Art – two papers concerned with how works of architecture and art are interpreted in light of cultural traditions
  • the short dissertation is 5,000 words on a work of art or architecture in or around Cambridge
Year 2 (Part IIA)

Part II deepens your knowledge and understanding by focusing in greater depth on specific issues.

In Part IIA, you take one compulsory paper along with two pairs of papers on Special Subjects:

  • Approaches to the History of Art – the compulsory paper covers the history of the discipline and its critical methodologies from antiquity to the present day
  • Special Subjects – chosen from a range of around 10, each pair deals with a particular person, subject or period. These currently include French medieval art and architecture, English Renaissance art and architecture, art and society in medieval Italy. British art and architecture, Russian painting, Surrealism, and post-1945 Modernism
Year 3 (Part IIB)

In Part IIB, you take one compulsory paper, two further pairs of Special Subjects papers and submit a dissertation:

  • The Display of Art – the compulsory paper explores the ways in which art is collected, displayed and experienced in society
  • Special Subjects – the options available are as those in Part IIA, but you take two subjects that you haven’t studied before
  • the dissertation is 7,000-9,000 words on a topic of your choice, as agreed with your Director of Studies

For further information about studying History of Art at the University of Cambridge see the Department of History of Art website.