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Announcement
December 4, 2020

Call for applications: MA in Art History program

Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts at the University of Houston

(1) MFAH Works on Paper Study Center. (2) Museo Nacional de Antropología. (3) MFAH Conservation Lab. (4) University of Houston Architecture, Design, & Art Library. Photos courtesy the University of Houston MA in Art History program.

Advanced art history foundation in a vibrant global arts city
The MA in Art History program at the University of Houston equips entering graduate students, whatever their undergraduate major, with a solid foundation in the discipline of art history—all within the context of a Tier-1 research university that affords close contact with the collections of major arts institutions. The degree provides an ideal foundation for curatorial work or further academic study in the field. Alongside their coursework, our graduate students are profoundly engaged in the city of Houston, a dynamic cultural center and gateway to the international art world. The degree program includes a significant number of electives, which enable students to craft an educational experience best suited to their individual needs and interests. It also enables them to take advantage of numerous high-quality funded internship opportunities that propel forward their career ambitions.

The MA in Art History program is located in the School of Art, where program participants have the unique privilege of developing their expertise in conversation with a peer group of MFA students working across the fields of painting, sculpture, photography, digital media, design, and experimental, interdisciplinary practices. Masters students have access to dedicated curatorial spaces for course or MA thesis-related projects, including space in our brand-new Elgin Street Studios facility, as well as a dedicated award to fund these curatorial projects.

Faculty and coursework
MA in Art History program faculty are dedicated to a close mentoring process in art historical research and writing. We have research specializations in Modern and Contemporary Art and Design of Europe and the Americas, Latino American Art and Urbanism, Art of the Ancient Americas, Northern European and Italian Medieval and Renaissance Art, 17th-Century Northern European Art, Museum Studies, Art Criticism, Critical Theory, and the History of Photography. Graduate students are introduced to art historical methodologies and historiography in small, graduate-only seminars. Learning abroad opportunities in Mexico City along with special object-based learning courses taught in situ with the premier collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and Menil Collection further enrich regular course offerings.

Current faculty: Nisa Ari, Dorota Biczel, Natilee Harren, Rex Koontz, H. Rodney Nevitt Jr., Judith Steinhoff, Roberto Tejada, Luisa Orto, Sandra Zalman

Recent guest speakers: Leah Dickerman, David Joselit, Mari Carmen Ramírez, Atreyee Gupta, Charlene Villaseñor Black, Aruna D’Souza, Caroline A. Jones, C. Ondine Chavoya, Thomas Crow, Susan Cahan, Douglas Crimp, Darby English, Katy Siegel, George Baker, Suzanne Hudson, Gloria Sutton, Jaleh Mansoor, Claire Bishop, Julia Bryan-Wilson, Peggy Phelan, Bryan Just.

Professional opportunities and financial support
Beyond a rigorous training in art history, the MA in Art History program values applied art historical work as an integral part of the graduate experience and has strong relationships with many of Houston’s world-class arts institutions. Year-long funded curatorial fellowships are awarded each year at the Menil Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and the University’s Blaffer Art Museum. Our students also have access to a funded position as Arts Editor of the highly-regarded literary journal Gulf Coast. The program provides additional opportunities for financial support, including salaried Instructional Assistant and Graduate Writing Fellow positions, and travel awards that support field work and conference presentations. Supplemental scholarships provide non-local and international students with low, in-state tuition rates.

Careers in the Arts
Through wide-ranging coursework options and high-quality internship opportunities, the MA in Art History program enables students to pursue an exciting variety of career options. Our graduates have gone on to complete PhDs and secure tenure-track professorships. Others have used the MA as a capstone professional degree to qualify for curatorial, education, and director positions in public museums and private galleries, or to pursue careers in arts publishing, education, librarianship, and management.

Priority application deadline is January 15. Please note: the GRE is not required for the 2021 application year. Visit the MA in Art History program website for more information.

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