Based at our Kensington campus in the heart of London, our MA in Art History and Visual Culture programme will prepare you for an exciting creative career in the art world or more study in the visual arts. This programme puts a spotlight on intercultural issues in art history and visual culture, and professional practice in the visual arts.
It’s a fantastic location in Kensington where you’ll be based studying this programme, so close to the Victoria and Albert Museum, Design Museum, Saatchi Gallery, and many more art galleries and institutions are located right in the centre of London. Having such ease of access to London’s world- class art galleries, museums, libraries and art institutions is vital to the foundation of this course.
Study one Master’s programme and you’ll gain two degrees, one from the UK and one from the US. The choice is yours, it can be taken in one year full-time or over two years, part-time.
Our programme combines theory and practical skills, beginning in the first semester with an exploration of the history of art and a comparative exploration of art around the world. This is combined with an investigation of research methods, developing skills which are invaluable to a future employer.
The second semester focuses on contemporary arts, using London as the backdrop to bring these alive in a vivid way. The programme continues with a study of visual cultures, with the option to choose specialisms from such topics as Curating, Art Education and the International Art Market.
You’ll have the choice in the final semester of doing either an internship with a dissertation or an extended research project, both great opportunities to provide hands-on experience to increase your employability.
London will be your inspiration. World class art and creative institutions, internationally renowned auction houses, dealers and critics, all combine to make up the unique London art scene. Added together with our small classes which are taught by highly qualified Professors, it’s an unparalleled opportunity.
Top 5 reasons to study this programme:
- Central London provides excellent location, at the hub of the arts world, attracting the best creative talents in the arts and design industries
- Gain practical skills that will prepare you for future employment and allow you to excel in the workplace
- Truly international: global cohort of students enhances perspectives and gaining a UK and US degree improves career chances
- Benefit from small classes (average 10–15 students) and full academic support from faculty engaged in leading research and professional practice in the creative and cultural industries
- Gain a competitive advantage with an accredited optional internship and research opportunity
Pearl Lam Galleries, Beijing Museum Educator, Musée de Louvre, Saatchi Gallery, Halcyon Gallery, October Gallery, White Cube, Windsor Castle, Aon Private Risk Management, Victoria & Albert Museum, University of Wisconsin-Madison, JPMorgan Chase, Seattle Art Museum, Guggenheim Museum – New York, Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art, Sotheby’s – New York, Christies – New York, MANA Contemporary – New York
PhD, Art History, University of York, University of the Arts, Florida State University, Harvard University, University of Illinois, American Art History, University of Iowa, University of Texas, University of Washington
Pearl Lam Galleries Beijing, Saatchi Gallery, Wallace Collection, National Trust, Barbican Centre, Artnet, Black Dog Publishing, Musei Civici Fiorentini, South London Gallery, Orleaans House Gallery, Lots Road Auctions, Sarah Myerscough Fine Art, October Gallery, Crow Indian Museum
We offer career support and advice through our Careers & Internships Office that will assist and guide you in your study choices to make sure you stand out from the crowd when you graduate. Through internships you will gain business acumen, beneficial work experiences and transferable skills which will give you a competitive advantage in a fast-paced working environment. Work while you study across 5 continents through our partners Connect123 and CRCC Asia with destinations in Spain, Argentina, South Africa, China, Japan, Vietnam and Australia.
A first degree in any discipline with a minimum classification of 2.2 (Lower Second Class Honours) or its international equivalent
Please refer to our Postgraduate How to Apply page for details on English Language requirements.
What our students say
“Richmond’s graduate campus in Kensington places students well within reach of some of the most important art institutions in the world. Encouraged to take advantage of the invaluable resources at our disposal, we are constantly exposed to the archives, artefacts and people driving the discipline forward.
Since my arrival, I’ve collaborated with Dr Wallis on a blog for ‘Aesthetica: The Art & Culture Magazine’, and taken on a position with the Research Department at the Victoria and Albert Museum where I assisted curators in preparation for the major Fall 2011 exhibition on Postmodernism.”
“I feel very fortunate to have been part of the Richmond community. The relationships I developed with my professors, who were always willing to go the extra mile, were invaluable to me as a student. The small, interactive classes meant that we were able to ask questions and engage in vigorous debate. The individually tailored research projects advanced my understanding of the global art scene and helped me to explore and expand my own interests.
After my MA, I worked as Exhibitions Assistant in photography at the National Portrait Gallery and then moved to the architecture department at the Victoria and Albert Museum. I am currently working as Artist and Client Registrar at White Cube, London.”
The program emphasis on intercultural art is particularly relevant to its location in London, which allows first-hand interaction with art and international perspectives. At the same time, the classroom focus on methodologies helped students with a wide variety of interests develop the tools necessary to conduct sophisticated research and an individual style. Kensington is centrally located to major museums and cutting-edge galleries, as well as incredible research libraries, all of which enriched classroom studies and provided opportunities to interact with curators and other professionals. The emphasis on practical applications of studies, multi-cultural approaches, and modern/contemporary art really puts students at the forefront of current developments in the field of art history.”
“The graduate experience at Richmond proved vital for my success as an art historian and museum professional. The MA in Art History and Visual Culture programme places students on the pulse of the art world, ensuring that they have access to premier institutions, world-renowned museum collections, and highly anticipated exhibitions. Graduate students are encouraged to participate in critical analysis and discussion with professors and peers, resulting in a positive and respectful learning environment.
While at Richmond, I obtained an internship with the National Trust for Historic Preservation and Conservation, which solidified my interest in collections management. I had a central role in documenting historic collections at five properties across the southeastern United Kingdom, including Ham House and Gardens, Rainham Manor, Red House, Two Willow Road, and Fenton House and Gardens. Through my internship and the Richmond community, I now have professional connections around the world.
Since graduating, I have become the Registrar for Collections at the Arkansas Arts Center. I have also been invited to speak at the annual American Alliance of Museums conference about my role in the museum.”