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University of Glasgow: Art History: Collecting and Provenance in an International Context

Institution University of Glasgow View institution profile
Department School of Culture & Creative Arts
Web www.glasgow.ac.uk/
Study type Taught

Summary

This Masters programme offers an interdisciplinary approach to studying the history of collecting and collections from an international perspective. In particular, it focuses on the trajectory of artefacts through time and space and their historical legacy. Subjects covered include methodological approaches and legal issues relating to provenance and restitution, illegal trafficking of cultural objects, connoisseurship, taste, the patterns of collecting and viewing both private and public, and the politics of display. The programme will move the collective debate beyond the Western tradition.

This programme is unique to Scotland and the UK as it combines aspects of art history and law and places them in a broad international context.

You will learn from world-leading researchers and develop expert knowledge in this specialised area of art history.

  • Glasgow’s civic and university collections are some of the richest and most diverse in Europe and are of international standing. The University’s own Hunterian Museum and Art gallery is the oldest public museum in Scotland and has extensive holdings covering fine art, geology, anatomy and the history of medicine. Furthermore, the facilities at Kelvin Hall support object-based study as a number of courses will include handling sessions of the objects in the collections.
  • Work placement opportunities are offered within the programme on a competitive basis. In addition to Scottish institutions, work placements may take place at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C.
  • Our research forum provides you with a lively and stimulating introduction to methodological debates within art history. It provides a sense of art history’s own history as well as contemporary concerns and practice, examining the beliefs and values that have informed various forms of historical and visual analysis and enquiry. It is focused around a series of seminars or workshops run by members of staff and visiting academics.

You will take:

  • Three core courses
  • Three optional courses
  • Dissertation

Core courses

  • CULTURES OF COLLECTING - COLLECTING CULTURES
  • OBJECT BIOGRAPHY
  • PROVENANCE

Optional courses

(not all courses run every year)

  • ARCHAEOLOGICAL THEORY AND INTERPRETATION
  • APPROACHING THE ANCIENT WORLD THROUGH MATERIAL CULTURE
  • COLLECTING AND DISPLAY
  • INTRODUCTION TO MUSEOLOGY
  • INDEPENDENT STUDY
  • WORK PLACEMENT

Summer: April to September

  • DISSERTATION

The learning and teaching approaches covered in the programme include: lectures (built around case studies), seminars and discussions (supported by relevant published sources), handling sessions and supervision.

This Masters programme is intended to provide you with a strong foundation from which to embark upon a career in the visual arts, the art market, museums and galleries, and heritage and historic properties.

Graduates have gone on to hold positions in museums and galleries (both public and private) in the UK and have, more broadly, entered the commercial, cultural and heritage sectors in a number of roles. The programme also provides an excellent platform for you to move into PhD studies and an academic career.

MSc

University of Glasgow


The University of Glasgow is one of the UK’s most prestigious seats of learning, and the fourth oldest university in the English speaking world. Established in 1451 and recognised for its world-changing research and teaching, the University has inspired thinkers from eminent scientist Lord Kelvin and the father of economics Adam Smith, to Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon. 

Rankings

The University:

  • ranked joint 73rd in the world in the QS World University Rankings 2022
  • ranked joint 92nd in the world: Times Higher World University Rankings 2021
  • 95.9% of students in employment or further study 6 months after …
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