UCL History of Art

History of Art at UCL is a research-led department with an international reputation for rigorous teaching programmes at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. In  the last Research Assessment Exercise (2008)  the department submitted 100% of its teaching staff and achieved the outstanding result of having 80% of its work judged at the 4* or 3* level. The research produced in the department was recognized as world leading and internationally excellent. The research environment was also recognised as diverse, dynamic, and innovative.

The Department’s academic focus is on research and teaching excellence within a chronological span from c. 1350 to the present in relation to the art of the western tradition and its global encounters.  Research strengths include:

  • renaissance and early modern studies
  • the historical relation of art and science
  • the history of print culture
  • architectural history
  • cross-cultural studies and globalisation
  • materials, objects and practices of art history
  • historiography and the history of the discipline
  • modern and contemporary art

The Department is recognised for its long-standing commitment to critical theory. Our research engages with active debates around phenomenology, film theory, psychoanalytic theory, and Marxist and feminist traditions of art history. More information about the Department is available here

The Department is also host to the Centre for the Study of Contemporary Art. The Centre seeks to generate debate concerning those pressing questions facing the contemporary condition of art, as well as providing a valuable space in which to work through the complex trajectories of contemporary art’s long history. Engaging with the work being done by postgraduate students and staff in the department, the Centre provides a place to think, theorise and historicise contemporary art, exploring what it has become in light of the complex global, historical, social and political aspects of its current expanded field. More information about the Centre is available here


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