The graduate program in the Department of History of Art and Architecture offers a program of instruction that prepares students for teaching the history and theory of art at the college level, for museum work, and for independent research and writing. The department offers instruction in the following broad fields of the history of art and architecture:
- Greek and Roman
- East Asian
- Latin American
- Modern (eighteenth and nineteenth centuries)
Modern (twentieth century) and Contemporary
- Renaissance and Baroque (fifteenth through eighteenth centuries)
- South Asian
The graduate curriculum is designed to ensure breadth across the discipline, both in terms of field distribution and methodology.
The department regularly invites authorities from other universities and museums to offer instruction in Cambridge, and the M. Victor Leventritt Lecture brings outstanding authorities to the campus each year for lectures and meetings with students and faculty. The many colleges, museums, and commercial galleries in the greater Boston area provide a stimulating environment for study and research.
Collections of Western, Asian, and ethnographic art housed in Harvard’s museums enrich student training by providing fine original works of art for study. The Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies offers instruction in the history of techniques and materials. Harvard’s library holdings include more than 200,000 books on art and archaeology, more than 800,000 photographs and slides, and an extensive collection of rare books and manuscripts. Finally, students of history of art and architecture are encouraged to take full advantage of the University’s course offerings in the humanities and social sciences and the rich intellectual and cultural life of the campus at large.
No studio art is offered by the department.
While there are no specific prerequisites for admission, a strong language background helps to strengthen the application, and students who lack it should be aware that they will need to address these gaps during their first two years of graduate study.
Applicants must include a recent sample of written work with their online application.