Not just for eccentrics, Art and Art History degrees are an increasingly attractive opportunity for many professionals nowadays. There are numerous skills to be earned from studying Art and its history, from critical thinking, aesthetics, interpersonal skills, non-verbal communication, analytical depth, as well as memory and pattern recognition.
Equally important, through art, you will be able to get a better understanding of human culture and the creative expression of humanity’s experience, from the beginnings of antiquity and up to contemporary art. Most importantly, besides the spiritual advantages, you also succeed in gaining a lucrative career path, with stability, flexibility and significant profit. But you'll have to work hard for it.
Examples of universities and colleges offering Art and Art History degrees:
- The University of Edinburgh, the UK
- Instituto Europeo Di Design, Italy
- HKU University of the Arts Utrecht, Netherlands
- SOAS University of London, the UK
- EAC Group - Artistic and Cultural Engineering, France
After completing an Arts degree, you can become a museum curator, art dealer, art consultant, art writer or art restorer.
While you might think that an art degree is not enough to pursue a career, you may find that, with the correct skill combination, you actually have a few solid options on the table to choose from:
1. Museum curator careers
Museums are one of the most popular employment sources for those who have completed an educational programme in Art and Art History. With your knowledge and skills, you should be able to fill in a number of museum positions. Some Art and Art History degree holders even build their careers as curators, tour directors, and managers in museums. You can even start out as an intermediary for a museum's head curator and climb up the ladder from there.
2. Art dealer careers
By combining your knowledge of art with some essential marketing and sales skills, you too can become an art dealer. This is ideal for students who are more action-oriented, as it involves traveling around the world to sell or acquire art pieces. On the other hand, if you are naturally good at sales and business, getting an additional degree in Art History can add significant value to your portfolio and career options. A study programme in Art and Art History can allow you to work for private collectors as well as museums and galleries all around the globe, as an international art dealer.
3. Art consultant careers
If you choose to explore Arts and Art History more thoroughly, you will be able to work as an art consultant. Whether it's for the government, an educational institution, or a private buyer, you can lend your expertise and offer advice regarding art acquisitions. This line of work can be immensely rewarding in terms of compensation and personal growth, not to mention the flexibility that comes with working freelance, project-based or on commission.
4. Writing careers
With an in-depth knowledge of Art and Art History and the creative writing skillset associated with a degree in Arts, you may even try out for a position as a writer. You could choose to work as a writer, editor or columnist for newspapers, magazines, online portals or even broadcasting networks, by covering topics related to art. There are many publications focusing on the story behind great works of art. After having completed a study programme in Art and Art History and gathering experience in the industry, you could even decide to use your knowledge to publish your own theories regarding the world of art.
5. Art restorer careers
If you have some technical skills and like contributing to the conservation of art, you can choose to specialise as an art restorer. Either by enrolling in a specialised Master’s programme or completing your existing degree with short courses, you can get a professional qualification that will allow you to work on repairing paintings, sculptures, antique books, music recordings or even architectural masterpieces from antiquity to the present.
Advanced studies in the field of Art
If you are not too keen on working fresh after graduating, you might want to continue your higher education and enrol in a doctoral degree programme in Art and Art History. This can help you pursue the line of research in your speciality, paving your way to becoming an art critique, art history professor or even an accomplished artist yourself.
This way, when you look at the night sky, whether you want to paint it, take an artistic picture or buy the Van Gogh painting, you can get the best start by enrolling in an Art and Art History study programme abroad.