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About the Department of Art History and Archaeology

We live in a world of images and objects.

The Department of Art History and Archaeology prepares students to examine, interpret and evaluate the densely visual world in which we live today. We study monuments, objects and spaces of visuality across time and among the world’s cultures, engaging with the materiality of created things and the modes of inhabiting spaces. Our students learn to situate art in the context of its original creation and to consider its meaning and reception both within that context and during its subsequent histories of collecting, display and interpretation. Students investigate visual objects and environments as communicative forms created in response to particular political, social, religious and economic circumstances, and interrogate how these objects, in turn, further shape the worlds of which they are a part. 

The Department of Art History and Archaeology is committed to an inclusive approach to visual and material culture that considers art within and shared between the cultures of the globe. Students are prepared for careers in arts and cultural management, museum work, the art market, art law, marketing and communications and other kinds of teaching, research and analysis involving critical thinking about the visual world.

Interim Chair

Steven Mansbach

Distinguished University Professor and Professor of the History of Twentieth-Century Art, Art History and Archaeology

4226 Parren J. Mitchell Art-Sociology Building
College Park MD, 20742