Overview

Journey through the history of Western art: explore masterpieces of art and architecture from antiquity to the present day, using New York City as your campus.

This course will explore the major artists, movements, cultures, and ideas that have shaped the history of Western art through a combination of lectures and tours of New York City museums and architectural monuments. Site visits and behind-the-scenes access will provide unique opportunities to explore famous works of art and architecture in a way that only this city can offer.

Students will start by studying the antiquities collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, from the famed Egyptian Temple of Dendur to Greek and Roman statues. Students will learn about art from the medieval through the Gothic periods at The Cloisters and the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine; the art of the Renaissance, Baroque, and Enlightenment at The Met and The Frick Collection; Impressionism through Modernism at the Museum of Modern Art and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum; the rise of the modern metropolis through a walking tour of midtown and a visit to the Empire State Building; and contemporary art at the Whitney Museum and by going behind the scenes at New York City galleries. Over the course of this journey, students will gain a framework for understanding different styles and concepts that have shaped the history of Western art as well as the hot topics that remain important to artists today.

Site Visits:
Visits will include a combination of trips to major New York City art museums and architectural monuments, as well as artists’ studios and other places of business related to contemporary art practice and art markets. In the past, site visits have included:

  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art & The Cloisters
  • The Museum of Modern Art
  • The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
  • The Frick Collection
  • SIA: Beacon
  • The Cathedral of Saint John the Divine
  • The Empire State Building
  • New York City galleries, such as Gagosian and Hauser & Wirth

Guest Speakers:
Students will hear firsthand from art historians, museum curators, and gallery owners about the topics that shape our understanding of art history and contemporary art production. Guest speakers may include:

    • Museum curators
    • Gallery owners
    • Art history scholars
    • Art critics
    • Architects
    • Artists

Please note: This information is subject to change at any time at the discretion of Sotheby’s Institute of Art.

Cost and Session Information

PRICE: $4,995* ($5,595* for residential students)
DATES: July 3 - July 17
TYPE: Intensive
LOCATION: New York City

*Listed program costs do not include course-specific lab and materials fees. Learn more on our website.

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