Art History

Please note: Information on this page relates to the 2015 academic year unless otherwise specified.

This subject is taught by the School of Art History, Classics and Religious Studies.


From the rock paintings of aboriginal Australia to the work of contemporary artists using digital media—art history encourages you to think critically about art in all its forms. Art History at Victoria is a broad-based and comprehensive introduction to the history of visual art. You will not only learn about artists and art works, but also understand them as products of particular social and cultural situations.

An Art History major within the Bachelor of Arts (BA) starts with first-year courses giving a broad history of art as it unfolds in Europe, Asia, the Americas, and the Pacific. In second- and third-year courses you will study a range of art movements, from Renaissance and Baroque to Modernism and Postmodernism, and explore thematic approaches to the art of particular places and periods.

Victoria's Art History Programme teaches you to think critically, research independently, and write effectively. You will experience first hand the power of art, and realise its importance for humans as a way of giving meaning to their world.

Undergraduate information

Art History major requirements

  1. 40 points from ARTH 100-199
  2. 40 points from ARTH 200-299
  3. 40 points from ARTH 300-399
  4. 20 further points from ARTH 200-399 or approved substitute

Postgraduate information

Postgraduate Qualifications in Art History

For information specific to Art History, please see our Postgraduate Study page. For information about the postgraduate qualifications, please click on the Faculty links below.

How to find out more and staff contacts

You can order more information on this subject using our Request for Study Material form.

Victoria's Student Recruitment, Admission and Orientation Office offers advice on courses and help with planning your degree.

Contact the Humanities and Social Sciences' Faculty Student and Academic Services Office for information on admission, qualifications and courses, course advice and selection criteria, exemptions and prerequisites.

Art History courses are taught within the School of Art History, Classics and Religious Studies. The Art History Office is located in Old Kirk 306, Old Kirk Building, Kelburn campus.

Meet staff who teach in the Art History Programme staff, or contact:

Annie Mercer
School Manager
Phone: 0-4-463 5807

Pippa Wisheart
Programme Administrator
Phone:0-4-463 5800

Related subjects and careers

Related Subjects Careers

Classical Studies
Cultural Anthropology
English Literature
Māori Studies
Media Studies
Pacific Studies
Religious Studies

Art critic/writer
Art education
Art historian
Film industry
Gallery owner

List of courses

Please note: the list of courses displays undergraduate– and postgraduate–level courses for this subject.

View list of courses