Michigan State University
Michigan State University
Department of Art, Art History, and Design



Students of Art History and Visual Culture seek to investigate the production, form, and reception of images and objects, past and present, from a multi-cultural perspective, incorporating painting, sculpture, and architecture as conventionally defined by Art History but extending beyond these boundaries to material culture and a wide range of media. Art History and Visual Culture poses questions regarding the social, economic, religious, philosophical and psychological influences affecting those who consume as well as those who produce images and objects. Broadly defined, we ask how values and beliefs are given material form and how these forms themselves can be interpreted. Cognate study provides additional opportunities to explore visual culture from the perspectives of a wide range of fields.  Many Art History students also enroll in the Museum Studies Minor and find employment and internship opportunites at the Broad MSU, the MSU Museum, and the Department of Art, Art History, and Design Galleries.


Successful graduates have gone on to internationally prestigious M.A. and Ph.D. programs in Art History and pursued careers in teaching, museums, galleries, historic preservation, and non-profit arts organizations. Undergraduate majors find wide-ranging opportunities to use their visual skills in fields such as marketing, advertising, and consulting.

Program Overview