Art History

The Department of Art History at the Tyler School of Art and Architecture offers four dynamic and broad-based degree programs—all with an interdisciplinary and global perspective—that equip students with the skills needed for a wide range of careers in a world where visual literacy is vitally important.

Guided by faculty members with diverse areas of expertise, Tyler Art History students have access to both the resources of one of the nation’s top art schools and Temple, a large research university. 

Vision for the Department: An Open and Public Statement
In solidarity with Black Lives Matter, the Department of Art History affirms that Black arts matter, the experiences of Black students in our classrooms matter, and studying Black art and culture matters. In the coming academic years, we are committed to making changes in order to center the art and culture of BIPOC communities, to work for an anti-racist and decolonial art history, and to make space for BIPOC students to feel welcome and included in our classrooms.

Faculty areas of research
In the past several years, the department has made hires that have expanded areas of research taught by tenure-track faculty. We will continue to center diversity in our faculty hires and to support a global perspective on Art History.

Regular opportunities to involve and listen to students
The department is developing both formal and informal fora for open communication and discussion with undergraduate and graduate students. We actively promote, recruit, and support diversity in the Art History student population.

Changes in the curriculum
The department is committed to constant review and revision of the overall curriculum and courses within the department, beginning with the introductory and General Education classes offered.

Faculty will continue to examine how their upper-level lectures and seminars can examine the intersection of art history with race, colonialism, and imperialism.

Faculty will continue to expand internship opportunities, articulating educational expectations and respectful working conditions governing the training and treatment of students. We will seek out hosts that demonstrate Tyler’s values of inclusion and equity. We will investigate funding so that internships are available to a wider range of students.

Pedagogy and training on diversity and inclusion for all faculty and students
The department is committed to anti-bias training with The Office of Institutional Diversity, Equity, Advocacy and Leadership (IDEAL).

The department is committed to hold seminars to discuss challenging experiences in the classroom, to read texts on anti-racism and decolonization in art history, and to host guest scholars committed to this work. These seminars are intended to open a space for greater transparency between faculty and students and for the community to continue learning how to decolonize the field.

Building and nurturing inter-departmental, cross-departmental, and university- wide relationships
We encourage all members of the Art History Department to attend programming and take classes in other departments on campus that are already doing work to address racial justice, such as the departments of Africology and African-American Studies, American Studies, History, Religious Studies, and Spanish and Portuguese.


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Upcoming Events


  • Taylor Elyea (BA Art History 2020) appointed Registrar Assistant, the Frick Collection

    Taylor Elyea, a 2020 alum, went on to complete her MA at Georgetown University in Art and Museum Studies, with a focus on Collections Management. While at Temple, she...

  • Joseph Kopta (PhD Candidate) to speak at University of Zurich Workshop on "Purple in Medieval Manuscripts"

    Joseph Kopta (PhD Candidate) will speak at the workshop "Shades of Purple: Purple Ornament in Medieval Manuscripts" at the University of Zurich, Switzerland, on Novemb...

  • Joseph R. Kopta receives Tyler Art History Graduate Teaching Award 2020/21

    Joseph R. Kopta (PhD candidate) received the Art History Graduate Teaching Award for 2020/21. Joe has taught at every level in the undergraduate program, including mos...

  • Undergraduate
    Alumni Spotlight

    Laura Turner Igoe

    Laura Turner Igoe (PhD, 2014) is the Curator of American Art at the James A. Michener Art Museum in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. She specializes in American art and material culture of the long 19th century. Laura is the coeditor of A Greene Country Towne: Philadelphia’s Ecology in the Cultural Imagination and she has contributed essays to the journals American Art, Panorama, Common-place, and the exhibition catalogue Nature’s Nation: American Art and Environment. At the Michener, she curated Impressionism to Modernism: The Lenfest Collection of American Art (2019) and the current exhibition, Through the Lens: Modern Photography in the Delaware Valley. More