The night cafe

Art History and Theory

Nau mai, haere mai!

"Art History and Theory courses increase enjoyment of art by increasing understanding and training you in observation thinking and writing.

There are great career opportunities for our graduates, many of whom have been successful in gaining positions in the art world. They have secured jobs in universities, polytechnics, schools, museums and libraries, as well as in journalism, marketing, tourism and heritage conservation."- Richard Bullen (Department Co-ordinator)

Why study Art History and Theory?

Art History and Theory are actually separate, though related subjects. Students may specialise in one of these or undertake a mixture of the two as part of their degree. They involve the study of visual culture and, in particular but not exclusively, 'fine art' images and objects. You will study various media including painting and drawing, architecture, sculpture, photography and printmaking, ceramics, furniture and weaving. Also, art institutions and practices, such as collecting, patronage, art education, art criticism and iconography are all considered.

Our courses reflect your lecturers' specialisations that include European art and other indigenous art, contemporary art, American art, East Asian art, Māori art, and architectural history. Some of the lecturers also specialise in subjects beyond Art History and Theory such as literature, anthropology, cultural studies, and aesthetics.

News and Announcements

Please note: Art History and Theory is now located on
Level 5, History Building.

Art History and Theory Undergraduate Essay Writing Prize 2014

All essays submitted for undergraduate courses in Art History and Theory will be eligible for the Art History and Theory Essay Writing Prizes.

The top essay for each course will go into the final, and in November a group of lecturers will read the essays and decide upon the winner and runner up.

As well as winning the Art History and Theory Undergraduate Essay Writing Prize for 2014, the winner will receive $150. Second prize $100.