The Program’s two-year MA curriculum combines academic coursework, internships, co-curricular workshops, independent research, and international travel. Discussion, debate, and accessibility constitute core values of the Program, expressed in the roster of courses and workshops as well as in the Program’s collaboration with the Clark Art Institute’s Research and Academic Program, along with other units at the Clark, Williams, and partner museums.
The Program calls on distinguished local collections in the context of its courses, allowing students to work closely with objects, installations, and other art practices. Students are required to take classes across the broad range of fields in the history of art, even as they are also encouraged to develop specific fields of interest and allowing for more specialized study. The Program also introduces students to issues of methodology and interpretation in the history of art and curatorial practice, as well as training in expository writing, public presentations, and other skills associated with its foundational goal of educating a new generation of public intellectuals in the visual arts.
The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute hosts the Program and is its principal collaborator, setting an intense course of study within a renowned art museum and research institute. Graduate students form an integral part of a stimulating international community incorporating academics, curators, students, artists, and conservators. The Program is physically located at the Clark, and each student is assigned a carrel in the Clark’s Library.
Faculty and supervisors are drawn from the Williams Art Department, from the Williams College Museum of Art, and from the research and curatorial staff of the Clark, as well as from other affiliates.