ChooseWhy Choose This Program?
Why Study Visual & Material Culture at Goucher?
This program is a 21st-century approach to art history and preservation. The curriculum expands upon these disciplines to include the examination and role of images, objects, architecture, and knowledge as not only reflections of history, but actors that made history. Billboards, Instagram, fashion, urban green spaces—they all tell a story. Our students learn what those stories are by investigating the meaning and purpose behind everything that people and societies create as ways to express emotion and thought.
LearnWhat Will You Learn?
What Will You Learn?
Hands-on learning in the field is essential to this program. Our program uses the Baltimore area as a “learning lab,” in which the built environment, museums, architectural landscape, urban green spaces, and monuments provide opportunities to experience the multi-faceted ways in which people understand, shape, and respond to the world through art and material culture. Additionally, students examine artifacts and rare books in our Special Collections and Archives and build focus exhibitions from our Art and Artifact Collection, which contains over 3,000 pieces. Learn More
DoWhat Will You Do?
What Will You Do?
Local internship opportunities at Maryland Historical Society, Preservation Maryland, Maryland State Archives, Walters Art Museum, Maryland Art Place, and Baltimore Museum of Art prepare students for varied careers in the arts while challenging them to think about where they see themselves after graduation, whether that’s museum curation, artifact preservation, or the nonprofit art sector. Additional programs at Goucher—such as a concentration in arts administration or a certificate in secondary education—also help students find careers managing or teaching the arts.
Full-Time & Half-Time Faculty
Gail Husch, Professor of Visual and Material Culture: 19th-Century European and American Painting and Sculpture, American Apocalyptic Imagery
April Oettinger, Associate Professor of Visual and Material Culture: 15th- and 16th-century Venetian Art, Italian Renaissance Art and Literature, History of the Book
Allyn Massey, Associate Professor, Art and Visual and Material Culture
Matthew McConville, Professor, Art and Visual and Material Culture
Laura Burns, Assistant Professor, Art and Visual and Material Culture: Photography, Contemporary Art, Curatorial Practices
Rick Delaney, Assistant Professor, Art and Visual and Material Culture: Digital Media, Printmaking
Pam Thompson, Professor, Art and Visual and Material Culture
Professor Emeritus or Emerita or Emeriti
Jeffrey Myers, Associate Professor of English: Shakespeare and the Visual Arts in the Renaissance
Arnold Sanders, Associate Professor of English: Medieval literature, expository writing, literary theory, archives
Goucher’s Visual Material & Culture program, in collaboration with the Arts Administration Program, offers a three-week study-abroad course, "The Arts of Amsterdam: Arts Administration in Amsterdam." A course focused on global contemporary art and the Venice Biennale (based in Venice) is under development. Students may also elect to study art history at Goucher approved semester-long programs in a number of countries including Italy, France, Denmark, Scotland, and West Africa.
Visit the Office of International Studies for more information.
Opportunities & Internships
Internships for college credit are possible through established relationships with
area museums, arts organizations, artists, galleries, and design studios, as well
as through professional relationships researched by the student. These provide students
with hands-on experience and help them establish professional contacts. Certain courses
are open to Goucher students at a consortium of institutions, including the Johns
Hopkins University, Maryland Institute College of Art, and Towson University.
The Spencer Award
The Eleanor Spencer Award is granted each year to a rising sophomore who has declared
a major in art history or studio art. It funds outstanding research projects requiring
travel to complete. Proposals are submitted to the department chair early in the spring
semester and are reviewed by the department faculty.
Major & Career Exploration
Graduate & Professional School
- Image associated with "The Book as Art: Fine Press Books in the Goucher College Library at Athenaeum - Upper Level"January 28, 2019
This exhibit represents the work of students who participated in Book Studies 383: The Art and History of the Book in fall 2018. In collaboration with the staff of Goucher’s...
- Image associated with "The Book as Art: Fine Press Books in the Goucher College Library Opening Event at Athenaum - Upper Level (4th Floor)"February 7, 2019
The exhibit opening event will be held on February 7, 2019 from 6pm to 8pm and feature a brief discussion by some of the student curators and light fare. This exhibit...