Exhibition and Display of Art and Material Culture

MA in Visual Arts Administration

Exhibition and Display of Art and Material Culture

London, UK

June 9 - 22, 2019

Program description:
The course is a survey that examines contemporary issues in the exhibition and display of art and material culture. The theory that underpins practice is considered within thematic groups: art world ecosystems; typologies and frameworks for exhibition making; curatorial roles; interpretation; authenticity, and identity; establishing value; and spectacle. Examples are drawn from an international selection of museums, galleries, periodic exhibitions, and heritage sites. The discussion framework includes the physical and conceptual contexts, motivations, and educational goals that shape interpretation and presentation. There are lecture/ discussions, site visits and guest speakers.


Students develop an interdisciplinary approach to connecting historical precedents with current examples of mainstream and alternative strategies of display. Analysis and critique of exhibitions and how they relate to the issues is the main methodology for course discussions and assignments. Students become familiar with advanced theories and approaches to formulate valid, broad-based critique and evaluation. There are readings, oral and written reports, and a final paper. Enrollment is limited to 15 students.


London is at its peak as an international center for art and heritage activity. Generous government funding over the last ten years has generated an unprecedented building and renovation boom in museums, accompanied by innovative programming and educational outreach. This has coalesced with the supercharged global art market to make the city an exciting, multifaceted venue for this study. Possible site visits include Sir John Soane's Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Tate Modern, the British Museum, the Serpentine Gallery, the Institute of Contemporary Arts and a for-profit contemporary art gallery.

Exhibition and Display of Art and Material Culture
ARVA-GE 2027 • 3 points

For more information and to apply visit Steinhardt Global Programs

Program Administration: Office of Academic Initiatives and Global Programs, The Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, New York University, 82 Washington Square East, 5th Floor, New York, NY 10003-6680; (212) 992-9380; steinhardt.global@nyu.edu