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This three-module survey course introduces participants to the rich history of Western Art, providing the opportunity to learn how to understand and interpret major works of art within their historical context. Join leading art historians and experts at Sotheby’s Institute of Art to journey through the years 1200-1960, from the emergence of Gothic art and architecture in northern Europe through every major art movement of the subsequent centuries.

Focusing on Western art, this course considers successive styles in chronological order, the major centers of art from Florence to Paris, London and New York, and the key figures who forged the art world around them. Immersing themselves in the worlds of the greatest European and American artists, participants will not only explore the art, but also the religious, social, economic and political events and movements that influenced its creation.

Suitable for beginners as well as those with prior knowledge looking to deepen their understanding and appreciation of Western Art between the medieval period and the 1960s. Minimum age 18.

Each module includes:

  • Certificate of participation upon completion of the course.
  • Three eight-week terms, with a half-term break during each course;
  • Two expert lectures with time for questions and discussions each week;
  • One or more expert-led visits per term to London-based collections;
  • A ‘hands on’ workshop examining historical paints and pigments;
  • Learning in the Institute's historic Georgian townhouse campus at the heart of Bloomsbury;
  • Certificate of participation on completion of the course.


Autumn 2019: History of Western Art 1: Medieval and Renaissance
Spring 2020: History of Western Art 2: Baroque to Romanticism
Summer 2020: History of Western Art 3: Impressionism to Modernism

The Details
  • Course Dates

    Course Dates

    Autumn 2019: Medieval and Renaissance
    1, 8, 15, 29 October and 5, 12, 19, 26 November 2019 (term break 22 October)

    Spring 2020: Baroque to Romanticism
    28 January; 4, 11, 25 February, and 3, 10, 17, 24 March 2020 (term break 18 February)

    Summer 2020: Impressionism to Modernism
    5, 12, 19 May and 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 June 2020 (term break 26 May)

    Day Course: Tuesday mornings; 10.30am-1pm

    Venue: The course will take place at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, 30 Bedford Square, London, WC1B 3EE.
  • Faculty


    To be announced.
  • Course Fees

    Course Fees

    Module 1 (Autumn 2019): £625 (Register by September 17, 2019 for 10% off)
    All 3 Modules
    (Autumn, Spring, and Summer): £1,725 (Register by September 17, 2019 for 10% off)

    Click here to register now and pay online.
    Click here to read Terms and Conditions.

    Payment by credit or debit card only. If you prefer to pay by wire transfer or cheque, please contact:
    Jessica Foyle Public Programmes Coordinator
    T +44 (0)20 7462 3239 or
  • Course Timetable

    Course Timetable

    To be announced.
  • FAQ


    Click here to read Short Courses FAQ.
  • Further Information

    Further Information

    For further information, please contact:
    Jessica Foyle Public Programmes Coordinator
    T +44 (0)20 7462 3239 or

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