Trace the story and significance of artworks.
What does an Art Historian do?
Art Historians study, discuss and restore art for a living. They use research, either their own or someone else’s, to preserve old artwork, fix damaged pieces or catalogue art for a museum show.
There are different directions you can take as an Art Historian. You might teach at a university, work as a Museum Curator, serve as a Art Buyer, work as an Antique Dealer, appraise art for an auction house or give art consultations for hotels. Each of these jobs comes with specific requirements but to do any job as an Art Historian means you need excellent research and writing skills.
You start all jobs with an evaluation of the piece you’re working with. You want to know where it came from, who made it, why it’s significant and what was happening in society at the time it was made. All this information lets you know the best way to handle the piece either by giving you an idea of how to fix it, or letting you know in what time period it should appear in a museum’s exhibit.
There are as many different forms of art as jobs for an Art Historian and you can choose to focus on one or have a general knowledge of many types from drawing to painting to sculpture. The preservation of some of these art forms calls for a more science minded approach such as carbon dating to tell when a piece was made or chemical testing to figure out the paint type used.