What Degree Do I Need to Work in an Art Museum?

Art|Art Museum

Working in an art museum requires a combination of passion, knowledge and skill. A degree is not always necessary to gain employment in an art museum; however, having a degree can make you more competitive and give you an edge over other applicants.

To work in an art museum, you must have a thorough knowledge of art history and have the ability to research, evaluate, curate and present artwork. You should also be skilled in writing, as many occupations within this field require the ability to write grant applications, press releases and other documents.

A degree in art history is the most common route for those looking to enter into the world of art museums. An undergraduate degree program offers courses that explore the history of visual arts from ancient cultures to modern times.

Students can gain an understanding of the different genres of art including painting, sculpture and installation pieces. During these programs, students learn how to critically analyze works of art and develop their own research skills by studying primary sources such as letters or photographs from a particular artist or period.

Graduate programs offer more specialized courses which often focus on one particular area such as modern art or Italian Renaissance painting. It is also possible to obtain a Master’s Degree in Museum Studies which covers topics such as collections management, exhibition design, conservation techniques and outreach activities. Earning a master’s degree can make you more competitive for certain positions within an art museum such as curator or director.

Conclusion: The required level of education needed for employment in an art museum will depend on the position you are applying for; however a degree in Art History or Museum Studies can definitely be beneficial when seeking employment within this field.