Latin American Art History Graduate Programs

Pursuing a graduate degree in Latin American art history can enhance your existing degree and lead to more specific careers in the Art world. Learn about the different courses you could study and potential careers below. Schools offering Art degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

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Latin American Art History Graduate Programs

Most universities only offer art history graduate programs with special courses or concentrations in Latin American art available depending on the school; these courses can include pre-Colombian art, twentieth-century Latin American art, and colonial art of Latin America. To study Latin American art history at the graduate level, a bachelor's or master's degree in art history or related courses is required; typical program length is 2-5 years, depending on if it is an M.A. or Ph.D.

Pre-Colombian Art

Courses that study art from the pre-Colombian era explore the art and architecture of pre-Columbian Mesoamerica (Mexico and Central America). Students study well-known pieces from the era and their historical, political and religious context. Students also discuss how these pieces functioned as ideological statements from their respective time period.

Colonial Art of Latin America

Latin American colonial art courses study art from Spanish and Portuguese colonies from the 16th-19th centuries. Students will examine renaissance and baroque architecture from early metropolitan centers, as well as paintings and sculptures from the era. An additional focus on Mexico is also included.

Twentieth-Century Latin American Art

Courses in twentieth-century Latin American art study pieces and artists from this era that shaped modern art. Students will learn how Latin artists took inspiration from traditional European art trends and used their own techniques to create a unique Latin style. Concepts such as surrealism, adoption of universal trends versus the expression of unique national identities, the relationship between social realism and politics, and perception of the 'fantastic' in Latin American art will also be explored. Key artists of the time who made unique contributions and revolutionized modern Latin American art will be studied as well.

U.S. Latinx Art

U.S. Latinx art courses explore art from Latinx communities in the United States, beginning from the 18th century and through to the present. Major communities explored are Chicano/a/x, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Dominican, and Central American. Students will learn about the influence these communities had/have on architecture and urban planning, as well as popular paintings, sculptures, prints, photography, and video and performance.

Arts of Nineteenth-Century Mexico

Courses that study art from Mexico in the nineteenth-century teach students about major historical developments, key figures, and dominant themes associated with Mexican art production. Students will learn with an objective of tracing historical developments that resulted in the formation of a modern Mexico, discussing topics such as the independence movement and the Mexican Revolution. Additional topics include history painting, landscape painting, modern museology, popular print-making, and modernist tendencies in Mexican art.

Careers That Utilize an Art History Graduate Degree


An art history graduate degree program may prepare an individual for work at an art museum as a curator, or leader of the museum; they are like the face of the museum and represent it in the media. Curators who specifically lead art museums or an art department within a larger museum are responsible for selecting which pieces are shown in their museum; this includes negotiating prices or loan agreements, categorizing pieces for exhibition, and researching different pieces or collections. Someone with a knowledge of or specialization in Latin American art history may work well in museums that exhibit Latin American art, or entire museums dedicated to the subject.

Museum Technicians and Conservators

Technicians and conservators working in art museums may be called art preparators. They are responsible for restoring, maintaining, or preparing pieces for display, storage, or research. They may also identify and record pieces and install and arrange them for exhibits. Deep knowledge of art history is useful in this career because an individual must know how to recognize what era a piece is from in order to properly identify and/or restore it.

Art Critics

Art critics write reviews of art pieces from individual artists and/or galleries and exhibitions; these reviews are published in magazines, newspapers, academic journals, and art blogs, and are intended to expose a work of art and its artist to a widespread audience. They must know how to criticize a piece on various aspects, such as its visual appeal and interpretation, as well as the techniques used in the piece by the artist in order to give a thorough review. A degree in art history/Latin American art history would be useful for this career since knowledge of past artists, techniques, and artistic movements is required to give a professional and/or scholarly review.

Job Type Median Salary (2018) Job Outlook (2018-2028)*
Curators $49,465** 9%
Museum Technicians and Conservators $43,020*** 10%
Art Critics $43,490* -10%

Sources: *Bureau of Labor Statistics; **; ***O-Net Online

Individuals wishing to pursue a 2-5 year graduate degree in art history or specialization in Latin American art history should have a bachelor's degree or completed courses in art history or in a related field and will learn about topics such as pre-Colombian, colonial, and modern Latin American art. This knowledge can prepare them for careers such as museum curators, technicians, or conservators, and art critics.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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Popular Schools

  • Regent University

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  • University of Louisville

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