Art history

Art History courses online and in London

Looking to build your confidence in discussing and interpreting art? Or are you interested in taking your established knowledge of art in new directions? Then come and join City Lit’s Art History learning community!

Our exceptional range of courses, both introductory and in-depth, are designed for all learning levels. Our programme approaches art history from a variety of perspectives including social and cultural context, art theory and philosophy, curation and collecting, general art appreciation and so much more.

Choosing the right class for you

Our courses are open to all. Our students come from all backgrounds and learning experiences, from the absolute beginner to those refining their knowledge and understanding. We aim to give you the confidence to engage meaningfully with art, whatever level you are working from. Our students use our courses for personal fulfilment as well as professional and educational development. Many of our students go on to advanced degree and certificate programmes and many are able to use their knowledge in art making and gallery work.

Learn from expert tutors

At City Lit we are proud of the expertise of our tutors who are all professional art historians working actively in museums, galleries, research and writing, universities and auction houses. As experts in the field, they are able to provide you with the support and guidance you need to develop your art historical knowledge. As teachers they provide student-focused education, helping students achieve their art historical goals, both the personal and the professional.

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Courses available both in-person and online

We offer a range of courses allowing you to choose between online and in-person learning. All our courses are live, interactive, and taught by expert tutors. No matter how you prefer to learn, we've got the class for you. See our guide to online learning for more information about accessing our live online courses.

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  1. Friday lates: Jean-Michel Basquiat: painting history
    Last Few Places, Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 3 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Explore how Jean-Michel Basquiat used art history, from Ancient Africa to Abstract Expressionism, to dialogue with contemporary culture and issues of racism, money and fame.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  2. Lunchtime lecture: Winter Sun: Nancy Holt's land art
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 8 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Join us for an introduction to the work of Nancy Holt, one of the foundational figures of the land art movement.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £8.00 Concession £7.00
  3. Art history taster
    Course start date:  Fri 10 Feb 2023 (and 4 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Curious about art history? Join us for this taster session where we explore different ways into visual art and its histories, from the ancient to the contemporary.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  4. Friday lates: designs of India at the V&A
    Last Few Places, Evening
    Course start date:  Fri 24 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Anita Chowdry
    Explore the treasures of the V&A Nehru Gallery and its painting and the decorative arts from India between the 16th and 19th centuries.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
  5. Friday lates: the art of zines
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 3 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Christopher Collier
    Underground passions and radical imagery have defined so-called fanzines for over 80 years. From the earliest examples to today, we explore their content, technique and the relation of DIY culture to wider artistic practices.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
  6. Lunchtime lecture: rethinking Mary Cassatt
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 9 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Join us for an exploration of the art of Mary Cassatt: feminist, independent, painter of women in the world.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £8.00 Concession £7.00
  7. Friday lates: Paula Rego – fairy tales and forbidden things
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 10 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Chantal Condron
    Discover the work of one of Britain’s best loved artists, whose paintings of vivid interior and private drama draw on her early years growing up in Portugal under the repressive Catholic dictatorship of General Salazar.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
  8. Friday lates: poster art: print, pop and propaganda
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 24 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Christopher Collier
    Get a snapshot of the eye-catching and colourful world of poster art, from Belle Époque decadence to Avant-Garde dynamism; from Art Nouveau to Atelier Populaire, and the everyday glamour of Pop.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  9. London's smaller galleries: Leighton House
    Course start date:  Mon 27 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Julie Barlow
    A Palace of Art built for the Olympian Giant of the Victorian art world but also a place to live and work. This short course provides a fascinating exploration of Leighton’s world.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £15.00 Concession £12.00
    Rating:
    96% of 100
  10. Friday lates: the art of the frame
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 31 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Julia Musgrave
    Every picture tells a story, but what about the frame around it? Find out how picture frames can tell us more about the artworks they surround.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  11. Lunchtime lecture: Botticelli's nature - vernal roses and frothing seas
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 24 Apr 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Explore the nature and evironment within and beyond Botticell's most iconic paintings, La Primavera and The Birth of Venus. Learn how closely the artist studied nature and what it can teach about the changing climate we live in today.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £8.00 Concession £7.00
  12. Friday lates: Lubaina Himid – longing and belonging
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 28 Apr 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Chantal Condron
    This Friday evening art history course spotlights the work of artist Lubaina Himid, one of Britain's most thought provoking artists.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  13. Friday lates: the body as image and material in 20th century art
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 28 Apr 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Explore the representation of body and body-related practices by prominent modern and contemporary artists of the twentieth century.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
  14. Friday lates: art and maps
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 12 May 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Christopher Collier
    Maps have a long and fascinating history, yet it was really the 20th Century that saw them come alive as an artistic medium, as artists turned to them to explore their place in a disoriented world. Discover the many ways artists have worked with maps, from Surrealism through to Digital Media.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
    Rating:
    80% of 100
  15. Friday lates: Phantom of Sex Appeal: women Surrealists in Britain
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 19 May 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    From the occult to the abstract, explore the art London-based, female surrealists and their unique contributions to one of the most influential art movements of the 20th century.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100

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