The Courtauld Institute of Art is the world’s leading centre for the study of the history and conservation of art and architecture. Its Gallery houses one of Britain’s best-loved collections. Through its unique integration of activities, facilities and resources, The Courtauld provides an exceptional environment for research, learning and professional development.
The Courtauld is an independent college of the University of London. In January 2019, we moved to our home until 2023/24, at Vernon Square, King’s Cross. This move marks the start of our exciting transformational Courtauld Connects project. A key part of the project will be a major refurbishment of The Courtauld’s magnificent buildings in the North Block of Somerset House. We are working with Stirling Prize-winning architects Witherford Watson Mann to carefully restore our important Grade One listed building, as well as transform the experience of The Courtauld for our students and the public through improved access and re-awakening of some of the beautiful spaces throughout the building.
The Courtauld offers a range of degree programmes – a BA, Graduate Diploma and MA in the History of Art; a Postgraduate Diploma in the Conservation of Easel Paintings; an MA in Wall Painting Conservation; an MA in Buddhist Art: History and Conservation; an MA in Curating the Art Museum; and MPhil and PhD research degrees in all these subjects.
Courtauld faculty teach and supervise research from western antiquity to the global present. Through its alumni, The Courtauld generates an evolving community of specialists who shape the international art world.
Facilities for students are exceptional, including outstanding libraries, the Research Forum which offers access to visiting speakers from around the world and The Courtauld Gallery‘s outstanding collection of paintings, drawings and prints, sculpture and decorative arts.
The Courtauld Gallery, is famous for its iconic Impressionist and Post-Impressionist masterpieces, as well as numerous other important paintings and works of art from the Renaissance through to the 20th century. Its research-based temporary exhibitions are small in scale, and designed to offer both pleasure to the eye and stimulation for the mind. The Courtauld Gallery and Courtauld Shop are currently closed until Spring 2021 while we undertake our Courtauld Connects transformation project.
Public lectures, short courses and summer schools also allow members of the public to share in the wealth of expertise at The Courtauld.
The foundation of The Courtauld Institute of Art was presided over by a triumvirate of collectors, brought together by a common wish to improve the understanding of the visual arts in this country. By 1930 the idea of such an academic centre devoted to the serious study of the history of art had been in the air for some time. There were precedents in Europe and America, the critic Roger Fry and the fine art dealer Duveen had expressed interest; but there was also opposition, rooted in a deep-seated insular conviction that the arts were the playthings of the rich and not a suitable subject for a university education. Without the initiative and pertinacity of the founding fathers, Viscount Lee of Fareham, Samuel Courtauld, and Sir Robert Witt, it is doubtful whether the project would ever have got off the ground.
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