(MENAFN- The Peninsula) The Peninsula
Doha: Though VCUarts Qatar's Fall 2022 applications process is closing soon, seats are still available in the Art History program, a four-year bachelor's program that is growing in relevance in Qatar, due to its ability to connect the history of art and cultural production to today's expanding cultural industry and landscape.
Recent graduate Sharifa Belal, who graduated from VCUarts Qatar in May of 2021, shares her own experience and sets the record straight as to what students gain from the major, and why it is a solid choice as the basis for a rewarding career.
“Art history is a study/subject that involves everything around us,” says the Class of 2021 graduate.“Art History connects with all the visuals, illustrations, buildings, paintings, basically all our surroundings. It challenges us to analyse and interpret objects and artwork created in a specific time or era.
“In my case, I was drawn to the subject, as I was always intrigued by how people have used art and design to capture moments around them, ordinary and extraordinary, for posterity,” she adds.
“To me, everything I see around me is part of that history – every person and place has evolved, and is defined, through visual or verbal representations of their pasts. And hence, choosing to study the subject has been one of the best decisions I have taken so far, because it's given me a better appreciation of human behaviour, specifically, and humanity, in general.”
According to the VCUarts Qatar alumna, the subject has adapted to include evolving methodologies, and in the process, has become truly cross-disciplinary, offering students across the globe a curriculum that equips them with a skill set well-suited to meet the needs of a modern digitized workforce and the burgeoning creative industries.
“The current digitized economy calls for high levels of emotional intelligence, attention to detail, a deep understanding of human behavior, empathy, critical thinking, analytical skills, and communication skills,” she explains.
“Art History – through its rigorous dissection of human creativity in the context of each period in history – teaches you all that. The diversity of skills is reflected in the range of jobs recent graduates hold – we're film makers, educators, curators, critics, art writers, design innovators, archivists, heritage conservationists, policy makers and government advisers.
“For me, personally, these skills shaped the way I think and act. For instance, it's taught me to respond to situations in the contexts in which they occur, and with an appreciation of human nature.”
Belal points to how, with its growing prominence as a hub for cultural tourism, fine art and design, there has never been a better time to study Art History in Qatar. Considerable investment in art and creative practice has given residents in Qatar even more access to events, workshops and exhibitions, than ever before, affording them an opportunity to reinterpret historically significant art and design, with a contemporary feel.
“In Qatar, people love to see history represented in art,” she says.“At the same time, they want to add a modern twist. As Art Historians, we see each generation of artists and designers explore this duality; and we encourage this.
Msheireb Downtown Doha is a notable example of a modern take on Qatar's artistic heritage. It is a mix of both the past and present, allowing us to reflect on its heritage and visualize the changes that have taken place.”
To find out more about the Art History program or to apply for Fall 2022, please contact: [email protected] Applications will be closing soon.
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