External Fellowships

Graduate students in our program regularly win a variety of art history specific and non-art history specific fellowships awarded by the University of Chicago and outside organizations. For a listing of previous awards, see Awards Received. 

Departmental Nominations

Each year, the department holds internal competitions for the following art history specific external fellowships that require departmental nomination. Information about each competition is circulated via the graduate student listserv. 

Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts (CASVA) 

CASVA, founded in 1979 and located in the National Gallery’s East Building, is a research institute that fosters study of the production, use, and cultural meaning of art, artifacts, architecture, urbanism, photography, and film worldwide from prehistoric times to the present. CASVA offers ten pre-doctoral fellowships to support graduate research in the history, theory, and criticism of art, architecture, urbanism, and photographic media. Their programs also include other types of fellowships, meetings, research, and publications. These are privately funded through endowments and grants to the National Gallery of Art.

Kress Foundation History of Art Institutional Fellowships

Advanced training in European art history requires direct exposure to the object of study, prolonged access to key information resources such as libraries and photographic archives, the development of professional relationships with colleagues abroad, and sustained immersion in European cultures. These related needs are often best satisfied by extended engagement with a European art research center. The Kress History of Art: Institutional Fellowships are intended to provide promising young art historians with the opportunity to experience just this kind of immersion.

Six pre-doctoral Kress Institutional Fellowships in the History of European Art are awarded each year. Each fellowship provides for a two-year research appointment hosted by one of the following European art history research centers:

  • Florence Kunsthistorisches Institut
  • Leiden Kunsthistorisch Instituut der Rijksuniversiteit
  • London Courtauld Institute of Art & Warburg Institute of Art
  • Munich Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte
  • Paris Institut national d'histoire de l'art (INHA)
  • Rome Bibliotheca Hertziana

COSI Curatorial Research Fellowships

Each year the Department of Art History collaborates with the Art Institute of Chicago to appoint one to two UChicago PhD candidates to serve as yearlong curatorial research fellows under the mentorship of a curator. Drawing on departmental endowments from the Rhoades Foundation and the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation and another named in honor of former faculty member Joshua Taylor, fellows spend two days per week performing primary, scholarly research and writing about clearly defined objects in the museum’s collection; the remaining time is devoted to the research, writing, and completion of the Fellow’s dissertation. Fellows are able to draw on the expertise of staff at the museum beyond their curatorial mentor, including other curators, conservators, and conservation scientists.

Dedalus Dissertation Fellowship

The Dedalus Foundation Dissertation Fellowship is awarded annually to a PhD candidate at a university in the United States who is working on a dissertation related to painting, sculpture, and allied arts from 1940-1991, with a preference shown to Abstract Expressionism.

Schiff Foundation Fellowships

In 2005, the Architecture Department at the Art Institute of Chicago initiated a fellowship that awards $5,000 to a Chicago-area graduate student for writing a critical and/or analytical essay about the built environment. The goals of the Schiff Foundation Critical Architectural Writing Fellowship are to: (1) promote critical thinking and writing skills among advanced students of architecture and related fields; (2) encourage the development of courses related to architectural writing within Chicago schools and universities; (3) encourage interdisciplinary courses within Chicago universities; and (4) provide economic support and practical experience for students who may wish to pursue architectural journalism or criticism as a professional goal.

Graham Foundation: Carter Manny Award

The Carter Manny Award supports dissertation research and writing by promising scholars whose projects have architecture as their primary focus and have the potential to shape contemporary discourse in the field of architecture. Projects may be drawn from the various fields of inquiry supported by the Graham Foundation: architectural history, theory, and criticism; design; engineering; landscape architecture; urban planning; urban studies; visual arts; and other related fields. The award assists students enrolled in graduate programs in architecture, art history, the fine arts, humanities, and the social sciences working on architecture topics.

Other Awards

Information (and application deadlines) about other art history specific and non-art history specific fellowships can be found by clicking on the links below. Please also consult UChicagoGRAD, which has a robust fellowship database and oversees certain fellowship competitions including the Fulbright, Fulbright-Hays, and DAAD.

Art History Specific External Fellowships

Non-Art History Specific Fellowships

University Fellowships