Launch your career in the art world


Sotheby’s Institute MA in Art Business at the Drucker School of Management
 prepares students for careers in the international art world.

Based in Los Angeles County, the artistic capital of the Western United States and the unrivaled center of the international entertainment industry, as well as an increasingly important hub for the economies of the Pacific Rim, the MA in Art Business offers access to a dynamic and innovative arts community and to many of the world's most creative arts professionals. As a partnership with the Drucker School of Management, the MA in Art Business provides a solid foundation in business education and instruction from a distinguished faculty dedicated to the practice of management as a "liberal art."

Students in the Art Business program enjoy privileged access to Los Angeles’s great museums as well as the city's galleries and private collections. The vibrancy of Los Angeles and its innovative art scene provide a backdrop of excitement and creativity for the study of art and its markets as well as significant professional opportunities with Sotheby’s Institute's west-coast alumni.

For more on Sotheby’s Institute of Art and its campuses in New York City and London, click here.

 

 

The Art Business Curriculum: Dual Core, Three Concentrations.

The MA in Art Business program is a full-time, three-semester program, which is structured around a dual core curriculum and, currently, three areas of concentration:

Core 1 consists of The Drucker School’s core courses in management, which include finance and accounting, marketing, organizational behavior, and economics of strategy – the fundamentals of any elite business education.

Core 2 consists of Sotheby’s Institute of Art’s signature core courses in art business, which include the structures of the art market, comparative art markets, art law, and modules of professional practice, such as the auction business, valuation, development, and entrepreneurship.

This dual core then leads to one of three concentrations:

Concentration 1: General Art Business
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This is the standard, and broadest-reaching, art business curriculum. It includes the Drucker School’s core courses in management and Sotheby’s Institute’s core courses in art business, as well as sixteen units of elective courses that may be drawn from the full array of courses offered at CGU and, in certain cases, upper level seminars offered by the Claremont Colleges. The General Business curriculum prepares students for entry into any number of art world careers, from auction runner to art fair manager to gallery director and more.

Concentration 2: East Asian Art
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Students with a dedicated interest in East Asian art and its markets may elect this concentration, which begins with the Drucker School’s core courses in management and Sotheby’s Institute’s core course in art business, but then follows a set curriculum that prepares students for working in and across the art markets of China, Japan, Korea as well as other East Asian countries. Through a combination of courses that cover both cultural policy and art history as well as connoisseurship, in conjunction with courses on international art law and “Doing Business in Asia” – an intensive course that culminates with a week of travel in the region – students are immersed within the world of East Asian art and business. As cultural literacy and communication are key factors to success in these markets, over the summer between their second and third semesters in the program, students are given the opportunity for further travel in the region, which can be paired with full-immersion language study or internships with East Asia-based art businesses and organizations, or both.

Concentration 3: Contemporary Art
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There can be little doubt that International Contemporary Art is a major and very visible feature of the global art market. Students with an exclusive interest in contemporary art may choose this concentration, which includes the Drucker School’s core courses in management and Sotheby’s Institute’s core courses in art business, as well as a year-long survey of contemporary art’s recent history and specialized courses covering contemporary art theory and communications – from press releases and reviews to artist’s statements and catalogue essays. In the summer between the second and third semester, students in this concentration take part in an exhibition-making practicum, for which they stage an exhibition of contemporary art, producing and managing everything from the show’s curatorial direction to its budget, logistics, marketing, and programming. The contemporary art concentration prepares students for careers at the cutting edge of the international contemporary art world.

 

Art Business On Site

As an ever-evolving part of the cultural landscape, the art world has to be experienced to be understood, let alone mastered. Field study, which is called “Art Business on Site” on the LA campus, is a key component of the Art Business curriculum and offers students opportunities to gain familiarity with other global centers and access to professionals and practitioners outside of Los Angeles. Sites visited have included Hong Kong, Beijing, Mexico City, and Las Vegas.

 

The Master’s Project

Every student in the LA program must pursue a Master’s Project (MP) in their third semester of study. This is a project of the student's own design, and is often one directly related to the career path the student intends to follow upon graduation.

Beginning with workshops in their second semester, students generate ideas for businesses, products, research, exhibitions, or similar pursuits, which are then refined into proposals for the MP itself. From the project description to its scope, schedule for completion, and final format, the student determines the shape and nature of the MP. In the third semester, students take part in the Master’s Project Seminar, where they regularly share and critique one anothers’ projects as they move towards completion. At the end of the third semester, every student submits their final deliverable (e.g. business plan, analytics report, product design, exhibition proposal, etc.) and gives an oral presentation of their MP to a panel of invited faculty and art-world professionals.

The MP is the final piece of academic work for which every Art Business student is responsible, but it is also helpful to think of it as the first piece of professional work in each student’s future art-world career.

 

Curriculums At a Glance

The following curriculums offer a basic picture of the course flow for each of the three concentrations in the Art Business program. Because CGU offers a flexible structure of intensives, half-semester “modules,” and full-semester course, not every title that follows will be taken as a standard fourteen-week class. Some titles, such as “Professional Practice” indicate a category of different courses, for example “The Auction Business” and “Appraising Contemporary Art,” which are not listed below but can be found in the full Art Business course list.

 

General Art Business

Semester 1
 Structure of the International Art Market
 Comparative Art Markets
 Art Law
 Finance and Accounting
 Organizational Behavior
 Economics of Strategy
 Art Business On-site
Semester 2
 Art Law
 Professional Practice
 Marketing
 Master's Project Methods
 Elective
 Art Business On-site
Semester 3
 Master's Project Seminar
 Elective
 Elective
 Elective
Electives can be chosen from the upper-level art history courses of the The Claremont Colleges or from the Drucker School’s MBA offerings, Claremont’s MFA curriculum in studio art or its graduate programs in Arts Management or Museum Studies.

 

East Asian Art

Semester 1
 Structure of the International Art Market
 Comparative Art Markets
 Finance and Accounting
 Art Law
 Organizational Behavior
 Art Business On-site

Semester 2
 Marketing
 International Art Law
 Doing Business in Asia/China
 Art & the Markets of Asia/China
 Economics of Strategy
 Master's Project Methods
Summer
 Travel/Internship
 Language Immersion
Semester 3
 Asian Art History & Connoisseurship
 Cultural And Arts Policy in Asia
 Art Business on Site
 Master's Project Seminar

 

Contemporary Art

Semester 1
 Structure of the International Art Market
 Comparative Art Markets
 Finance and Accounting
 Art Law
 Organizational Behavior
 Art Business On-site

Semester 2
 Marketing
 Art Law
 Contemporary Art Communications
 Survey of Contemporary Art
 Economics of Strategy
 Master's Project Methods
 Art Business On-site
Summer
 Exhibition Making & Management
Semester 3
 Ideas of Contemporary Art
 Survey of Contemporary Art
 Art Business on Site
 Master's Project Seminar

 

Why Drucker?

When in the 1970s Peter Drucker left New York University to join the faculty of Claremont Graduate University, part of his motivation was an opportunity to teach art history, and indeed, from 1979 to 1985 he was named Professorial Lecturer in Oriental Art – as it was then named – at Pomona College. At the management school that bears his name, a program in the business of art and the management of art’s associated creative industries is a natural fit. Sotheby’s Institute of Art, a leader in art-business education, partnered with the only graduate school and management program in the US committed to Peter Drucker’s interdisciplinary legacy.

 

Learn More & Apply Today

For more than four decades, Sotheby's Institute of Art has been preparing the art world leaders of tomorrow. Its graduates hold positions as owners and directors of major galleries, auction house experts, museum directors, curators, art advisors and legal experts along with a wide array of entrepreneurial endeavors in the creative industries worldwide.

We invite you to learn more about this new and innovative program and would be pleased to provide you with further information.

To view the schedule of upcoming open days, please click here.

To apply for Fall 2015 admission, click here.

 

Choosing between the Art Business and Arts Management program depends on the student's career goals or aspirations.

Art Business focuses on the visual arts with an emphasis on the for-profit side of the industry and the institutions that manage, conserve, exhibit, promote and sell works of art. Students who pursue a degree in Art Business typically work in art galleries, auction houses, museums, exhibition spaces and other art enterprises. Art Business students tend to be entrepreneurial and many start their own innovative art businesses.

Arts Management focuses on all aspects of the arts (theater and dance, arts education, arts organizations, etc.) culture, and policy. The program also has a focus on management and the non-profit side of the arts. Students who pursue a degree in Arts Management manage and build art organizations; work in art education and policy; cultural organizations; etc.

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