Julia Milano '14
My internship at the Art Institute provided me with multiple opportunities to apply much of what I have learned as an art history major.
Because I was working in Development, the department needed someone who had a solid understanding of art history. Since Development focuses primarily on raising funds for the museum, my art history and research skills were valuable in gathering information donors of the museum would find interesting.
While studying art history at Denison, I have read about various artists such as Giorgio Vasari, Claude Monet, and Pablo Picasso and spent many hours researching artworks ranging from the Middle Ages up to the present day. Interning at the Art Institute allowed me to utilize all of this knowledge in ways I never have before. Paintings I had only seen in textbooks became something I was able to view everyday. Being able to see masterpieces such as Monet’s Haystacks and Seurat’s Sunday on La Grande Jatte was one of the most memorable opportunities I took away from this internship.
Over time, I became familiar with many of the galleries and was able to set up mini private tours and answer questions for museum visitors. Meeting the curator of the I.F.M. exhibition, Gloria Groom, also heightened my interest in pursuing a job in curatorship, a career that has fascinated me for many years.
Interning at the Art Institute exposed me to many career paths suited for a graduate with a degree in art history. The careers I find most interesting in museum operations include conservators, curators, event planners, and collection managers. I learned about all of these careers and many others during my time at the Art Institute. Before my internship, I did not know of many employment opportunities for art history degrees, but after a Summer at the Art Institute, my knowledge of careers available in the business of art has greatly expanded.
Aside from working in a major museum such as the Art Institute, what I would really like to do with my degree someday is be an art consultant for private collectors. To be an art consultant, one must have not only an extensive knowledge of art history, but a firm understanding of the way in which art is valuated and collected. An art consultant must also know how to navigate the art market, which is primarily comprised of galleries, museums, and other private collectors.
At the Art Institute, I was exposed to many aspects that would help me acquire a job as an art consultant. I was able to assess art on my own and with others, meet several art collectors, and learn about art marketing within a museum. This internship truly helped me discover what direction I want to go in after I graduate in May 2014!