History depends on those who preserve the cultural heritage of ancient and modern civilizations around the world. DU's bachelor of fine arts degree in pre-art conservation combines studio art, art history, language, chemistry and conservation techniques. We'll help you explore artistic styles and concepts while you learn how to protect cultural artifacts for future generations.
Many students work with Italian conservators in Florence, Italy during their junior year. Additional hands-on experience includes internship opportunities at major institutions, such as the Clyfford Still Museum, Denver Art Museum, Denver Museum of Nature and Science, Western Center for the Conservation of Fine Arts and Mountain States Art Conservation. This rigorous program can lead to careers in conservation and museum curation.
Why Study Pre-Art Conservation at DU?
Art students enjoy small class sizes in state-of-the-art facilities and open access to arts supplies, resources and technologies.
We help students secure internships, enabling them to gain the experience needed to apply to graduate conservation programs.
Our partnerships with the Denver Art Museum, Clyfford Still Museum and Western Center for the Conservation of Fine Arts give students opportunities for hands-on experiences in art conservation.
We introduce students to internationally renowned visiting artists, curators and scholars to expand their professional network.
- Students normally complete 200 credits, including 116 credits of art, art history, and conservation; 24 credits of chemistry (including an organic chemistry sequence); and 24 credits of language study.
- Students also complete a conservation internship and a senior project working with a conservator.
- Distinction in the major includes earning a minimum 3.3 major GPA and going above and beyond the normal senior project and presentation.
See the DU Undergraduate Bulletin for full course requirements.
Applying to Pre-Art Conservation
In addition to completing the DU undergraduate application, Pre-Art Conservation majors must complete a portfolio and apply directly to the major. Students may turn in their portfolio and apply at the same time that they apply to the university, or they may begin as a student in the Art or Art History BA program and apply to Pre-Art Conservation within their first two years at DU. Those who begin in Art or Art History should work with the program's advisor to make sure they are taking the right classes to stay on track for the Pre-Art Conservation degree.
To indicate your interest in Pre-Art Conservation and get more information about the portfolio requirements, please contact the program advisor, Scott Montgomery.
Intro to Conservation
About this Course
Intro to Conservation covers history, theories and practices of conservation in classroom format at DU, with field trips to conservation labs. Taught by James Squires, Chief Conservator at Clyfford Still Museum, and assisted by other conservators.
About this Course
Conservation Internship is an independent study taken fall quarter of senior year. Students work with conservators to familiarize themselves with practical applications of art conservation. Examples of student work include reports, photo documentation, research, watching or helping with a variety of analytical tests, and performing treatments under close supervision. Students also begin building a portfolio for grad school application.
About this Course
This course is taken spring quarter of senior year under supervision of a conservator. Students choose a project in conservation (normally during winter quarter) and focus on it most of spring quarter. During the project, students conduct research, learn techniques, carry out treatment and make a professional presentation for the senior exhibition in Myhren Gallery. They also continue working on their portfolio and investigating grad schools, although additional work in a lab will normally be needed after graduation to become competitive.