ASU-LACMA Master's Fellowship in Art History

We are advancing a new generation of art museum leaders to create a more inclusive museum field.

The ASU-LACMA Master’s Fellowship in Art History offers a three-year degree program that pairs rigorous academic instruction through traditional masters-level coursework with on-the-job work experience. In this program, fellows explore key issues around expanding the canon of art history for the future of museums.

The fellowship

The fellowship allows staff already working at a participating museum to enroll in the master’s degree program in Art History at ASU. Museum employees take the classes via Zoom technology and participate in person and remotely in professional development activities.

Fellows have access to resources at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Perez Art Museum Miami, the ASU Art Museum and ASU’s Herberger Institute, the largest comprehensive design and arts school in the United States.

Eligibility requirements

Potential applicants must be employed at a participating museum for a minimum of one year. In addition, applicants must fulfill all admissions requirements for the MA in Art History degree. 

Program components

Coursework
ASU's MA in art history is a comprehensive degree program designed to train students to engage with visuality in multiple ways.  A diverse curriculum fosters critical understanding of aesthetics, production, patronage and consumption of art. Ten internationally recognized faculty members offer classes covering many cultures, time periods and geographies, using multiple approaches and methodologies. The program stresses intersections between disciplines and offers focused study in the areas of images and digital technologies, art in social and political contexts, and histories and theories of visual culture. Object-based learning using museum collections is an emphasis. 

Fellows enroll in two graduate-level courses each semester. Course offerings in the curriculum include Ancient Greek and Roman, Asian, Contemporary, Global/Thematic Seminars, Latin American, Medieval, Modern and Pre-Columbian art. Future coursework is planned in American Indian, Latinx, African American, Korean, African Diaspora and Oceanica art. 

Mentorship
An outside museum professional is assigned to mentor each fellow to provide individual counsel on graduate study, thesis and externship design, and ongoing career trajectory.

Thesis requirement
Under the guidance of a Thesis Committee, fellows write a thesis proposal during the second year and complete and defend their thesis in the third year. The thesis must demonstrate significant research abilities and methodological approaches.

Language requirement
Students must have a reading knowledge of one research language. The selected language needs to be appropriate for the area of research concentration and must be approved by the chosen faculty mentor. The requirement can be fulfilled by passing the Graduate Foreign Language Examination. Although it is highly recommended that students meet the foreign language requirement before beginning the program, many languages can be taken at ASU.   

Membership
Fellows receive a free professional membership during the fellowship to the American Alliance of Museums or the Association of Art Museum Curators. 

Travel and externship
Fellows are expected to participate virtually and/or travel to 1-2 convenings at either ASU or LACMA each semester and participate in annual convenings focused on current issues in museum practice and institutional leadership. Fellows participate in a customized weeklong externship at the end of their second year.

Who’s involved

Museum partners

The ASU-LACMA Master’s Fellowship was founded in 2018 as a partnership between ASU and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art with the aim to culturally diversify the leadership of art museums in the United States.

Since 2021, the partnership expanded to include the Perez Art Museum Miami and the Heard Musueum in Phoenix. Museum partners employ fellows and cover travel expenses.

Current fellows

Ellen Joo

Ellen Joo
Research Assistant, LACMA

Ellen Joo received her bachelor's degree in art history from Chapman University in 2019. She joined the Chinese and Korean Art Department as an intern in 2019 and was hired as a research assistant in 2021. Joo plans to research East Asian ink paintings with a focus on Korean ink paintings of the Japanese colonial period. Through a global modernist approach, she aims to analyze the ambivalence East Asian artists experienced towards the importation of Western goods and ideas in art.

Jackeline Lopez

Jackeline Lopez
Curatorial Administrator, LACMA

Jackeline Lopez received her Bachelor of Arts in anthropology with honors from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). She joined LACMA as an Andrew W. Mellon Undergraduate Curatorial Fellow in 2019 and was hired as a curatorial administrator in the Art of the Ancient Americas department in 2021. Lopez is a first-generation Latina from South Central Los Angeles who draws on her anthropological training to understand emic and etic power dynamics in museum spaces. Her goals as a scholar in the ASU-LACMA Fellowship are to investigate implicit cultural practices that expect and even prompt emerging BIPOC museum professionals to specialize in the very same curatorial areas that tokenize them and to help center Indigenous ontologies and narratives in Mesoamerican studies.

Jayne Manuel

Jayne Manuel
Registration Administrator, LACMA

Jayne Manuel earned her BA in art history, theory and criticism with honors from the University of California San Diego in 2015. Manuel joined LACMA’s registration department in September 2015 and currently serves as the registration administrator for the highly active outgoing loans program. Through an interdisciplinary art history-ethnic studies-transnational feminist approach, Manuel seeks to uplift Pilipino/a/x artists and stories of the diaspora into the institutional canon. She intends to focus on 1980s Philippine art collectives and contemporary Pilipino/a/x artists based in the United States, studying their depictions of intergenerational trauma and understanding of collective memory transmission.

Mariam Salia

Mariama Salia
Program Specialist, LACMA

Mariama Salia is from Seattle and received a BA in history and cinema studies from the University of Washington in 2014. After working in Seattle’s art scene, she moved to Los Angeles in 2018 to find more diverse creative spaces that allowed for expansion. She began working for the Balch Research Library in 2019 as an acquisitions assistant, purchasing and borrowing books for upcoming exhibitions, including special research projects. Her Ghanaian-Romanian background informs her interest in making art representative and accessible, and she plans to develop an interactive project aimed at engaging with and representing other queer artists of color. Salia intends to utilize the extensive resources within the library and the museum to trace and reassess historical boundaries facing marginalized artists who bridge the cultural divide.

Emily Valdes

Emily Valdes
Assistant Registrar, Pérez Art Museum Miami

Emily Valdes graduated from the University of Miami with a BA in art history in 2015. Since then, she has held a variety of positions at the Wolfsonian FIU, Margulies Collection at the Warehouse and Lowe Art Museum. Today, she works collaboratively with curators, artists and preparators as assistant registrar at Miami’s flagship art museum, Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM). At PAMM, Valdes plays an active role in the execution of a robust exhibition schedule, as well as day-to-day collections management efforts. As a first-generation Cuban American, Valdes is particularly interested in female, Latin artists who have failed to receive equal recognition to their male contemporaries, or female, Latin artists whose practices are deeply rooted in intersectional feminism. Though it is still nascent in conception, she is eager to produce a successful body of research significant to the advancement of Latina representation in museums and the acknowledgement of their unique contributions to the art historical canon.

Emily Le

Emily Le
Annual Giving Assistant, LACMA

Emily Le received her Bachelor of Arts in art history and English, with a minor in archaeology, in May 2021 from the University of Southern California (USC). Le first joined LACMA in 2019 as an Andrew W. Mellon Undergraduate Curatorial Fellow, first in the Japanese Art Department and then in the European Painting and Sculpture Department. She is now working in LACMA’s Development Department as the annual giving assistant. As an ASU-LACMA fellow, Le plans to further explore her research interests in Asian American, Asian Diasporic and Southeast Asian art histories, especially in relation to ideas of memory, counter-memory and post-memory.

Stephanie Rouinfar

Stephanie Rouinfar
Curatorial Administrator, LACMA

Stephanie Rouinfar received her BFA in art history in 2015 from the Savannah College of Art and Design. She joined LACMA in August 2015 as a social media intern in the communications department. In March 2016 she joined the Art of the Middle East department as the curatorial administrator. She has assisted with six exhibitions, including the recent exhibition “In the Fields of Empty Days: The Intersection of Past and Present in Iranian Art.” As a fellow in the ASU-LACMA program, Rouinfar plans to further study contemporary art of the Middle East, focusing on works concerning gender and feminism.

Roshii Montaño

Roshii Montaño
Assistant Registrar, Heard Museum

Roshii Montaño is a queer Diné scholar currently working in Phoenix, AZ. She graduated from Stanford University with a BA in Art History with departmental honors in 2020. Soon after graduating, she joined the Heard Museum as an Andrew W. Mellon Fellow and was hired as a curatorial assistant in 2022. She has assisted in many exhibitions at the Heard Museum and is independently co-curating an exhibition at Idyllwild Arts “Looking at Us: Examining Institutional Critique.” Roshii’s research interests include Indigenous queer performance, contemporary Indigenous art, decolonial theory, and Navajo textile politics concerning gender, labor, and economy.

Deliasofia Zacaria

Deliasofia Zacarias
Snap Research Fellow, LACMA

Deliasofia Zacarias is the Snap Research Fellow based in the Director’s Office for the LACMA × Snapchat: Monumental Perspectives, an initiative that explores monuments, history, and representation in public space using augmented reality. In addition to the various special projects in the Director’s Office, Zacarias directly supports the collaboration among the curatorial team, artists and technologists to realize the augmented reality lenses as part of Monumental Perspectives. Zacarias joined the museum in August 2019 as a LACMA Emerging Arts Professionals (LEAP) Fellow—part of the Diversifying Art Museum Leadership Initiative supported by the Walton Family Foundation and Ford Foundation. Zacarias also serves on the board of the Arts Administrators of Color Network.

At Arizona State University, Zacarias intends to research the intersection of contemporary art, feminist theory and landscape architecture and make use of LACMA’s and ASU’s rich collection. She holds a BA in studio art and business administration from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, where she was the recipient of the Mach Fellowship and received an Excellence in Art Award.

Past fellows

2018-2022

2018-2022

Aurora van Zoelen Cortés
Curatorial Administrator
Art of the Ancient Americas, LACMA
Ariana Enriquez
Assistant Registrar
ASU Art Museum
Matthew Villar Miranda
Curatorial fellow
ASU Art Museum
Dhyandra Lawson
Curatorial Assistant, Wallis Annenberg Photography Department
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Celia Yang
Head of Director’s Strategic Initiatives, Asia
Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Faculty

Ten internationally recognized faculty members in the history of art are joined each year by a dynamic mix of rotating visiting faculty and respected museum curators across the partner museums, who offer classes that span many cultures, time periods and geographies, using multiple approaches and methodologies. Meet the ASU art history faculty.

Program director

    Academic Advisor

    Staff

    David Red Feather
    Program Specialist
    dredfeat@asu.edu

    Museum curators

    Each year a specialized seminar is taught by museum curators.

    2018 Iranian Art: The Intersection of Past and Present (Dr. Linda Komaroff, LACMA)
    2019 Daoist Art (Dr. Stephen Little, LACMA)
    2020 Writing, Speaking,and Collaborating in a Museum Context (Dr. Diana Magaloni, LACMA)

    Program mentors and advisers

    Clarissa Esguerra, Associate Curator, LACMA
    Erika Franek, Assistant Director, Registration and Collections Information, LACMA
    Miki Garcia, Director, ASU Art Museum
    Michael Govan, Director, LACMA
    Naima Keith, Director of Education, LACMA
    Katie Kennedy, AVP, Corporate and Foundation Partnerships, LACMA
    Julio Morales, Curator, ASU Art Museum
    Forrest Solis, Director, School of Art, ASU
    Steven J. Tepper, Dean, Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts
    Olga Viso, Senior Adviser on Global Arts Partnership at ASU
    Hilary Walter, Director of Academic Programs, LACMA

    Public lectures

    Navigating Change in Museums lecture series

    The ASU-LACMA Navigating Change in Museums lecture series looks at diversity in museum practices. This series is free and open to the public.

    Wayfinding: Navigating White Supremacy Culture in Art Museums.
    Dr. Kelli Morgan

    Liquid, Love and Dreams: Decolonizing Museums.
    Wanda Nanibush

    Seeding Authority: Examples from a New Museum Community of Practice.
    Ben Garcia, Brandie Macdonald and Noelle M.K.Y. Kahanu

    Outlawed Social Life: A Story of Repatriation and Decolonization.
    Candice Hopkins

    Watch more lectures from the series

    Past lectures

    Diana Magaloni, Jan. 14, 2020, “The Florentine Codex & the Creation of the New World”
    Rita Gonzalez and Stephen Little, Aug. 26, 2019, “Art History in the Art Museum: A Curator’s Perspective”
    Amada Cruz, Miki Gracia and Tiffany Ana López, Nov. 27, 2018, “Roundtable Discussion on Diversity and Inclusion”
    Bryan Brayboy, Aug. 13, 2018, “Diversity and Inclusion in Higher Education”
    Chon Noriega, Aug. 13, 2018, “The Museum of the Future: Archives, Collections, Exhibitions, and Catalogs”
    Sharon Takeda, Aug. 13, 2018, “From Farm Girl to Museum Curator: The Story of One Asian-American”

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