Members of the Art Program believe that an understanding of various forms of the visual arts — both traditional and innovative — enhances our experience and enjoyment of our surroundings, especially its aesthetic aspects, and that art can provide greater meaning to the lives of those seeking to come to terms with it.

Courses in art history cover the entire chronological range of the Western tradition, examining artworks from stylistic, historical, and iconographical points of view. A major in art history presents a written thesis and public lecture at the end of the senior year.

Majors and minors may choose to continue their education in the visual arts in graduate school as preparation for careers as artists, educators, or staff members in museums, galleries, and other collection venues. But virtually every course in the Art Program also enrolls students from a broad variety of other disciplines. They come in search of parallels among the visual arts to other forms of human expression — historical, anthropological, literary, musical, and dramatic — both past and present, or merely with a wish to complement their other undergraduate experiences in the liberal arts by grasping more fully the bases of aesthetic meaning and judgment.
Whatever motivation might bring a student into the Visual Arts Center, however, an appreciation for the enduring values of art provides solid support for the life of any educated and inquisitive person.

Read about the ART HISTORY program:

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Amy Frederick

Photo of  Amy  Frederick
Assistant Professor of Art History Art History Work Office: Jones Visual Arts Center-209 Work Phone: 859.238.5959

Amy Frederick joined Centre’s faculty in 2015, and is assistant professor of art history. Her major area of interest is seventeenth-century Dutch art.

She received a B.A. in English and art history from Duke University, an M.A. in art history and museum studies and a Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University.



Peter Haffner

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF ART HISTORY--JVAC – 202 -- Work Phone: 859.238.5734   Work Email:


Peter Haffner joined the Centre College faculty in 2019 as assistant professor of art history.

Haffner’s research focuses on the production, sale, collection, and exhibition of art made in Haiti and its connections with tourism. By studying how artists and collectors operate in a specific system of production, collection, and display, his work provides insight into how people navigate the communicative capabilities of art. He uses an interdisciplinary approach that employs methodologies from curatorial studies, ethnography, theories of tourism, and art history.

Haffner received a B.A. in art history from Bard College, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Culture and Performance from UCLA.