Study Tours are exclusive opportunities to spend from 2 to 5 intensive days with an expert in the field looking at works of art first hand, often with special access to collections or monuments.   

Tour fees are £250 for a 2-day trip, £400 for 3 days, £500 for 4 days and £625 for 5 days.    An additional £25 per tour is charged where we make extensive use of private coaches and/or are obliged to hire an approved local guide to accompany our lecturers.

The fee for these tours includes tuition, entry to all museum and sites, and transport between sites in the respective city or to destinations within the vicinity.   It does not include travel to and from the city/main destination of the tour or accommodation:

students are free to make their own arrangements. Study Tours are limited to a maximum of 12 students. All Study Tours include a good deal of walking and require a reasonable degree of physical fitness and mobility.  Please contact us if you have any doubts over your suitability to take part in any of the tours.

Terms and conditions

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Study tours 2013

great landscapes of the cotswolds


Dr Paula Henderson

Friday 7 – Sunday 9 June 2013


Some of the greatest historic landscapes survive in the Cotswold hills, including those of Blenheim Palace, whose park retains remnants of ‘Rosamund’s Bower’, the pleasure garden associated with medieval Woodstock Palace, traces of the early eighteenth-century militaristic gardens laid out for the first Duke of Marlborough and, most notably, the finest landscape scene ‘Capability’ Brown ever created. In addition to unravelling Blenheim’s history, we will visit Rousham Park, William Kent’s lyrical evocation of a classical landscape. There are also survivals of formal gardens, including the late seventeenth-century Anglo-Dutch water garden at Westbury Court and the delightful Arts and Crafts garden at Rodmarton Manor, still cared for by the original family. We will have private access to the late Rosemary Verey’s influential garden at Barnsley House and will investigate the remarkable archaeological evidence for the gardens of Chipping Campden Manor, a house built in 1615 and demolished in the Civil War, where the ghosts of terraces and water gardens appear in the dramatic earthworks. Travel will be by coach and we will meet in the ancient market town of Chipping Campden, which has hotels in all price ranges. The course will begin at noon on Friday and conclude mid-afternoon on Sunday.

Edvard munch's oslo


Dr Elena Kashina

Friday 28 – Sunday 30 June 2013


CANCELLATION:  We regret that this Study Tour had to be cancelled.

extreme close-up of oil portrait head three-quarters to right
Akseli Gallen-Kallela, Portrait of Munch, 1895, Ateneum taidemuseo, Helsinki
Oslo, where Munch began and concluded his career, and in whose locations and fjord he found artistic inspiration, is incomparably rich in works by this great modern artist. Thousands of paintings and graphic works document every stage of his artistic development. 2013, the Munch Year in Norway, presents an unmissable opportunity to benefit from this wealth and from many new initiatives dedicated to the artist. This Study Tour will take us to the principal collections of Munch’s work, specifically the Munch Museum, but also to the bridge on a picturesque hill overlooking Oslo city harbour, where his ‘endless scream’ still resonates, to the studio where he worked during the last three decades of his life, and to the enchanting nearby coastal town of Åsgårdstrand, whose inhabitants and views became Munch’s most affectionately rendered scenes. We will visit the small town of Hvitsen, where the artist’s house and studio will be opened to the public for the first time, and where a new gallery will be dedicated to his work.  The Study Tour will conclude with a visit to the Museum and extensive Sculpture Park celebrating the work of Gustav Vigeland, Munch’s contemporary, sometime rival and fellow contributor to international modernism.

dreaming spires and pre-raphaelite scholars: victorian oxford

Dr Carol Jacobi

Saturday 7 – Sunday 8 September 2013


From William Holman Hunt's The Light of the World in Keble College to the tapestries of William Morris and Edward Burne-Jones in Exeter College, Oxford is rich in Victorian history and art. The Ashmolean Museum and its Pre-Raphaelite paintings and drawings can be explored alongside Deane and Woodward's very different Natural History Museum. All were influenced by John Ruskin, who also pioneered international arts and crafts. The Oxford Union's Arthurian murals by Morris, Rossetti, Faulkner and Burne-Jones represented an important beginning for what would become Morris & Company. Walter Pater, who coined the phrase 'art for art's sake' was a favourite tutor of Oscar Wilde. Magdalen, Wilde's college, employed the architects G. F. Bodley and Thomas Garner to design the sophisticated St. Swithun's Quadrangle. Its complexity is comparable to T. G. Jackson's Examination Schools in a Jacobean style, and Bodley and Garner's Gothic Revival work for Christ Church College and its cathedral, which also features Morris & Co. stained glass. The city of 'dreaming spires' affords an extraordinary opportunity to experience the experimental beauty and innovation of these Victorians, and explore how their art and their architecture arose from  the concerns of their times.



byzantine Thessaloniki: the 'co-queen' of byzantium

Dr Cecily Hennessy

Wednesday 18 - Saturday 21 September 2013


Vibrant, culturally rich Thessaloniki is an ideal site for art historical exploration. It is steeped in a fascinating history and has several World Heritage sites. This trip focuses on material from the fourth to the fifteenth centuries, when Thessaloniki was the principal Byzantine centre of northern Greece, a city second only to Constantinople. It has unparalleled early mosaics as well as exquisite decorations from later Byzantium and excellent new museums. Early buildings include the striking fifth-century rotunda dedicated to Agios Georgios, with its idealised youthful saints depicted in the dome; the tiny church of Osios David with its unique representation of Christ; and the church of the city’s patron saint, the beloved Demetrios, with its remarkable pre-iconoclastic mosaics. Equally notable are churches decorated in later times, including Agia Sophia, the Panagia Chalkeon and Saint Nicolaos Orphanos. Among other sites, we also visit the acclaimed Museum of Byzantine Culture and the Roman palace.


violence and power in early renaissance florence


Dr Scott Nethersole

Friday 27 – Sunday 29 September 2013


Fifteenth-century Florence witnessed a delicate balance of power, an equilibrium so fragile that it frequently tipped over causing widespread violence, social unrest, exile and political instability. Yet despite such a tumultuous history, the visual arts produced by the likes of Masaccio, Filippo Lippi or Botticelli in this period are often seen in a very different light: a world of sweet Madonnas, ideal bodies and enlightened humanist patrons. Breaking with such traditions, this study trip will examine how visual media were exploited to serve the interests of different parties against the backdrop of these vicissitudes. On each day of this tour to Florence, we will follow a well-known route that not only cuts across the urban geography of the city, but also across our preconceptions of the Renaissance. They will include the route followed by the condemned on their way to the scaffold, that taken by a new Archbishop upon appointment, and that followed by the Magi processions on  6 January. En route we will visit some of Florence’s most famous sites and works of art and view them with new eyes.


santiago de compostela


Dr Rose Walker and Professor Rocío Sánchez Ameijeiras

Friday 11 – Sunday 13 October 2013


The culmination of so many pilgrimage journeys, Santiago de Compostela has crafted its fine cathedral to give a true sense of arrival.  A small city at the end of the known world in the Middle Ages, it knew how to receive travellers. This tour will look at the city through the description in the twelfth-century Pilgrim’s Guide from the Codex Calixtinus and visit the surviving landmarks. To the horror of pilgrims and art historians alike the manuscript was stolen in 2011, but fortunately recovered this year. Above all, we will consider the cathedral and its architectural conundrums from the earliest Romanesque chapels at the east end to its magnificent Gothic west entrance. We will discuss the conservation of the Pórtico de la Gloria from the scaffolding with Rocío Sánchez Ameijeiras, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela and member of the Comité Científico that is supervising it. There will be a visit to the Museum with its curator to help us understand the fine sculpture now on the south door of the cathedral, the Puerta de las Platerías. For refreshment we will go to the sixteenth-century Hostal de los Reyes Católicos, now the city’s Parador, and have lunch at a Galician restaurant.

Rome: Politics, Power and Religion from the birth of christianity until 1300

Dr Eileen Rubery

Wednesday 23 – Friday 25 October 2013


This three-day study tour will explore important sites in Rome from the period of St Peter’s arrival in the city to the removal of the papacy to France at the beginning of the fourteenth century.  We will discuss the 'Christianisation' of Rome and the Roman Empire following Constantine the Great's accession as Emperor and explore how art in Rome later came to reflect struggles with the Byzantine Empire over doctrinal questions, including the debate over the balance between Christ's humanity and divinity.  What effect did the Papacy's defense of iconoclasm have on Roman art?  What did art in Carolingian Rome look like? Visits aim to include the church of S Maria Antiqua, (a complete church from the sixth- ninth centuries, full of frescoes with many Eastern features, including the only Western example of tetramorph angels) which is not normally open to the public; the catacombs of Saint Priscilla (which include many of the earliest Christian images from the third and fourth centuries) and the Pope's Sancta Sanctorum, the lavishly decorated private chapel of the Popes in the Lateran complex; also with restricted access.



the bay of naples


James McDonaugh

Monday 11 – Friday 15 November 2013


Naples has long held a particular appeal for visitors. The phrase ‘See Naples and Die’ was allegedly coined by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe during the Golden Age of the Grand Tour, but already in Roman times, the city and its environs were a major visitor destination. Today, Naples is perhaps Italy’s most misunderstood city, a by-word for chaos yet filled with spectacular art and architecture that the majority of tourists miss. We will explore the hidden corners of the city and discover early Christian mosaics, medieval tombs, Renaissance sculpture and paintings by Caravaggio. The Bay of Naples is dotted with breathtaking classical sites, many of which are missed by visitors flocking to Pompeii alone. We will explore Cumae, the first Greek settlement on the Italian mainland, the ‘Burning Fields’ to the west of Naples, the great villa at Oplontis, and  the ‘Villa Pausylipon’, that extraordinary example of Roman engineering. We will also take a day trip to the Greek Doric temples at Paestum. Neapolitan food is among the finest in Italy and we will be sampling the best of this as we go along. This trip is designed to show you some of the great hidden sights of southern Italy.  



Dr Paula Henderson is an independent architectural and garden historian with an MA and PhD from The Courtauld. Her many publications include scholarly articles, and academic essays in Albion’s Classicism (Yale, 1995) and Patronage, Culture and Power: The Early Cecils (Yale, 2002). Her book The Tudor House and Garden: Architecture and Landscape in the Sixteenth and Early Seventeenth Centuries (Yale, 2005), won the Berger Prize for British Art History. She is currently completing a book on Gardens and Places of Pleasure in Tudor and early Stuart London.  Paula has lived (and gardened) in the Cotswolds for almost thirty years.

Dr Elena Kashina studied for her MPhil in Mediaeval Viking and Scandinavian Studies at the University of Oslo, following an award of a scholarship by the Research Council of Norway and gained her PhD in the History of Art at Leeds in 2007. Her scholarly interests include changes of traditional iconographies in sixteenth-century Russia, in their political and cultural context, and the history of artistic patronage, with an emphasis on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Her current research focuses on contributing to the edited collection on Representing the Past in the Nineteenth Century, to be published by Ashgate in 2015.

Dr Carol Jacobi is Curator of British Art 1850-1915 at Tate Britain. She has worked internationally as a writer, curator and lecturer on modern British Art. Carol has taught at Birkbeck (University of London), The Courtauld and Oxford Brookes and was Leverhulme Fellow in the History of Portraiture in 2008. Publications include, William Holman Hunt: Painter, Painting, Paint  and Out of the Cage: The Art of Isabel Rawsthorne.  Carol co-curated William Holman Hunt and the Pre-Raphaelite Vision for Manchester Art Gallery, Art Gallery of Ontario and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts 2008-9 and appeared in BBC4's The Pre-Raphaelites: Victorian Revolutionaries.

Dr Cecily Hennessy gained a PhD in Byzantine art from The Courtauld. She has taught at universities in the USA and the UK and was Head of Short Courses and Adult Learning at The Courtauld before joining Christie’s Education as a lecturer in 2006. Her book Images of Children in Byzantium was published in 2008. She has also published articles on Komnenian and Palaiologan Byzantine manuscripts, on paintings in Istanbul, on the topography of Constantinople in The Oxford Handbook of Byzantine Studies (2008) and on Byzantine children in the Blackwell Companion to Byzantium (2010).

Dr Scott Nethersole took his doctorate at The Courtauld on ‘The Representation of Violence in Fifteenth-century Florence’.  While writing his PhD he held the Michael Bromberg Fellowship in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum.  Subsequently he was the Harry M Weinrebe Curatorial Assistant at the National Gallery, London, before returning to The Courtauld in 2010 to take up the post of Lecturer in Italian Renaissance Art. He curated the exhibition Devotion by Design: Italian Altarpieces before 1500 at the National Gallery in 2011 and is currently finishing a book on Violent Art in Early Renaissance Florence.

Dr Rose Walker studied Classics at Oxford before working in arts and education. She obtained her PhD at The Courtauld on Spanish illuminated manuscripts and the management of change. Her book, Views of Transition: Liturgy and Illumination in Medieval Spain, was published in 1998. Her subsequent publications have covered a wide range from the wall paintings of San Isidoro de León to Cistercian cloisters in Spain around 1200. She is completing a project on routes of artistic exchange in Late Antique and Early Medieval Spain. She has taught at Birkbeck (University of London) and at Morley College, and led tours to Andalucia.

Rocío Sánchez  Ameijeirias is Professor of art history at the University of Santiago de Compostela. She is the author of a survey on Hispanic funerary sculpture (1993);  co-author of a monograph on the functions of the images in medieval cartularies (2008); co-editor of  a volume on the medieval tympanum (2004) and another on gender (2009), and she has written a copious number of articles and contributions. A book on Images and Literary Theory in the Medieval West (2013) is forthcoming. She is member of the Scientific Committee of the Programa Catedral de Santiago de Compostela, and of several scientific commitees of international journals.

Dr Eileen Rubery came to art history after a career in Medicine and the Civil Service. She completed her MA in Byzantine and Medieval Art at The Courtauld in 2002. Her current research is on aspects of patronage of the Popes in Byzantine Rome, and their relationship with the Eastern Empire. Eileen has published papers on early Christian art in Rome, the importance of the church councils, the early cult of the Virgin Mary and on Byzantine Empresses. She lectures for Cambridge University Institute of Continuing Education, the Victoria and Albert Museum and Birkbeck (University of London).

James McDonaugh has an MA in philosophy and theology from Oxford University, and an MA in architectural history from The Courtauld. His research and lecturing interests focus on Italy, Greece and Turkey. Since 2003 he has worked for numerous academic groups and touring companies and in 2008 he set up his own touring company – Art Tours Ltd – dedicated to taking groups on cultural tours all over Europe and beyond. He regularly takes tours to Italy for The Courtauld, most recently to Sicily in 2012 .