Research course

Cross-cultural and artistic networks

Open University · Department of Art History

Entry requirements

Minimum 2:1 (or equivalent).

Months of entry


Course content

Cross-Cultural and Artistic Networks is a research group interested in issues of artistic encounter and exchange. It has the following two-part focus:

  • Art produced from the 13th through to the 16th centuries in a diverse group of territories, including Italy, the Low Countries, Spain and Byzantium.
  • Art’s connections to world economies and cross-cultural movement, during subsequent centuries (1550 and after).

The Cross-Cultural and Artistic Networks group aims to re-evaluate art history’s established methods and approaches in the light of emerging concerns across the wider humanities with processes of cultural encounter, movement and conflict. The geographical study of art has been championed recently as a foremost interest of art history as it undergoes its current ‘global turn’. We build on this awareness by interrogating how histories of art, place and location may be compared across diverse spaces and periods. Our research identifies both strategic practices of art scholarship and significant patterns in historical evidence in order to read ‘back and forth’ between diverse temporal contexts and regional locations.

We welcome applications in areas which correspond with current staff research interests. We look for detailed and well thought-out proposals, which set out specific research questions and outline the originality of your topic or approach. If you would like to discuss your ideas informally before submitting an application, please contact the department.

Potential research projects

We welcome applications to study topics that complement our current research.

Current/recent research projects
  • Culture, Humanism and Intellect: Cardinal Bessarion as Patron of the Arts
  • Travelling Irish Artists: Orientialism and British Imperialism
  • Elusive Translation: Film and Video in the work of Isaac Julien, Zineb Sedira and Alia Syed

Potential supervisors

  • Dr Emma Barker – French and British 18th-century art
  • Dr Kathleen Christian – Italian Renaissance art
  • Dr Leah Clark – Italian Renaissance art
  • Dr Angeliki Lymberopoulou – Byzantine art
  • Dr Leon Wainwright – Modern and contemporary art; transatlantic exchanges, diasporas and migration, connecting Britain, North America, and the Caribbean
  • Dr Kim Woods – Northern European art c.1350-c.1550, including the Netherlands, England and Spain
  • Mr Paul Wood – Modernism; modern and contemporary art; art and theory; cross-cultural influences in Western and ‘non-Western’ art

Fees and funding

Please see The Open University website for more information

Qualification and course duration


distance learning
variable months
full time
36 months
part time
72 months


part time
24 months
full time
15 months

Course contact details

Art Research School
+44 (0)1908 652479