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Course to unlock secrets of forgotten treasures

12/07/05

Course to unlock secrets of forgotten treasures

One of the works of Dora Gordine, on display in Dorich HouseA course aimed at teaching would-be experts the true value of twinkling gems lurking in the darkest recesses of British homes will go on offer this autumn at Kingston University. Being launched in September against a background of growing public interest in art and its increasing value, the postgraduate programme is designed to give professionals who need to value art the ability to put a price on paintings, furniture, ceramics and sculpture. Course organisers hope it will appeal to those working in the art market or graduates with arts degrees keen to carve a career in valuation.

The MA in Arts Market Appraisal, which is believed to be the only course of its kind in the United Kingdom, has been accredited by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). Professor Sarah Sayce, who has overseen development of the programme, said it was the result of a collaboration between Kingston University’s School of Surveying and its School of Art, Design and History. “We intend to combine our academic expertise of valuation with the knowledge of our fellow art historians. We’re very lucky that we can exploit this meeting of minds for the benefit of people working out there in the field,” she said.

As well as learning the principles of authenticating objects, students will also gain the crucial in-depth knowledge of the art market itself, finding out how it operates, the laws governing it and the way the industry does business. Professor Sayce believes the MA will particularly benefit individuals planning a career in art trading and people working in associated businesses. “Auction houses, museums, private collections, insurance companies and even the Inland Revenue all have staff involved in valuing works of art,” she said. “They will now be able to study for a professional qualification in their own specialist area with recognition from the body that sets standards for the valuation of arts and antiques.”

RICS Director of Education and Training Rob Tovey said that the two organisations had worked closely during the past two years to develop the course. “We really value having Kingston University as a partner,” he said. “We are extremely pleased the MA has now been validated and look forward to its role in ensuring more people pursue a career in this fascinating area of work.”

Potential students interested in applying for the MA in Arts Market Appraisal can contact Kingston University’s School of Surveying by emailing surveying@kingston.ac.uk.

 

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