You Were an Art History Major? What Do You Do with That?

I couldn’t possibly tell you how many times I have heard those words while staring into the skeptical, patronizing faces of everyone from friends and family to peers and strangers. I grew up as an artist, exploring a vast array of media and creative options through a blessed experience in Arts Magnet programs. From there I discovered a passion for studying Art History, which I found to be the ideal combination of my love for creativity and academia. This love for the arts has developed into many incredible opportunities from working in Pompeii during the summers to graduate school offers in the world’s most prominent cities and, most recently, to working with the Marketing Director at the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art.

I have made incredible progress in my pursuit of a career in the arts, but it has not been an easy journey. I was constantly barraged with critical commentary about how impractical it would be to pursue the arts to the point of my deciding to follow a Pre-Medical course in my first years of college. Art obviously won in the end though. Despite enjoying medicine, I found that I was much happier dissecting a painting than a pig. A single work of art holds a rich history that, if explored, can open dialogue for the past, present, and future in not only the visual arts but also economics, politics, social life, religion, international relations, and much more.

The art world has so much to offer if you are willing to look. From academia to gallery management to marketing to appraisal, there is no shortage of career opportunities for a career in the arts. I am excited to announce that I have been invited to spend the next two years with Christie’s Education Program in London to study Contemporary Art and the Art Market that will lead to a Master’s in Art Administration and Business. Until then, though, I am serving as a Marketing Intern at the Brooks and loving every minute of it.

The Brooks community is friendly and inviting and a place of wonder for a young art aficionado such as myself. Getting to work behind the scenes with the people who keep the museum alive has been an invaluable experience. Prior to working here, I spent countless hours perusing the galleries, attending film showings, and eating at the Brushmark. Through college, the Brooks was my encyclopedic art oasis of Memphis, and now I get to aid in spreading news of all that it has to offer to the Memphis community in hopes that everyone will get to enjoy the museum as much as I have.

The Brooks Museum and the arts in general have so much to offer anyone and everyone if they are willing to open their mind to new possibilities. I love the arts and working here has been an experience that I will value through the rest of my career and life. Keep in mind:The earth without art is just eh.

Best wishes and many thanks to the Brooks,
Amy Bower

This blog is written by Amy Bower, Marketing Intern for the Brooks.