Haoying “Ivy” Huang ’22 at global art fair FRIEZE New York.
Haoying “Ivy” Huang ’22 understands that, although fun, a career in the art industry requires immense dedication to one’s craft. As she heads to Columbia University to pursue a master’s degree in modern and contemporary art: critical and curatorial studies, she reflects on her experiences at Hamilton, how they prepared her for her post-grad work, and how she plans to expand upon her studies at Columbia.

Huang’s passion for art goes back to her childhood when she took drawing lessons. She acknowledges that she was “not born with a creative spirit,” but rather enjoyed learning about artwork in a specific genre and then working off of that to create her own pieces.

When she got to Hamilton, Huang had stopped drawing and instead began exploring art in depth. She researched visual productions from the early modern to the contemporary period, predominately in Asia and Europe. Her studies spanned both the globe and time periods that included Native American effigy jars, British daguerreotypes, medieval manuscripts, Neo-Assyrian reliefs, and contemporary American ceramics.

Huang also took advantage of Hamilton’s open curriculum and double majored in art history and philosophy, which allowed her to appreciate the intellectual aspect of curation. She attributes much of her personal and professional growth to her time working at the Wellin Museum and to Professor John McEnroe in the Art History Department.

“Just like philosophers present their ideas through assembling arguments, art curators generate dialectics through researching and producing knowledge about art,” she said. “My coursework at Hamilton will prepare me well for Columbia’s program.”

Haoying “Ivy” Huang ’22

Majors: Art History and Philosophy
Hometown: New York, N.Y.
High School: Guangdong Experimental High School, Guangzhou, China
Activities: Wellin Museum docent, Art History and Japanese teaching assistant

While at Columbia, Huang will develop an interdisciplinary curriculum based on her goals and interests in art history. She looks forward to studying more modern and contemporary art. “I learned a little bit of everything [through] the Art History Department at Hamilton, but now I want to be more focused in one area,” she said.

After Hamilton, Huang intends to further pursue the art industry and become a curator or a specialist at an auction house.  

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