Getty/ACLS Postdoctoral Fellowships in the History of Art

For 25 years following the creation of the Getty Foundation in 1984, one of our flagship programs was the postdoctoral fellowship program. Our ambition was to broaden the definition of the visual arts, and better connect art history to other humanistic disciplines. During those years, we supported over 350 non-residential scholars at the beginning of their careers, many of whom are leaders in the field today. In 2009 following the economic downturn and our shift to strategic philanthropy, we concluded that the initial work of the postdoctoral fellowship program had been completed, and we ended it.

In 2017, the Foundation decided to take what we had learned from the earlier program and apply it to a new non-residential postdoctoral fellowship program, one that ideally would be more international and better connected to the Getty. We chose as our partner the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS), and made a major multi-year grant in 2017 with the first fellowships to begin in fall 2018. ACLS is administering the program, and fellows are selected with the assistance of an advisory committee. As with the earlier program, the fellowships encourage projects that make substantial and original contributions to the understanding of art and its history, an endeavor that now includes both technical and digital art history. At the end of each academic year, the ten Getty/ACLS fellows will gather at the Getty Center for a weeklong seminar.

Apply to ACLS for a Getty/ACLS Postdoctoral Fellowship

Meet the 2018 Getty/ACLS Postdoctoral Fellows


Postdoctoral Fellowships

From 1984—2009, the Getty Foundation provided over 350 Postdoctoral Fellowships to emerging scholars in the history of art and related humanities, allowing them to carry on their research wherever necessary in the world. For the first three years (1984—1987) the fellowships were administered by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. Thereafter, until the end of the program in 2009, the Getty Foundation administered the program directly. The fellowships prioritized cross-disciplinary research, new modes of interpretation, and projects that would have an impact on the larger field of art history. Getty postdocs were widely recognized for shifting the field of art history to a more interdisciplinary and international position. The fellowships also supported a generation of the most talented emerging scholars, many of whom are leaders in the field today.

Browse Postdoctoral Fellows in our Online Searchable Database

See 1985–1987 Postdoctoral Fellows administered by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation


Top: publications resulting from Getty Postdoctoral Fellowships