Birkbeck Department of History of Art

Our Relationship

The Society is affiliated to the Department of History of Art at Birkbeck, University of London.  Our association with Birkbeck reaches back to 1981 when the Society was launched by a small group of alumni as ULEMHAS (the University of London Extra-Mural History of Art Society).

Affiliation gives us unique access to art history experts and contacts in the art world.  Lecturers from Birkbeck are generous with their support for our activities and provide at least one of the six or so free evening lectures each year. All members of the Society are eligible to join the main Birkbeck Library in Malet Street at no cost (see the panel at the side of this page). A number of the Society’s events are held in Birkbeck’s landmark Keynes Library in Gordon Square.

The Society supports Birkbeck History of Art students through The London Art History Society Research Fund which is administered by the college and currently provides money to help with student costs associated with academic research, travel, and college conference organisation. The Society also funds an annual prize for the best MA dissertation each year.

We encourage all Society members to feel involved in Birkbeck life, to attend college events and to explore undertaking courses at Birkbeck.  We regularly post details of all Birkbeck courses, events and opportunities we think are likely to be of interest to members here, on these Birkbeck pages.  Please read more by clicking the panels below.

Birkbeck is a warm and inviting community, and you will be made very welcome at any of these events. The liaison representative between the Society and Birkbeck is committee member John Peacock, and you can obtain any further information you would like by emailing John on


Birkbeck Library

The Birkbeck Library in the Malet Street building holds an important collection of art historical material, as invaluable for general background reading as it is for detailed study. All London Art History Society members are entitled to acquire a Birkbeck Library card and use the library on a reference basis completely free of charge. Enhancing your membership of the Library to include borrowing rights is possible for a price of £70 per year.  More information.