Historian icon Historian

Matthew Whyte

Born and raised in the south of Ireland, Matthew Whyte is an Art Historian specializing in the visual and cultural history of Italy from the thirteenth to the sixteenth century. He has lectured in University College Cork (UCC) since 2014, and his current research focuses on fifteenth-century Italian sculpture, exploring the impact of medieval theological principles on the visual response to issues of religious reform. Matthew completed an undergraduate degree in History of Art and Philosophy in 2014 and a Masters in Renaissance Art History in 2017. He earned his PhD in 2023, his doctoral research frequently taking him to cultural sites, research institutes, and archives across Italy. He teaches across all areas of Western Art History, with an emphasis on the historical, cultural, political, and ideological circumstances in which art and architecture was produced. Matthew has most recently presented his research at conferences organized by the Renaissance Society of America (RSA) and the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes in London. As part of his teaching activities, he frequently leads study trips in cultural sites across Europe.

Matthew approaches art history as a holistic discipline, incorporating cultural history, politics, philosophy, anthropology, and materiality. He strongly believes that learning history is an immersive activity best carried out through first-hand experience of the world’s cultures, a belief which has led him to participate in cultural expedition-based tourism since 2019. Outside art and history, Matthew's personal passions lie in music and cuisine – along with art, the best windows into a culture’s character. On board, you will find him as happy to discuss cooking tips and bluegrass mandolin as history, art, and culture!

My upcoming expeditions