1992 – an art history programme was opened at the Tallinn Art University (established in 1914 as the Estonian Art Society’s Tallinn School of Arts and Crafts). The first entrance examinations were held that summer. The art history department was renamed the Institute of Art History.
1995 – the first doctoral dissertations were defended (Juhan Maiste and Rein Zobel).
1996 – the first graduates in the BA programme.
1998 – the first state-funded research grant was received for beginning the compilation of the series of volumes “Eesti kunsti ajalugu” (The History of Estonian Art).
29 March 2016 – the Institute of Art History was renamed the Institute of Art History and Visual Culture.
In 2019, KVI became a member of the International Association of Research Institutes in the History of Art (RIHA).
See also about the prehistory and formation:
Jaak Kangilaski, The Teaching of Social Sciences and Art History at the State Art Institute of the Estonian SSR 1944–1989. – Kunsttööstuskoolist Kunstiakadeemiaks. 100 aastat kunstiharidust Tallinnas / From the School of Arts and Crafts to the Academy of Arts. 100 Years of Art Education in Tallinn. Toim Mart Kalm. Tallinn: Eesti Kunstiakadeemia Kirjastus, 2014, lk 396–411 [pdf]