Bard Graduate Center, a member of the Association of Research Institutes in Art History (ARIAH), offers long- and short-term fellowships for researchers working on the cultural history of the material world, whether through art history, architecture and design history, economic and cultural history, history of technology, philosophy, anthropology, or archaeology. Below are the fellows who will be in residence during the 2017-18 academic year.

Fabio Barry

Visiting Fellow, September–December 2017

Fabio Barry studied architecture at the University of Cambridge (MA, Dip Arch), and briefly practiced before receiving his PhD in art history from Columbia University. He formerly taught at the University of St. Andrews, and is now Assistant Professor in the Department of Art and Art History at Stanford University. His research has often concentrated on art in Rome, particularly Baroque architecture, but recent publications have dwelt on medieval and antique art, especially sculpture. An ongoing concern is the imagery of marble in the visual arts and literature from antiquity until the Age of Enlightenment, in which he attempts to identify the evocative qualities of materials before the era of mass production and standardization distanced them from the realm of nature and myth. His article “Walking on Water: Cosmic Floors in Antiquity and the Middle Ages” in The Art Bulletin won the 2008 Arthur Kingsley Porter Prize of the College Art Association. Awards include David E. Finley Fellow at CASVA, and Fellow of the Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, Columbia University.

Alicia Boswell

Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow
Cultures of Conservation, Fall 2016–Summer 2018

I am an anthropological archaeologist whose research examines the dynamics of complex societies and interactions between PreColumbian groups in different ecological zones of the Andes. My field research prioritizes examining the lived experience of household and producer communities and how those experiences are indirectly and directly connected to interregional economic and sociopolitical relationships. In my current postdoctoral project, I examine PreColumbian groups interactions through the study of high prestige objects, elite metal regalia. This project builds on my past research on prestige goods which examined imperial-local relationships in the chaupiyunga, the coca-plant producing zone of the western slope of the Andes between local groups and two Andean Empires, the Chimú (AD 900-1470) and the Inca (AD 1470-1532). Collaboration with modern communities is equally important in my research through community-based heritage preservation projects in Peru. I have almost a decade of experience working with local communities and students through Mobilizing Opportunities for Community Heritage Empowerment (MOCHE, Inc.). In the Summer of 2017 I directed the MOCHE Conservation Field School with my fellow Cultures of Conservation Fellow, Jessica Walthew. One of my long-term research goal is to integrate heritage conservation more directly into social science research.

As an Andrew W. Mellon “Cultures of Conservation” Postdoctoral Fellow at Bard Graduate Center, I teach courses on the techné and cultures of the PreColumbian Americas. I am also collaborating with curatorial and conservation departments at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on the “Crucibles of Innovation Project,” an endeavor to expand the lens of South American metallurgical studies and link The MET’s collection to a larger dialogue on metalworking technology and relationships throughout the Americas.

Visa Immonen

Research Fellow, April–May 2018

Visa Immonen is Assistant Professor of Cultural Heritage Studies at the University of Helsinki. Besides Helsinki, he worked as a Visiting Scholar at Stanford University (2010–2011) and as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Getty Research Institute (2015–2016). His research focuses on medieval material culture, especially luxury consumption. His doctoral dissertation, Golden Moments—Artefacts of Precious Metals as Products of Luxury Consumption in Finland c. 1200–1600, was published in 2009. He has continued to combine archaeological and art historical methods in articles including “Connecting Things through the Visual Arts: Medieval Crescent Moon Pendants as Horse Ornaments” (Norwegian Archaeological Review, 2013), and “Fondling on the Kitchen Table—Artefacts, Sexualities and Performative Metaphors in the 15th to 17th Centuries” (Journal of Social Archaeology, 2014). At Bard Graduate Center, he will be completing a book manuscript on scientific analyses conducted on medieval relics and reliquaries across Europe.

In addition to medieval studies, Immonen is engaged in cultural heritage studies, and has recently published a monograph on the development of Finnish cultural heritage legislation and administration during the twentieth century. He has also discussed issues related to cultural heritage in such articles as “‘Quidditching’, and the Emergence of New Heritage Identities: Amateur Metal Detecting in Finland” (with Joonas Kinnunen, Public Archaeology, 2017), and “Photographic Bodies and Biographical Narratives: The Finnish State Archaeologist Juhani Rinne in Pictures” (Photography & Culture, 2012).
Carol Yinghua Lu

ARIAH East Asia Fellow, July–September 2017

Carol Yinghua Lu is an art critic and curator, as well as a PhD candidate in art history at the University of Melbourne. She is a contributing editor at Frieze, is on the advisory board of The Exhibitionist, and was on the jury for the Golden Lion Award at the 2011 Venice Biennale. She also served as co-artistic director of the 2012 Gwangju Biennale and co-curator of the 7th Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale in 2012. From 2012 to 2015, she was the artistic director and chief curator of OCAT Shenzhen and in 2013 she was the first visiting fellow in the Asia-Pacific Fellowship program at the Tate Research Centre.

In collaboration with the artist Liu Ding, she is in the process of researching the legacy of Socialist Realism in the practice and historical narrative of contemporary art in China. They have co-edited and co-authored Reef: A Prequel (Maastricht: Bonnefantenmuseum, 2016); Little Movements I: Self-Practices in Contemporary Art (Guangxi Normal University Press, 2011); Little Movements II: Self-Practices in Contemporary Art (Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther Konig, 2013); Accidental Message: Art is Not a System, Not a World (Lingnan Art Publishing House, 2012); and Individual Experience: Conversations and Narratives of Contemporary Art Practice in China from 1989 to 2000 (Lingnan Art Publishing House, 2013).

At Bard Graduate Center, she will continue her research on examining the historical relevance of the formation of Socialist Realism to the discourse and judgment of contemporary art in China, focusing on the intellectual tradition in China since the 1940s. She will interview a number of historians of Chinese literature and Chinese philosophy based in America and will continue her writing on this project.
Jeanette Lynes

Visiting Fellow, November–December 2017

Jeanette Lynes is a Professor of English and Director of the MFA in Writing at the University of Saskatchewan, Canada. She received her PhD in English from York University, Toronto, and her MFA in Writing from the University of Southern Maine’s low-residency Stonecoast Program. She is the author of seven books of poetry, most recently, Bedlam Cowslip: The John Clare Poems (Buckrider Books Imprint, 2015), which received the 2016 Saskatchewan Arts Board Poetry Award. Her novel, The Factory Voice (Coteau Books, 2009), which tells the story of women aviation-plant workers during the Second World War, was long-listed for The Scotiabank Giller Prize and a ReLit Award. It was also podcast on CBC Radio. In 2015, her book, co-edited with David Eso, Where the Nights are Twice as Long: Love Letters of Canadian Poets was published by Goose Lane Editions. Her monograph on Canadian Poet M. Travis Lane was published in 2015 in How Thought Feels: The Poetry of M. Travis Lane (Frog Hollow Press). She received a Women of Distinction Award in the Arts, Culture, and Heritage category in 2016 from the Saskatoon YWCA. She has been Pathy Visiting Professor of Canadian Studies at Princeton University and a Writer in Residence at several colleges as well as Saskatoon Public Library. During her time as a Visiting Fellow at Bard Graduate Center she will study poetics—specifically, metaphor—and spatiality.

Urmila Mohan

Bard Graduate Center/AMNH Postdoctoral Fellow
in Museum Anthropology, Fall 2016–Summer 2018

Urmila Mohan is Bard Graduate Center/AMNH Postdoctoral Fellow in Museum Anthropology, a two-year appointment at Bard Graduate Center and in the Anthropology Division at the Richard Gilder Graduate School of the American Museum of Natural History. She has a deep knowledge of South and Southeast Asia, a theoretical foundation in the study of material and visual culture, and direct experience with materials as an artist. Her previous doctoral work at University College London was on cloth and clothing as devotional mediation in a Hindu group in India. With her current postdoctoral project she expands her research focus to include Hinduism in Southeast Asia in a museological context. Urmila has organized conferences and panels on the use of materials and visual imagery in relation to diverse issues such as ornament, nationalism, and subjectivation. She is a founder and editor of the Material Religions blog. Her teaching philosophy draws on a cross-disciplinary approach across the social sciences and arts and humanities.

The anthropologists Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson spent approximately two years (1936–38) in Bali, Indonesia, studying the kinaesthetics of performance, including everyday gestures and rituals such as trance. While their contribution to visual anthropology via the methodological use of photography and film has been studied, what is less known is their collection of Balinese objects. The AMNH’s Indonesian collection has a strong Balinese section with numerous cloth wrappers, mythological paintings, amuletic cloth drawings, and representations of textiles in other media such as puppets, offerings, and drawings, collected by Mead and Bateson. In her project, Urmila will study these objects and the ways in which they can be contextualized through museum archives and primary ethnographic literature in the Mead Ethnographic Archives (Library of Congress, DC). A critical study of field notes, films, and photographs may shed light on the changing values of cloth objects as they traveled from Bali to the West, indicate how cloth related to curatorial agendas in shaping a specific image of the Balinese, and provide a historical view of pre-World War II anthropology. Urmila’s research will culminate in a Focus Gallery exhibit and symposium in February 2018.

Jeffrey Moser

Research Fellow, February–April 2018

Jeffrey Moser is Assistant Professor of the History of Art and Architecture at Brown University. A specialist in the artistic and intellectual history of China during the Song-Yuan era (tenth to fourteenth centuries AD), his research focuses on the ways in which sensory engagement with material things transformed historical approaches to the challenges of making, reasoning, and knowing. His interest in the catalytic potency of objects extends from the historical dimensions of his research to the contemporary challenges of university and museum education. Prior to joining the faculty at Brown in 2015, Moser taught at McGill University and Zhejiang University. He is currently completing a book manuscript entitled Nominal Things: Bronzes, Schemata, and Hermeneutics of Facture in Northern Song China. His research articles have appeared in the Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies, Journal of Song-Yuan Studies, and elsewhere. During his time at Bard Graduate Center, Moser will be focusing on his new project Excavating China’s First Archaeologist, a micro-historical study of a prominent Northern Song (960–1127) clan of scholar-officials and antiquarians based on the material remains of their recently uncovered cemetery.

Mark Salber Phillips

Research Fellow, January 2018

Mark Salber Phillips is an intellectual historian who engages with questions of historical representation. His most recent book, On Historical Distance (Yale, 2013) won the Canadian Historical Association’s Ferguson Prize. He is also the author of Society and Sentiment: Genres of Historical Writing in Britain, 1740–1820(Princeton, 2000), The Memoir of Marco Parenti:A Life in Renaissance Florence(Princeton, 1987), and Francesco Guicciardini: The Historian’s Craft (Toronto and Manchester, 1974). He has also co-edited Re-thinking Historical Distance (Palgrave, 2013) and Questions of Tradition (Toronto, 2004). He has been a Visiting Professor at the University of Chicago and King’s College, London, and a Visiting Research Fellow in the Department of the History of Art at Yale University. He has been awarded fellowships by the Guggenheim; the Clark Art Institute; CASVA; the Yale Center for British Art; Peterhouse, Emmanuel College, and King’s College, Cambridge; the Australian National University; the Folger Shakespeare Library; the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton; and the Villa I Tatti. His current project is a study of history painting in Britain, 1700 to 1900. He teaches history at Carleton University in Ottawa.

Elizabeth Rodini

Visiting Fellow, January–May 2018

Elizabeth Rodini works on cross-cultural encounters in the early modern period, recently focusing on matters of object mobility, recontextualization, and reuse in early modern Venice. Her publications in this field include “Imitation as a Mercantile Strategy: The Case of Damascene Ware,” in Typical Venice? Venetian Commodities, 13th–16th Centuries (Brepols, at press), and “The Sultan’s True Face? Gentile Bellini, Mehmet II, and the Value of Verisimilitude,” in The “Turk” and Islam in the Western Eye (1453–1832) (Ashgate, 2011). She is currently writing a book-length study of Bellini’s Mehmet portrait, constructed as an object biography and methodological reader. She received her PhD from the University of Chicago.

As Founding Director of the Program in Museums and Society at Johns Hopkins University, Rodini works between the museum and academia and has published on museum and collection history, museum scholarship, and cultural landscapes. Her work at Bard Graduate Center will build on a forthcoming article, “Mobile Things: On the Origins and Meanings of Levantine Objects in Early Modern Venice” (Art History, 2018), extending its documentary investigations into the sphere of the museum and exploring strategies for re-activating once peripatetic collection objects. This work will be grounded in artifacts in New York City collections that spanned the Mediterranean literally or conceptually, in order to bridge material, historical, and institutional approaches to the study of early modern mobility.

Olaya Sanfuentes

Visiting Fellow, June–July 2018

Olaya Sanfuentes is an Associate Professor in the History Department of Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. She received her PhD in Art History from Universitat Autónoma of Barcelona. Her research has focused on material religion, especially on the devotion of Saint James the Apostle both in terms of iconography and rituality. She has also done research on the celebration of Christmas in Chile during the last two centuries. Her publications include: “From the Feast Day in Belén to the Museum in Salta: Three-Dimensional Images of Saint James the Apostle in Two Different Contexts” in Material Religion: The Journal of Objects, Art and Belief (Vol 13, 2017); “Christmas Nativity Scenes in Late Nineteenth-Century Santiago de Chile” in The Oxford Handbook of Material Culture (in press); and “San Santiago de Belén: Un Guerrero más allá de las Fronteras,” in Fronteras: Procesos y Practicas de Integración y Conflicto entre Europa y América (siglos XVI-XX)(Fondo de Cultura Económica, 2016).

At Bard Graduate Center she would like to develop the concept of distance that is articulating the discussion this year. She proposes a definition of distance as a subjective concept (depending on subjects individually and collectively) mediated by objects, through the specific case of the Christmas present. The specificity of the gift is capable of shortening or widening the distances among the individuals. The value assigned to what is given carries implicitly the kind of relation we want to establish with our counterpart. Since she has already worked on the topic of Christmas presents in Santiago de Chile at the beginning of the twentieth century, she would like to collate her preliminary conclusions with specialists, as well as delve into the case of New York for a comparative analysis. For this she would like to have conversations with experts in the area of material culture and do her research at the BGC Library and the New York Public Library.

Corinne Thépaut-Cabasset

Research Fellow, October–November 2017

Corinne Thépaut-Cabasset is Research Associate at the Château de Versailles and currently Marie Sklodowska-Curie Research Fellow at the Centre for Textile Research/SAXO Institute at the University of Copenhagen (Denmark). She is an early modern historian and art historian specializing in the history of decorative arts, fashion and dress, and global trade, with a particular emphasis on the interrelation between art, trade, and diplomacy. She has edited the series of fashion articles published in the Mercure Galant: L’Esprit des Modes au Grand Siècle (CTHS, Paris, 2010). Her publications reflect the various topics she carried out for her research on dress and textiles. They explore, from different perspectives, the ways in which archival sources interact with object based studies. Addressing research on dress and textiles, she aims to restore the threads of history, material culture, and visual culture. Her current research “Dressing the New World” looks at textiles and fashionable goods in the early modern Americas. Furthermore, it intends to understand in detail the trade mechanism of European commodities and fashionable goods in everyday life in a colonial system. Previously, she was appointed as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow by the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, for the three-year international research project (2010–2013) “Fashioning the Early Modern: Creativity and Innovation in Europe 1500–1800,” funded by Humanities in the Research Area (HERA), investigating the creativity and innovation that lay behind the creation and spread of fashionable goods in Early Modern Europe. She also contributed to the V&A Galleries “Europe 1600–1815.” At Bard Graduate Center, she will be working on her book manuscript “Dressing the New World: The Trade and the Culture of Clothing in the New Spanish Colonies 1600–1800.”

Otto von Busch

Visiting Fellow, February–May 2018

Otto von Busch is Associate Professor of Integrated Design at Parsons School of Design, holds a PhD in design from the School of Design and Craft at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, and was previously Professor of Textiles at Konstfack, Stockholm. He has a background in arts, craft, design, and theory, and his research explores the emergence of a new “hacktivist” designer role in fashion, where the designer engages participants to reform fashion from a phenomenon of dictations and anxiety to a collective experience of empowerment. It is a role that experiments with how fashion can be reverse engineered, hacked, tuned, and shared among many participants as a form of social activism. This is an engaged and collective process of enablement, creative resistance, and DIY practice, where a community share methods and experiences on how to expand action spaces and develop new forms of craftsmanship.

He has published articles on these perspectives on design, fashion, and craft in The Design Journal, Critical Studies in Fashion and Beauty, Organizational Aesthetics, CoDesign Journal, The Journal of Modern Craft, Textile Cloth and Culture, Craft Research, Creative Industries Journal, and Journal for Artistic Research & Fashion Practice. His book chapters have appeared in The Routledge Handbook of Sustainable Product Design (2017), The Routledge Companion to Design Research(2015), as well as The Routledge Handbook of Sustainability and Fashion (2014).

At Bard Graduate Center, he will examine a series of craft objects from the perspective of craft as a form of material cunning and agency, that is, craft as a mode of material power. Craft is a political modus operandi which moves the hands of the maker closer to power, with the possibility to touch and manipulate its workings. Making thus bypasses petitions and discourse, which per definition position governance as “above and beyond” through political representation, to instead suggest the political mode of direct action. He will specifically examine this perspective in relation to the work and legacy of educator and craftsman William Coperthwaite (1930–2013).

Amanda Wunder

Research Fellow, September–December 2017

Amanda Wunder is Associate Professor of History at the City University of New York’s Lehman College in the Bronx. She is also on the faculty of the Art History department and the Renaissance Studies program at the CUNY Graduate Center, where she teaches graduate seminars on early modern Iberian art and material culture and on early modern European fashions and textiles. She is the author of Baroque Seville: Sacred Art in a Century of Crisis, published by Penn State Press in 2017. At Bard Graduate Center, she will be working on a new book about fashion controversies and gender politics in early modern Spain. Previous publications on this subject include an interdisciplinary study of the Spanish farthingale called the guardainfante that appeared in Renaissance Quarterly 68:1 (March 2015) and a chapter on fashion innovations during the reign of Philip IV in Fashioning the Early Modern: Dress, Textiles and Innovation in Europe, 1500-1800, edited by Evelyn Welch (Oxford, 2017). She is currently preparing a chapter on sumptuary legislation in Spain from the late-medieval period through the eighteenth century for a global history of sumptuary laws edited by Giorgio Riello and Ulinka Rublack.