Michael Assis comes to Bard Graduate Center from Tel Aviv University, where he received a BA in Philosophy and Art History and completed an MA in Art History, focusing on early modern Italian art. Following his master’s thesis on Benvenuto Cellini’s seal designs for the Accademia del Disegno (c. 1563), his current research interests lie in medieval and early modern Italian goldsmithing and metalwork, specifically the complex and obscure role goldsmithing served in relation to the other arts. Michael has spent time working with the Medici Archive Project in the Archivio di Stato in Florence and as a visiting graduate student at the University of Toronto. Beyond his academic work, he has worked with the Old Master Paintings department at Tiroche Auction House in Israel and managed several art collections for private dealers, galleries, and corporate entities.

Antonia Behan completed her BA in the History of Religion with a focus on Sanskrit at the University of Toronto in 2009. She completed pre-program conservation training working mainly with textiles. Her dissertation, “ ‘The Brain of the Machine’: Ethel Mairet’s Textile Laboratory” examines the legacies of the Arts and Crafts movement in South Asia, the history and philosophy of technology, and cosmopolitan modernism. Her other interests include the history and theory of conservation.

Julie Bellemare researches Chinese decorative arts of the Qing dynasty (1644-1911), focusing on the development of new color technologies across ceramic, enamel, and glass. She holds a BA in Art History and East Asian Studies from McGill University, a Postgraduate Diploma in Asian Art from the School of Oriental and African Studies, and an MSt in the History of Art and Visual Culture from the University of Oxford, where she presented a thesis on design books replicating Asian and Asia-inspired imagery in Europe. She pursued academic fluency in modern and classical Chinese in Taiwan, together with graduate studies in Chinese literature and art history. Her published research explores issues surrounding the cross-cultural legibility of objects. She has previously worked at the Asian art departments of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Brooklyn Museum, and Freer|Sackler.

Adam Brandow brings diverse academic and professional experiences to his doctoral work at the BGC. He received a BA in Musicology and German from Bates College (2003), an MA from the Bard Graduate Center (2009) and was a PhD student in Art History at the CUNY Graduate Center (2009–2010). He worked as a silver specialist at Christie’s from 2010–2014, a furniture restoration apprentice at a prominent New York dealer from 2016–2017, and is currently Research Associate in the Department of Arms and Armor at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, where he has collaborated on the forthcoming loan exhibition The Last Knight: The Art, Armor, and Ambition of Maximilian I. His research interests bridge theory and object-based study, and grow out of his numerous positions in academia, the trade, and museums, and focus on the histories and philosophies of connoisseurship, collecting, and the decorative art market; worlds in which the skill of “knowing what one is seeing” remains useful and indeed fundamental.

Martina D’Amato’s research interests include the history and theory of collecting and museums, national artistic traditions and transnationalism, and revivalism as a modern phenomenon in Europe during the long nineteenth century. Her dissertation focuses on the politicization of collections and historiographies of medieval and Renaissance art in the early years of Third Republic France and the Kingdom of Italy. She holds a BA from New York University (2009) and an MA from the BGC (2012); her MA qualifying paper examined the collection of Lyonnais banker Maurice Chabrières-Arlès. She has contributed to the following publications: Georges Hoentschel and French Decorative Arts from the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2013) and The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design (2015). Currently, she works as a research assistant at the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, and at Cora Ginsburg LLC, where she has written for the gallery’s annual catalogue since 2015. She previously worked at the BGC as Curatorial Fellow on the exhibitions Visualizing 19th-Century New York (2014), The Interface Experience: Forty Years of Personal Computing (2015) and Design by the Book: Illustrating the Chinese Ritual Classics (2017), as well as at The Frick Collection and the New-York Historical Society.

William DeGregorio studies the history of western costume and textiles, focusing primarily on the eighteenth century and the early twentieth century. He graduated magna cum laude from Tufts University with a BA in English in 2008 and completed his MA at the Bard Graduate Center in 2012 with a qualifying paper entitled Trompeuse Simplicité: Reconstructing the Oeuvre, Personality, Clientele, and Decline of Augustabernard, 1928-1934. For his work, he was awarded the Clive Wainwright Award. His research interests include the formation of private and institutional costume collections, the historiography of fashion studies, dealers, and the museum exhibition of historic costume, with a particular emphasis on the presentation/collection of eighteenth century costume and accessories. He has contributed to the exhibition catalogues Scaasi: American Couturier (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 2010), Staging Fashion, 1880-1920: Jane Hading, Lily Elsie, Billie Burke (Bard Graduate Center, 2012), Salvaging the Past: Georges Hoentschel and French Decorative Arts from The Metropolitan Museum of Art (Bard Graduate Center, 2013), and Elegance in an Age of Crisis: Fashions of the 1930s (Fashion Institute of Technology, 2014). He works as a conservation technician and research assistant at the Museum of the City of New York, most recently working on the exhibition Stephen Burrows: When Fashion Danced, and at Cora Ginsburg LLC as a research assistant, writing for the gallery’s annual catalogue since 2012.

Christina L. De León’s research interests lie in the material culture and decorative arts of the Americas, specifically the impact of international modernist principals on the creation of a regional visual vocabulary during the post-war era. She is also fascinated by the pioneering role of women, who were crucial in the establishment and reception of a modern aesthetic and lifestyle throughout the Americas. From 2010-2016 she was Associate Curator at Americas Society where she worked on modern and contemporary art exhibitions and publications. She co-curated the shows For Rent: Marc Latamie (2012), Cristóbal Lehyt: Iris Sheets (2013), and Told and Untold: The Photo Stories of Kati Horna in the Illustrated Press (2016). De León contributed to the catalogue Moderno: Design for Living in Brazil, Mexico, and Venezuela 1940-1978 and has written articles for the periodical Review and Americas Quarterly. She held previous positions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Cloisters Museum and Gardens.

Joyce Denney received an MA in East Asian Studies at Columbia University in 1999 and worked for several years as a textile specialist in the Department of Asian Art and the Antonio Ratti Textile Center at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. There, she curated small focus exhibitions such as Astonishing Silhouettes: Western Fashions in 19th-Century Japanese Prints (2009) and also wrote essays on textile-related subjects for East Asian exhibition catalogues, such as “Mongol Dress in the 13th and 14th Centuries” in The World of Khubilai Khan: Chinese Art in the Yuan Dynasty (2010). Recently, she served on the curatorial team that produced the exhibition Interwoven Globe: The Worldwide Textile Trade, 1500-1800, held at the Metropolitan Museum in 2013-2014, for which she wrote a catalogue essay entitled “Japan and the Textile Trade in Context.” Her current research takes up where her work on the Interwoven Globe left off, exploring the striking physical, historical, cultural, and intercultural aspects of a seventeenth-century set of monumental wall hangings embroidered in China on the European theme of the Story of Troy.

Lauren Drapala
is primarily interested in 20th century American architecture and design. With a particular focus on immersive decorative interiors (also known as Gesamtkunstwerk or “total works of art”), she is interested in exploring the role of decorative art within the development of early modernism, as well as the issues surrounding interior spaces as they relate to relocation, preservation and fragmentation. She has worked as an architectural conservator on restoration projects throughout the United States and holds a B.A. in Art History from Smith College and an M.S. in Historic Preservation from the University of Pennsylvania. Continuing research that began during her 2010 masters thesis, she has published her research on the work of decorative artist Robert Winthrop Chanler (1872-1930) in Rediscovering the Fantastic: Robert Winthrop Chanler (2016, Monacelli Press), and is currently serving as a co-curator for a traveling exhibition of Chanler’s decorative work with the Preservation Society of Newport County.

Colin Fanning’s
research interests encompass European and American architecture and design from the mid-nineteenth century to the present, with focuses in the material culture of childhood (especially architectural toys and video game design), postwar studio craft, and design pedagogy in the United States. He received a BFA in interior design from Syracuse University (2009) and an MA from Bard Graduate Center in 2013 with his qualifying paper “The Plastic System: Architecture, Childhood, and LEGO, 1949–2012.” He has held positions at the Museum of Arts and Design and the American Federation of Arts, and has taught the history of modern design in the Westphal College of Arts and Design at Drexel University. Prior to returning to BGC as a doctoral student, he held a three-year appointment as Curatorial Fellow for European Decorative Arts and Sculpture at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where he worked with the museum’s collection of modern and contemporary design. In that role, he co-curated the exhibitions The Architecture of Francis Kéré: Building for Community (2016) and Design Currents: Oki Sato, Faye Toogood, Zanini de Zanine (2016–17), and singly curated the exhibition Channeling Nature by Design (2017). Most recently, he curated the exhibition Dieter Rams: Principled Design (2018–19) for the Philadelphia Museum of Art and continues to consult on other projects for the museum.

Marjorie Folkman A summa cum laude graduate of Barnard College, where she is a Term Associate Professor of Professional Practice with the Department of Dance, Folkman holds an M.A. from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. A PhD candidate at the Bard Graduate Center, Folkman is researching European interwar visual culture and its intersections with choreography. Folkman was a member and principal performer with Mark Morris Dance Group (1996-2007), Martha Clarke’s Garden of Earthly Delights (2007-2009), Merce Cunningham’s Repertory Understudy Group, and choreographer Sara Rudner among others. Choreographic projects include productions for Boston Baroque (Pigmalion and Les Indes Galantes), L’Opéra Français de New York (Faust), Bard SummerScape (Der Ferne) Klang, Le Roi Malgré Lui and Oresteia directed by Thaddeus Strassberger), Paul’s Case for the Prototype Festival/New York, and collaborations with visual artist Kevork Mourad, poet Robert Kelly, and new music ensemble Contemporaneous. Folkman has taught with Lincoln Center Institute, as a Guest Artist at Phillips Academy Andover and Mount Holyoke College, as an Adjunct Lecturer in Dance History at Sarah Lawrence College, and as Visiting Assistant Professor in Dance and First Year Seminar with affiliations in Language & Thinking, Bard College.

Nicholas de Godoy Lopes received his Master’s in the History of Design and Curatorial Studies in the Parsons/Cooper-Hewitt program. His thesis studied Art Nouveau pattern books as disseminators of theories of ornament centered on nature and shaped by the natural sciences, particularly biology. His interests include late-nineteenth-century design in Europe, the United States, and Japan, intersections of design and science, historical practices of displaying material culture, revivalism and historicism, and the design of contemporary tabletop games. Before coming to the BGC, he spent ten months as the McDermott intern in Decorative Arts and Design at the Dallas Museum of Art. He has also interned in the European Sculpture & Decorative Arts department at the Met and was a fellow in the Wallcoverings department at the Cooper-Hewitt.

Christine Griffiths is a Ph.D. Candidate in early modern European visual and material culture, under the supervision of Professor Deborah Krohn. She holds a B.A. in Art History and Anthropology from Stony Brook University and an M.A. in Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture from Bard Graduate Center. Her work focuses on artisanal practices, gardens, and material cultures of natural history, especially on the circulation of objects, books, and people between Britain, Europe, and the larger world. Christine’s dissertation, “From Garden to Toilette: Cultivating Perfume in Early Modern Britain,” highlights the making of perfume through close study of its constituent raw materials, including roses, orange blossom, and ambergris. Her work takes an interdisciplinary approach, employing recent methodologies from art history, anthropology, and history of the book, science, and medicine. Christine’s research has been supported by fellowships and grants from Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, New York Botanical Garden, Rare Book School, and the British Society for the History of Science.

Anne Hilker studies the relationship between law and things. Combining legal, archival, and historical research, her dissertation examines gifts to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, with a focus on New York State tax law in the early twentieth century and the negotiation and terms of conditional gifts. She works also on embroidery and kit craft in the second half of the twentieth century, and is currently co-curating an exhibition on the career of Erica Wilson scheduled to open in September, 2020 at the Winterthur Museum. She holds an MA in the History of Design from Parsons and the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum. She also holds a BSJ from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism and, from the University of Southern California, a JD (Law School) and MA, Communications Management (Annenberg School of Communications). She practiced law for 25 years as a tax and trusts and estates lawyer in New York and California, including five years of service as chair of the New York City Bar Association’s Committee on Trusts, Estates, and Surrogate’s Courts.

Michelle Jackson-Beckett’s research focuses on nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Central European and American design and architecture, especially the history of glass at the intersection of industrial and artistic contexts. She holds a master’s degree in the History of Design from Parsons and the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, and holds degrees in German Language/Literature and Art History from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich and Saint Joseph’s University, Philadelphia. Currently on the faculty for the MFA Industrial Design program at Parsons, she teaches courses on the history of American and European industrial design and visual culture, spanning 1750 to the present. Formerly she has lectured in the Glass Department at RISD and has held positions at Neue Galerie New York, Museum for German and Austrian Art, Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, and Sotheby’s 20th Century Design. Her work has been published by the Courtauld Institute of Art and she has lectured at conferences for the Design History Society, the College Art Association, the International Council of Museums, the Victorian Society of America, and the Mid-Atlantic Popular and American Culture Association, among others. Jackson is the Director of Archives and Publications at R & Company, a postwar and contemporary design gallery located in Tribeca.

Christian Larsen is Curator at Wolfsonian-Florida International University, where his research focuses on nineteenth and twentieth-century Latin American material culture with a specialization in Brazil. He has been honored with the Emily Hall Tremaine Exhibition Award for Philodendron: From Pan-Latin Exotic to American Modern (November 2015) and is organizing a major exhibition and catalogue on the “ties of singular intimacy” between Cuba and the United States as documented in photography and material culture during Cuba’s Republican era (1902-1959). As a former curator in the Architecture & Design Department, MoMA (2000-08), he organized exhibitions including Digitally Mastered (2006-07), 50 Years of Helvetica (2007-08), and Ateliers Jean Prouvé (2008-09). He received his BA in English and French from Amherst College (2000), and MA (2010) and MPhil (2013) in Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture from the Bard Graduate Center, where he was a former curatorial fellow. He is currently a doctoral candidate finishing his dissertation Aquarela do Brasil: Transnational Flows of Brazilian Design and Material Culture. His recent publications include two chapters in History of Design, Decorative Arts, and Material Culture 1400-2000 (Yale University Press).

Julia Grace Lillie is a PhD Candidate studying the print culture of early modern Northern Europe. Her dissertation investigates the effects of the expulsion of reformed religious groups from the Southern Netherlands upon print, book and map production in late sixteenth-century Cologne. Julia’s work deals with the creation and dissemination of knowledge through print, artist networks across national borders, and the education and scholarly ambitions of printmakers. She received a BA in Art History and Modern History from the University of St. Andrews (2008) and an MA from the BGC (2014). She has held positions in the Department of Drawings and Prints at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and at International Print Center New York.

Boxi Liu researches Chinese art and archaeology from the seventh through the thirteenth century. He received his BA from the University of Delaware where he double majored in Art Conservation and Japanese Studies. Before coming to the BGC, he studied at the Soka University in Japan for a year and completed his MA in Eastern Asian Languages and Civilizations at the University of Pennsylvania in 2019. His current research primarily concentrates on the decorative and funerary arts of the Liao (907-1125), Song (960-1279), and Jin (1115-1234) dynasties. He has previously worked as a conservation intern at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, the Hagley Museum and Library, and the Shaanxi History Museum in China. He has contributed to the Hagley Museum and Library’s traveling exhibition Power of Innovation: Patent Models from the United States of America (2018) held at the National Museum of China.

Rebecca Jumper Matheson is a fashion historian, focusing on nineteenth- and twentieth-century American women’s dress. She uses interdisciplinary approaches to dress studies as a means of discovering women’s narratives as designers, makers, sellers, and consumers. Her recent projects have dealt with millinery, leather goods, teenage fashion in the 1940s, and dress for long-distance train travel. She is the author of two monographs, The Sunbonnet: An American Icon in Texas (2009) and Young Originals: Emily Wilkens and the Teen Sophisticate (2015). She has also published articles in journals such as Dress, essays in proceedings publications from the Museum of Fine Arts Houston/Bayou Bend’s Warren Symposium and the Dublin Seminar for New England Folklife, as well as contributed a chapter to The Places and Spaces of Fashion: 1800–2006 (2008). Matheson is an adjunct instructor in the MA program in Fashion and Textile Studies at the Fashion Institute of Technology, and was previously employed in the Costume Institute, the Metropolitan Museum of Art. She holds a BA from Rice University, a JD from the University of Texas at Austin, and an MA from FIT, where she received an Educational Foundation for the Fashion Industries Award.

Emma McClendon is the Associate Curator of Costume at The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), where she has curated several exhibitions including Denim: Fashion’s Frontier (2015), The Body: Fashion and Physique (2017), and Power Mode: The Force of Fashion (2019). Her research focuses on the social and political implications of fashion with a particular interest in body politics and the history of standardized sizing. Emma received a B.A. in Art History from the University of St. Andrews and an M.A. in the History of Dress from the Courtauld Institute of Art. She recently co-edited a special issue of the academic journal Fashion Theory with Dr. Joanne Entwistle around the theme of her 2017 exhibition The Body: Fashion and Physique. Other recent publications include, Yves Saint Laurent + Halston: Fashioning the 70s (2015, Yale University Press), Denim: Fashion’s Frontier (2016, Yale University Press), and Power Mode: The Force of Fashion (2019, Skira).

Rebecca Perry is a PhD candidate at the Bard Graduate Center, where she has focused her studies on the history of costume and dress, specifically children’s clothing in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. She received her BA in Art History from Skidmore College and her MA and MPhil in the History of Decorative Arts and Design from the BGC. Rebecca is currently employed as the Senior Research Assistant for Acquisitions at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where she works with donors, auction houses, and costume dealers to cultivate and expand the department’s collection of more than 35,000 garments and accessories. Previously, she was the Costume Institute’s Curatorial Graduate Research Intern, where she assisted with the exhibitions research for American Woman: Fashioning a National Identity; Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty; and Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations. Her doctoral dissertation is entitled “Problematic Bodies: Dressing Pre-Adolescent Girls in the United States, 1930–1960.” This work explores the various discourses that surrounded pre-adolescent and adolescent girls’ physiques in this period, including how girls were taught to maintain or control their bodies by means of beauty rituals and clothing as they transitioned through puberty.

Geoffrey Ripert’s research interests focus on French eighteenth-century Decorative Arts, particularly the taste for hardstones and marble objects, the reasons why these were mounted, as well as their display and function in the secular interior. He is interested in investigating how these were created, from the mining of raw material to the finished work of art, including the patrons, artisans and intermediaries involved in the process. He also explores the survival of Greco-Roman antiquity in the material culture of eighteenth-century Europe. Previously, he was Curatorial Assistant for Decorative Arts at the Frick Collection for almost four years, a fellow at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, worked as assistant to an art dealer specialized in European Decorative Arts in Paris, and interned at the Musée du Louvre. He holds an M.A. in Curatorial Studies and Art Collection Management from the Ecole du Louvre, an M.A. in the History of the Arts from the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Paris, and a B.A. in the History of Art and Archaeology from Sorbonne University.

Antonio Sanchez Gomez
is an academic researcher and lecturer from Bogota, Colombia. He has a BA in Graphic Design and an MA in History and Theory of Art, Architecture, and the City from the National University of Colombia and an MA in the Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture from the Bard Graduate Center. His interests are focused on Latin American material culture, design history and urban history with a particular sensibility for gender issues. He has taught at the National University of Colombia, Piloto University and Valle’s University in Bogota. He also published few articles on the material culture of domestic and urban spaces in Bogotá and the book “Manos al agua: una historia de aguas, lavado de ropas y lavanderas en Bogotá” [Hands in the Water: a History of Waters, Clothes Washing and Washing Women in Bogotá]. He writes that “During my MA at the BGC I found myself intrigued by textiles. This new fascination led into my Qualifying Paper Chronicles of the Chuspas: A history of Two Objects in Three Acts. I am very excited to be present in such an important moment for Latin American art history and design studies in the U.S.A. This renewed interest is well represented by the upcoming exhibitions in art, design and craft in all the main venues in the city including the BGC Gallery. During my PhD I look forward to go back to my interest in urban history in Latin America, this time concentrating in the history of electricity in the public and domestic space.”

Sarah Scaturro is the Head Conservator of The Costume Institute in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where she is in charge of the preservation of the fashion collection, the display of fashion, and the development of the conservation research program. Drawn to Bard Graduate Center because of its multi-disciplinary focus and its “Cultures of Conservation” initiative, she studies the theory and practice of fashion and design conservation. Previously, she was the Assistant Fashion Curator/Textile Conservator at the Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, a dual position created in recognizance of her experiences and abilities in both the conservation and curation of fashion and textiles. She has curated several exhibitions, including “Lucien Lelong: Modern Master” at Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology (2006), “Ethics + Aesthetics = Sustainable Fashion” at Pratt Manhattan Gallery (2009), and most recently “The Secret Life of Textiles: Synthetic Materials” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2017). Her research interests include the materiality/rematerializing of fashion and the preservation of synthetic materials within 20th and 21st century design. She recently published a chapter titled “Confronting Fashion’s Death Drive: Conservation, Ghost Labor, and the Material Turn within Fashion Curation” in the book Fashion Curating: Critical Practice in the Museum and Beyond (2017) by Bloomsbury Publishing. She earned a BA, summa cum laude, from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and an MA at the Fashion Institute of Technology, where she received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Academic Excellence. She can be found online at www.exhibitingfashion.com.

Courtney A. Stewart is Senior Research Assistant in the Department of Islamic Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where she has worked on exhibition research and the permanent collection since 2010. Stemming from interests piqued during the research of Golconda diamonds for the exhibition Sultans of Deccan India: Opulence and Fantasy (2015), Courtney’s work focuses on the history and cultural significance of jewelry and gemstones, and the intersection of art and nature. She holds an MA from Bard Graduate Center (2010), an MA in Museum Studies from the University of Toronto (2005), a BA Honours in Comparative Literature from Western University, in London, Canada (2003), and is completing the Graduate Gemologist program at the Gemological Institute of America. Courtney has taught Islamic art history at the University of Toronto and New York University.

Elizabeth St. George is a specialist in late nineteenth and twentieth-century architecture and design and a doctoral candidate at the BGC, where she also received her M.A. She is currently a visiting lecturer at Pratt Institute, teaching courses on the history of interiors and industrial design, and an exhibitions assistant at the BGC Gallery. She has been an invited speaker at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and Brown University and has served as a researcher for the BGC Gallery’s exhibitions Knoll Textiles (2011), William Kent (2013), Waterweavers (2013), and the forthcoming Artek: Modern Design for the Global World and John Lockwood Kipling (working titles). Her dissertation is a study of the famed Czechoslovak design cooperative Krásná jizba, and will assess the collective’s creative direction by graphic designer Ladislav Sutnar and impact on discourses of the modern home and modernist living in interwar Czechoslovakia. Previous projects have also included work on California modernism and mid-century architecture and the influence of race, ethnicity, and gender on the shaping of the built environment in twentieth-century America. Her research interests also extend to the effect of migration on currents in architecture and design, how design is used to construct modes of cultural interaction and identity, and how modernism and notions of modernity were used to disseminate social, political, and cultural reform in both Europe and America.

Amanda Thompson’s research interests lie with Indigenous women’s crafts, especially as they intersect with tourist markets and the interventions, collections, and texts of white women. Amanda’s Qualifying Paper for her Bard Graduate Center MA, “Mrs. Colcleugh is not an average woman”: The Domestic and the Native in U.S. Women’s Travel Journalism, ca. 1885-1905,” received its Clive A. Wainwright Award. Professionally, Amanda served as Director of Exhibitions for the Museum for African Art managing the development and implementation of exhibitions around the world and Collections Manager for the New-York Historical Society overseeing over 80,000 objects of material culture. She has also held positions at the Guggenheim Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The Jewish Museum. Additionally, Amanda holds an MA in Arts Administration from Columbia University and a BA in Art History and Women’s Studies from Pomona College.

Leonie Sophie Treier, originally from Berlin, received her BA in Liberal Arts from University College Maastricht focusing on cultural and museum studies. During a visiting term at the University of California, Los Angeles she developed a keen interest in the relations between source communities and museums, which she engaged with further in her MPhil in Visual, Material and Museum Anthropology at the University of Oxford. In her master’s thesis she researched the photographic archive of Barbara Freire-Marreco, the first female anthropologist graduating from the University of Oxford in 1908, her fieldwork in New Mexico, and the contemporary meanings of her photographs to local Pueblo communities. At the BGC, Leonie will explore the changing role of museums in the 21st century and their shifting relationships with communities through the lens of repatriation. She understands repatriation as a productive means to address the history of museum collections and hopes to identify strategies of presenting the processes behind and relations involved in such returns to the public to initiate critical historical reflection.

Rebecca C. Tuite is a fashion historian and writer from London. She graduated from the University of Exeter with a BA (Hons) in English (Class I), and completed part of her undergraduate studies at Vassar College in New York. She also holds a MA in Fashion Journalism (Distinction Honours) from London College of Fashion. Her research interests include film and costume, fashion photography, twentieth-century American fashion, Sylvia Plath and fashion, as well as the history of women’s education in the United States, with a particular focus on the clothing and campus culture at the Seven Sisters Colleges. Rebecca’s work has been published in Fashion Theory: The Journal of Dress, Body and Culture, and she is the author of Seven Sisters Style: The All-American Preppy Look (Rizzoli), and The 1950s in Vogue: The Jessica Daves Years, 1952-1962 (forthcoming from Thames & Hudson).

Xiaoyi D. Yang is interested in traditional East Asian decorative arts and material culture. Her research areas are Chinese and Japanese ceramics, medieval and early modern Japanese tea culture, East-West commercial and cultural interaction, and the recontextualization of East Asian objects in Western museums. In particular, she works on the aesthetic and technological exchanges between Chinese, Japanese, and European potters since the late sixteenth century and aims to shed new light on less well-known kilns. Yang held an M.A. degree from Columbia University and had studied at the Central University of Nationalities, Peking University, etc. She has done internships at the American Museum of Natural History, Japan Society, Shanghai Museum, and National Museum of China.