Message from the Chair

In many ways the new academic year began in June, when we packed up our belongings in Pomerene Hall and moved across campus to our new, temporary quarters on the 5th floor of Smith Lab.  The space in Smith is bright and more than big enough, even if it lacks the charm—especially the fine woodworking, molded ceilings, and exposed brick walls—of Pomerene.  We look forward to returning to those things and more (including a fully functional HVAC system) when we take up residence again in the renovated building in the fall of 2018.  In the meantime, though, please note our change of address.

We also welcomed into our new space, and into the program, four new doctoral students this fall: Stephanie Kang, who received her MFA from Washington University in St. Louis and has come to study contemporary art; Clayton Kindred, fresh from his Master’s Program in Public Affairs at Brown University, who will be studying nineteenth-century European art; Caroline Koncz, who earned an MA in Art History from Webster University and intends to continue her work on the Italian Renaissance; and Natalie Pretzman, one of our own undergraduate alumni, who received her Master’s in Art History and Museum Studies from Case Western and has now come back to us to pursue her PhD in modern European art.  Also new to us this year is Emily Neumeier, our ACLS Postdoctoral Fellow in Islamic art and architecture, who most recently was at the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florence as a collaborator in the research group “Objects in the Contact Zone: The Cross-Cultural Lives of Things.” Emily will be giving a public lecture on her work sometime during spring semester; look for details on the “events” page of our website later in the year.

While on the subject of Florence and cross-cultural lives, I should mention that Christian Kleinbub and Amanda Gluibizzi have now returned from their year at Villa I Tatti.  Namiko Kunimoto is also back in Columbus after having spent much of last spring and summer in Tokyo and Kyoto on a Japan Foundation Fellowship.  Even as we receive them back into the fold, however, we say a temporary goodbye to Judy Andrews, who was the recipient this year of both a Guggenheim Fellowship and a Fulbright.  She will be spending the next two semesters doing research for her forthcoming book, China Roar: Painting Societies and the Creation of Modern Art, 1919-1949.

Our graduate students have also been extremely successful on the fellowship front.  In fact, we currently have three Presidential Fellows in our PhD program: Ankur Desai, Rebecca Howard, and Yanfei (“Effie”) Yin.  Combined with the fellowship awarded to Elise David by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, we feel very fortunate—and proud, obviously—that our senior graduate students are doing so well in these very selective competitions.

The year promises to be a busy one, with numerous visitors slated to come and give talks: Frederic Tuten, Christiane Gruber, Helen Molesworth, Roger White and Sharon Core in September; Youngna Kim, Molly Warnock and Kate Markoski in October; Gloria Sutton in November, and Darcy Grimaldo Grigsby in December.  The spring line-up promises to be equally exciting—Darby English will be giving our Ludden Lecture on February 28—so please check back here in January for news of the semester ahead.

Lisa Florman

Professor and Chair