Past Lectures


Graduate Program Lunchtime Discussions

Douglas Crimp
2017 - A discussion of two chapters from Douglas Crimp’s recent memoir, Before Pictures (University of Chicago Press, 2016), a remarkable account of his time in New York from the late 1960s through the 1970s. Crimp is Fanny Knapp Allen Professor of Art History at the University of Rochester.


Darby English lunchtime discussion


2017 – A discussion of “The King’s Two Bodies,” a chapter from Darby English’s forthcoming book on art in an age of racial terror, which takes as its subject a cast nickel replica of the motel where Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968.




Helen Molesworth lunch

2016 – A big thanks to Helen Molesworth, Chief Curator of the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, for having spent her lunchtime with us today. It was a lively, informal discussion of the Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College exhibition that she curated for the Wexner Center for the Arts​, and the essay, “Imaginary Landscape,” that she wrote for the catalogue.



Victor Stoichita lunch

2015 – While visiting to deliver the Patrons' Circle lecture, Victor Stoichita, Universté de Fribourg in Switzerland, sat with us to informally discuss his essay "From Alberti's Finestra Aperta to Hitchcock's Rear Window: Avatars of the Scopic Drive in Painting and Film" (his contribution to a recently published book, edited by Alina Payne, Vision and its Instruments).



TJ Clark lunch

2014 – We welcomed art historian TJ Clark, Professor Emeritus, University of California - Berkeley, to discuss his most recent book Picasso and Truth: From Cubism to Guernica (2013), in conjunction with the Wexner Center for the Arts' 25th-Anniversary exhibition Transfigurations: Modern Masters from the Wexner Family Collection.


Patrons’ Circle Lecture Series

This lecture series, established in 2011 through the generous donations of our patrons, fosters intellectual exchange among the department’s students & faculty and members of the broader Columbus community who share our interest in art and its history.

2016 – Darcy Grimaldo Grigsby (University of California, Berkeley), Creole Degas

2015 – Victor Stoichita (University of Fribourg, Switzerland), The Don Quixote Effect: Pictorial Fiction and Aesthetic Borders in Murillo and Beyond

2014 – Michael Lobel (Purchase College, State University of New York), Ivory Tower or Gatehouse?: Art History, the Museum and the Crisis in the Humanities

2013 – Carolyn Dean (University of California, Santa Cruz), Sentient Stones: Meaning in Inca Masonry

2012 – Alexander Potts (University of Michigan), Hybrid Practices and Political Art: Asger Jorn, Joseph Beuys and the Counterculture of the 1950s and 1960s

2011 – Alexander Nagel (Institute of Fine Arts, New York University), Medieval 1960s


Ludden Lecture Series

Established in 1966 to honor professor and former department chair Franklin M. Ludden (1916-2002), these lectures are intended to reflect an interdisciplinary approach to the study of art history, with a particular emphasis on theory and criticism.

2020- Adrian Randolph (Northwestern University), The Challenge of Donatello's Magdalen

2017 – Darby English (University of Chicago), The Right to Reflect

2015 – Jas Elsner (Corpus Christi College, Oxford, and University of Chicago),Visual Ontologies: Style, Archaism and the Construction of the Sacred in the Western Tradition

2013 – Margaret Iversen (University of Essex), Rubbing, Casting, Making Strange

2011 – Kaja Silverman (University of Pennsylvania), Behold the Invisible

2009 – Andrew Stewart (University of California, Berkeley), Innovation and Individuality in Greek Sculpture

2007 – Georges Didi-Huberman (École des Hautes Études en Science Sociales, Paris), Images of Lament, Lamentable Images?

2004 – Hayden B.J. Maginnis (McMaster University, Ontario), Rome: The Missing Maps

2001 – David Rosand (Columbia University),The Lessons of Meyer Shapiro

1998 – Michael Ann Holly (Clark Art Institute), Of Origins Known and Unknown

1997 – Michael Fried, Johns Hopkins University; Some Thoughts on Caravaggio

1994 – Joseph Koerner (Harvard University), The Family Portrait

1992 – Keith Moxey (Columbia University), Art History and Critical Theory: A Renaissance Example

1990 – W.J.T. Mitchell (University of Chicago), The Violence of Public Art: Do the Right Thing

1988 – Svetlana Alpers (University of California, Berkeley), Rubens and the Engendering of Art

1987 – Norman Bryson (Harvard University), Repressing History: Gros and Napoleon


Recent PhD Lecture Series

Beginning in Spring 2002, the Department of History of Art set up a new series highlighting the work of recent PhD students through lectures focused on a wide range of content.

2020- Michael J. Hatch (PhD, Miami University), The Senses of Painting in China: 1790-1840

2020- Caitlin Beach (PhD, Fordham University), Edmonia Lewis and the Poetics of Plaster

2020- Maggie Cao (PhD, University of North Carolina), Playing Parrot: Trompe L'oeil and American Empire

2020- Joseph Salvatore Ackley (PhD, Wesleyan University), Gold's Instabilities: Controlling Radiance in Medieval Art

2017 – Kris Kersey (PhD, University of California, Berkeley), Reconsidering Physiognomy in Twelfth-Century Japanese Manuscripts

2017 – Alexis Clark (PhD, Duke University), Making a Mark: James McNeill Whistler, the Musée du Luxembourg, and World Impressionism

2016 – Molly Warnock (PhD, Johns Hopkins University), Simon Hantaï Abandons Painting

2016 – Kate Markoski (PhD, Johns Hopkins University), Merce Cunningham at Black Mountain College

2015 – Alejandra Rojas (PhD, Harvard University), Flora Incognita: Picturing Nature in the New World

2016 – Danny Marcus (PhD, University of California, Berkeley), Matisse’s Infrastructure

2015 – Elizabeth Ferrell (PhD, University of California, Berkeley), Wölfflin, The Rose, and Jay DeFeo’s Art Historical Process

2009 – Akiko Walley (PhD, Harvard University), Wheels within Wheels: The Yomo-ren Kyoka Circle and Hokusai’s “Book Cart and Porcelain Vase with Plum Branches” Surimono

2004 – Rebecca Zorach (PhD, University of Chicago), Pulled by night from its tomb: Animating Dead Antiquity in 16th Century France

2002 – Laura Hollengreen (PhD, University of California, Berkeley), From Calm Sobriety to Violent Sensuality: Changes in French Old Testament Imagery of the 13th Century