UC Berkeley History of Art Department

People / Graduate Students

Current Students

    • William Coleman

    • Bio

       

      After a couple of years on fellowship in the Northeast, Will Coleman (2009) is back in Berkeley to teach two courses while completing his dissertation: "Something of an Architect: Thomas Cole and the Country House Ideal". He earned a bachelor's from Haverford College in 2007, a master's from the Courtauld Institute in 2008, both in history of art, and a master's in music from Oxford in 2009.

    • Alexandra Courtois de Vicose

    • Bio

      Alexandra Courtois (2009), a fourth-year Jacob K. Javits Fellow, is looking forward to the upcoming academic year after becoming ABD this past June. Heading up to teaching as a GSI for Darcy Grimaldo Grigsby in the Spring of 2014, she will be starting her dissertation research on Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec this fall, paying a preliminary visit to the Musée Toulouse-Lautrec in Albi, France where an invaluable collection of 2600 publications
(books, exhibition catalogues, sales catalogues and art reviews) on the artist are housed.      

    • Sarah Cowan

    • Bio

      Sarah Cowan studies modern and contemporary art with a focus on conceptual spatializations of political relationships. She entered the PhD program in the fall of 2012, and has focused seminar papers on diverse topics like work by Argentinian artist Amalia Pica, the YouTube series Art Thoughtz, and the Topography of Terror exhibition in Berlin. She enjoyed visiting Spiral Jetty with the graduate seminar Art & Labor, serving as a member of the Townsend Working Group in Contemporary Art and leading tours of the exhibition Silence, at the Berkeley Art Museum this year. This summer she learned Spanish at the Middlebury Language School in Vermont, as preparation for further engaging Latin American art. She is thrilled to be GSIing this year.

    • Matthew Culler

    • Bio

      Matthew Culler (2009) studies early modern art with a particular interest in Italian art and art theory.  He received a B.A. from Kenyon College and an M.A. from the University of North Carolina in 2007.

    • Karine Douplitzky

    • Bio

      Karine Douplitzky (2011) was born and raised in France and recently moved to the Bay Area. She has a non-typical profile: a Master's degree in Engineering and an M.A. in Film Studies, followed by many years as a documentary film director. One of her favorite subjects is the History of Paper: she wrote a book on the topic, as well as several articles on related themes such as the power of media. She then spent a year in Japan teaching French literature and cinema. Karine studies under Professor Elizabeth Honig. She is particularly interested in Dutch and Flemish art and hopes to continue research on the question of the Smile. She has eclectic interests, including photography, elaborating themed exhibits and restoring a 12th-century prieuré in France.

    • Thadeus Dowad

    • Bio

      Thadeus Dowad is a first-year PhD student focusing on the visual and material cultures of Germany, France, and the British Empire in the nineteenth century, with particular attention to the histories of science, psychology, and sexology. Working with Darcy Grimaldo Grigsby and Whitney Davis, he is excited to continue exploring his broad interests in the nineteenth century alongside topics in art theory, historiography, critical methods, philosophy, aesthetics, queer theory, and the history of collecting. Thadeus received his B.A. in the History of Art from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.A. from the Graduate Program in the History of Art at Williams College.

    • Susan Eberhard

    • Bio

      Susan Eberhard is a first-year PhD student in the history of American art. Her interests include geological landscapes in the Pacific and 19th century maritime trade with China. She worked in the American Art department of the Philadelphia Museum of Art before spending the past year in Honolulu. She is thrilled to start her studies of representations of land and sea in the beautiful Bay Area. She graduated from Swarthmore College with a B.A. in art history in 2009.

    • Jessica Flores

    • Bio

      Jessica “Jez” Flores will study contemporary art, specifically as it relates to third-wave feminism and gender studies. She earned her BFA from Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia and her MA in Art History from the University of Cincinnati. Immediately following her MA she began working in the curatorial department at the Cincinnati Art Museum and was appointed Associate Curator of Contemporary Art in 2008. In her free-time she practices yoga and plays bass guitar.

    • Carl Gellert

    • Bio

      Carl is spending 2013-14 on a Japan Foundation Fellowship in Nara, Japan. While there he will be conducting research for his dissertation at the Nara National Institute for Cultural Properties and Archaeological Institute of Kashihara. His dissertation examines the Fujinoki tomb, focusing on an examination of grave-goods and other artifacts from the site as a means of better understanding 5th-8th century mortuary traditions, and Japan’s early relationship with China and Korea.

    • Aglaya Glebova

    • Bio

      Aglaya K. Glebova (2007) is writing her dissertation on propaganda photographs and films of Soviet forced labor camps from the late 1920s and early 1930s.  Along with Michelle Wang, Aglaya was a Townsend Dissertation Fellow in 2012-2013. This summer, thanks to generous funding from the History of Art Department, she visited the sites of the earliest Gulags, including the Solovki islands and the White Sea-Baltic Canal, and conducted archival research in the Republic of Karelia. As a Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellow, Aglaya plans to file her dissertation in May 2014.

    • Diana Greenwold

    • Bio

      Diana Greenwold (2008) just completed her year as the Douglass Fellow at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This year, with the help of the Dean's Normative Time Fellowship, Diana will continue work on her dissertation, which focuses on immigrant craft workshops in American settlement houses in early-twentieth century New York and Boston. In 2015, Diana will present her research at the College Art Association, Stanford University, and the University of Chicago. When Diana is not writing, she enjoys biking and seeking out New York city's best Ramen.

    • Andrew Griebeler

    • Bio

      Andrew Griebeler (2010) studies medieval and Byzantine art with Diliana Angelova and Beate Fricke. Andrew graduated with a B.A. in art history and biology at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington. Andrew’s research interests include manuscripts, spolia, and medieval science and image theory.

    • Grace Harpster

    • Bio

      Grace Harpster (2011) is a PhD candidate studying early modern Italian art, with a particular interest in the religious art of Counter-Reformation Italy and its wider missionary network. Grace is currently beginning dissertation research on San Carlo Borromeo and his interactions with sacred images.

       

    • Samantha Henneberry

    • Bio

      This past year, Samantha Henneberry (2008) completed museum study and fieldwork in Greece for her dissertation on Lakonian warrior-hoplite iconography and the role of diverse craft traditions in shaping warrior identity and social memory. While the Jacob Hirsch Fellow at the American School in Athens, she researched in various collections, including the National Archaeological and Acropolis Museums in Athens, Sparta Archaeological Museum, and Altes Museum in Berlin, and traveled throughout the archaic landscapes of the southern Peloponnese (by tiny Peugeot!). This year, with funding from the Frank E. Ratliff Fellowship, Sam will focus on research and writing in Berkeley.

    • Aaron Hyman

    • Bio

      Aaron Hyman is at work on a dissertation entitled Rubens in a New World: Prints, Authorship, and Transatlantic Intertextuality, which explores the transmission of printed compositions after the Flemish artist Peter Paul Rubens to Latin America in order to reassess modalities of authorship and notions of intertextuality in the early modern world. He will spend the 2014-15 academic year and summer in residence at the Rubenianum in Antwerp, Belgium with the support of a Belgian American Educational Foundation fellowship (Fulbright awarded, declined). In 2014 he will give papers at the College Art Association annual conference and at the conference “Fürst und Fürstin als Künstler” in Wolfenbüttel, an invited lecture at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, and will chair a panel at the meeting of the Latin American Studies Association. He is the co-author (with Barbara Mundy) of “Painting in New Spain, 1521-1820” (Oxford Bibliographies Online, 2013) and has a forthcoming article "Brushes, Burins and Flesh: The Graphic Art of Karel van Mander’s Haarlem Academy" (Corpus Fictum, Christiane Hille ed., Diogenes Verlag).

    • Kristen Kido

    • Bio

      Kristen Kido (2014) first became interested in Art History and in the ancient world at UCLA, and wrote her undergraduate dissertation on Egyptianising art in early imperial Rome. After graduating, she began teaching in the Education Department at the J. Paul Getty Villa in Malibu, where she shared her love of art and antiquity with museum-goers for four years. In that time, she became immersed in the field of Museum Education, and presented a lecture on teaching with antiquities at the National Arts Educators Association Convention in New York in 2012. Kristen continued her studies in London, and received her M.A. in Comparative Art and Archaeology from University College London in 2013. She was awarded the Institute of Archaeology's Master's Prize for her dissertation, "Founders' Tombs and Imperial Cosmologies: The Tomb of The First Emperor and The Mausoleum of Augustus in their Real Spaces." At Berkeley, she plans to continue researching the art of the ancient world from a comparative perspective, and is primarily interested the ways in which art has served as a vehicle of social and political change, and in how the visual packages associated with a mythologized past impact cultural identity and social memory. Her advisors are Whitney Davis and Christopher Hallett.

    • Mary Lewine

    • Bio

      Mary Lewine joins the department having completed her M.A. with the Group in Asian Studies at UC Berkeley. After receiving a B.A. from Vassar College, she taught in Taiwan for two years as a Princeton in Asia fellow, worked in her hometown of New York City, and studied at IUP in Beijing. Mary is interested in processes of establishing sacred authority and maintaining if not conjuring the presence of the Buddha in medieval East Asian contexts. Her M.A. thesis addressed the status of relics and sacred images for the Buddhist pilgrim monks Faxian and Xuanzang through an exploration of their travel records. Professors Berger and Levine, now her advisors, generously guided her through this project.

    • Josephine Lopez

    • Bio

      Josie Lopez (2009) is currently conducting research and writing her dissertation in New Mexico with the support of the SMU Eleanor Tufts Fellowship.  Her dissertation examines nineteenth-century political satire and caricature in the prints of Mexican lithographer Constantino Escalante. 

    • William Ma

    • Bio

      William H. Ma (2008) is writing a dissertation on the art and craft workshops at the French Jesuit Orphanage Tushanwan in Shanghai in the early twentieth century.   His main areas of interest include the artistic exchange between China and the West (Europe and America) during the late-imperial period, regionalism in Chinese art, and Chinese export art in Guangzhou (Canton). 

    • Daniel Marcus

    • Bio

      This past year, Daniel Marcus has been a visiting scholar in the History of Art Department at the University of Pennsylvania at the invitation of Professor Kaja Silverman. He is working on a dissertation titled The Banality of Speed: Automotive Modernity in Interwar France, which investigates artistic responses to the vulgarization of the automobile. Alongside his dissertation work, he has written regularly on contemporary art and politics, contributing a catalogue essay to the Boston ICA’s upcoming survey of artist Amy Sillman, a reply to October’s questionnaire on Occupy Wall Street (with Jaleh Mansoor and Daniel Spaulding), and numerous exhibition reviews to Artforum and Art in America. For the coming year, he has accepted a position as Teaching Fellow in the Histories of Art, Media, and Design at the Pasadena Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles.

    • Laure Marest-Caffey

    • Bio

       

      Laure Marest-Caffey (2010) is a Ph.D. candidate specializing in ancient Greek art with a particular interest in engraved gems. She is currently researching her dissertation "What's in a Face? Rethinking the Greek Portrait through Hellenistic Glyptic" with a Mellon Curatorial Internship at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
      Before being dazzled by these works of art in miniature, she studied History and Art History at the Sorbonne, Paris (B.A.), and at California State University, Northridge (M.A.), and worked as Curatorial Assistant in the Department of Antiquities at the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles. She has also served as Trench Supervisor and Manager of the Finds Department during the 2011 and 2013 seasons of the Butrint Archeological Research Project, Albania. When she is not looking at bling or dirt, Laure enjoys exploring the American West, cooking and tasting food from all over the world--with a special weakness for cheese, Frenchness oblige!
    • Micki McCoy

    • Bio

      Last year, Micki McCoy (2009) continued her dissertation research on the stars and the sky in tenth- to fourteenth-century Chinese and Inner Asian art. She spent the fall in Cambridge, MA, and returned to Berkeley in the spring to serve as GSI for Patricia Berger's "Art and Architecture of Early China" course. With support from the Fulbright Program and Social Sciences Research Council, Micki will spend the fall of 2013 in Beijing and move to Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu province, in early 2014. She will round off this research year abroad with trips to Western Europe and St. Petersburg.

    • Elizabeth McFadden

    • Bio

      Elizabeth McFadden is a Ph.D. student in the History of Art Department at the University of California, Berkeley, focusing on early modern fashion and dress. She is currently researching the iconographic tradition and cultural history of fur in sixteenth and seventeenth-century London, Amsterdam, and Venice. In May 2014 she will present a paper at the Rubenianum on the materiality of fur in the paintings of Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens at the symposium, "(Un)dressing Rubens. Fashion and Painting in 17th-century Antwerp". Her paper "Food, Alchemy, and Transformation in Jan Brueghel's The Allegory of Taste" will be published in Volume 30 of Rutgers Art Review. She earned her BA at Hood College and an MA from the Courtauld Institute of Art in London.

    • Cristin McKnight Sethi

    • Bio

      Cristin McKnight Sethi (2008) focuses on South Asian art of the early modern to contemporary periods. Her interests include photography, textiles, global histories of collecting and exhibiting South Asian objects, art made during the British Raj, and the politics and art historical predicament of craft. Cristin was awarded an M.A. in Art History from the University of Texas at Austin and a B.A. in Art and Visual Culture from Bates College. She has lived in India while researching kalamkari textiles as a Fulbright Fellow, and while studying Hindi as a FLAS Fellow. She is currently researching and writing her dissertation on phulkari embroidery from Punjab under the guidance of Professor Joanna Williams.

    • Kappy Mintie

    • Bio

      Kappy Mintie (2011) studies nineteenth-century American photography with a particular interest in the intersections between photographic practice and intellectual property law. Currently she is preparing for her Qualifying Exams and she will spend the spring semester of 2015 as a Mellon Curatorial Intern at the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth, TX.

    • Oliver O'Donnell

    • Bio

       

      Oliver O'Donnell is currently an Exchange Scholar in the Department of Art History and Archaeology at Columbia University.  While in residence in New York, he will be writing his dissertation, tentatively titled "Pragmatic Historians of Art", which investigates intersections between art historical methodology and Pragmatist philosophy. 

    • Stephanie Pearson

    • Bio

      Stephanie Pearson (2007) currently lives in Berlin with her husband and colleague Mont Allen. Her dissertation research continues with the support and library of the German Archaeological Institute, along with the resources of the many other archaeological institutions in the city — whose dizzying schedule of lectures and exhibitions ensure never a dull moment! From across the pond, Stephanie was also thrilled to receive the Outstanding GSI Award for teaching Late Antique Art (Spring 2012) with Diliana Angelova.

    • Kailani Polzak

    • Bio

      Kailani Polzak (2008) is a Ph.D. candidate working on British, French, and Russian voyages to the Pacific and the picturing of human difference in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. She spent the past year in New Zealand, France, and Germany with the support of the History of Art Department as well as fellowships from the Social Science Research Council and the Georges Lurcy foundation.  Kailani will finish her tenure as an International Dissertation Research Fellow with the SSRC this fall, dividing the semester between research sites in the United Kingdom and Australia. She is very excited to return to Berkeley in the spring to begin writing and resume teaching.

    • Laura Richard

    • Bio

      Laura's (2008) field is Modern and Contemporary Art with a Designated Emphasis in Film. This past spring she taught a course on installation art, and last summer her article, "Anthony McCall: The Long Shadow of Ambient Light" appeared in the Oxford Art Journal. She was the volume editor of State of Mind: New California circa 1970 (UC Press, 2011) and, since 2009, has been the co-coordinator of the Townsend Working Group in Contemporary Art at UC Berkeley, whose mission is to foster interdisciplinary and inter-institutional conversations. She is currently writing her dissertation on the early film and room works of Maria Nordman, a portion of which she presented at the UCSD Visual Arts Graduate Student Conference in March. When she is not in the library or with her three daughters, Laura enjoys trail running, cooking, and playing co-ed soccer.

    • Sasha Rossman

    • Bio

      Sasha grew up in Berkeley and Switzerland. He left the Bay Area in the late 90s to study art history and art practice on the East Coast and in Germany, where he worked in contemporary art for many years and also studied at Berlin's Freie and Humboldt Universities. He then returned to Berkeley to study art, architecture, film, philosophy, critical theory and literary theory across numerous departments- focusing on constructions of space, temporality and history across media.

    • Miriam Said

    • Bio

      Miriam Said (2011) earned her B.A. in art history from Syracuse University in 2009, and focuses on art of the ancient near east and the early Greek period. Her research interests include art of the first millennium with a focus on near eastern cultural cross-roads and interaction with the Eastern Mediterranean world; ritual and religion, and the representation and function of hybrid beings in art. She is also particularly interested in issues of cultural heritage and repatriation, which she hopes to explore in more depth in the coming years. Miriam most recently hails from New York where she spent the last two years working at both The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Museum of Modern Art.

    • Andrew Sears

    • Bio

      Andrew Sears (2012) is studying Western medieval art with Dr. Beate Fricke. In his first year of coursework he took up Latin. He also participated in the Stronach Travel Seminar on Tudor and Neo-Tudor houses, became fascinated by late medieval private house chapels, and hopes to work more on intersections of devotion and domesticity. This summer he spent learning German as a Kress Fellow at Middlebury College.

    • Emma Silverman

    • Bio

      Emma Silverman (2012) studies modern and contemporary American art. Her research concerns collaborative art practices, queer aesthetics, and the politics of folk and outsider art. This year Emma is writing a dissertation prospectus about the Watts Towers and studying for her qualifying exams. Emma earned her B.A. from Wesleyan University in 2006 and graduated with an M.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2012.

    • Jessica Stair

    • Bio

      Jessica is a Ph.D. candidate focusing on the art of Colonial Latin America with a designated emphasis in Renaissance and Early Modern Studies. She is co-advised by Todd Olson and Lisa Trever. Her dissertation examines the relationship between text and image in a corpus of seventeenth-century indigenous manuscripts from Central Mexico known as the Techialoyan Codices. She is particularly interested in the ways in which images played a crucial role in the formation of autochthonous history and identity at a time when alphabetic script had almost completely supplanted the picture in indigenous records. Jessica also serves as a co-organizer for the Townsend Center for the Humanities Working Group: Mobilities and Materialities in the Early Modern World. The group seeks to integrate through interdisciplinary discussion macro-economic studies of international networks and micro-historical engagements with materialities. 

       

       

    • Jessica Stevenson-Stewart

    • Bio

      Jessica is a PhD candidate specializing in early sixteenth-century Netherlandish art and cultural exchange. Supervised by Professors Elizabeth Honig, Todd Olson, and Darcy Grigsby, her dissertation, Rules of Engagement: Art, Commerce, and Diplomacy in Golden-Age Antwerp, studies the art collections of three foreign merchants in Antwerp and their proximity to specific knowledge communities. She has received fellowships from the Fulbright Commission, the Belgian American Educational Foundation, and the Kress Foundation to support her research abroad. Having flirted in her youth with the idea of going to film school, Jessica also considers herself to be a bit of a film buff. She has a penchant for post-Neo-realist Italian cinema, the French New Wave, New German Cinema, and just about anything directed by Bergman, Fellini, Resnais, and Fassbinder. Prospective students and other friends of the department should feel free to contact Jessica by e-mail.

    • Shivani Sud

    • Bio

      Shivani Sud (2013) is a second-year PhD student specializing in the art and visual culture of nineteenth-century colonial India. Broadly, her research interests include folk arts and crafts, design, architecture, urban spaces, Indian cinema, museum studies, and postcolonial criticism. Supported by the Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship, she spent the past summer studying Hindi at the American Institute of Indian Studies in Jaipur, India. She is looking forward to teaching as a GSI for her advisor Sugata Ray this year. Shivani earned her B.A. in Art History from UCLA in 2012. Prior to her graduate studies, she worked as a Curatorial Assistant at the Santa Monica Museum of Art and the Armand Hammer Museum.

    • Elaine Yau

    • Bio

      Elaine Y. Yau (2007) is currently completing her dissertation entitled, "Acts of Conversion: Sister Gertrude Morgan and the Sensation of Black Folk Art, 1960-1983." Additional research interests include African American art criticism, sensory cultures of religion, and theories of the vernacular. She also serves as an editor for Cultural Analysis, an interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed journal dedicated to investigating popular and expressive culture.

    • Antonia Young

    • Bio

      Antonia Young (2009) specializes in ancient Roman art, with an emphasis on Roman painting. She received her B.A. in Classical Civilizations from Wellesley College and her M.A. in Classics from U.C. Berkeley. As an art historian originally trained as a Classical philologist, her work explores the intersection of ancient Roman art, architecture, and literature. For example, her dissertation, “‘Green Architecture’: The Interplay of Art and Nature in Roman Houses and Villas” (supervised by Professor Christopher Hallett), examines the convergence of art and nature in Roman wall painting and garden design in five domestic—and historically significant—sites in Italy. Her analysis tacks between close readings of these sites and contemporary Latin literature in order to situate what is at work and at stake in Roman gardens—artistically, culturally, and historically—at the level of both “text” and “context”. Her other research interests include Etruscan art and archaeology and the reception of Classical culture (especially the sites of Pompeii and Herculaneum).

    • Patricia Yu

    • Bio

      Patricia (2011) is gearing up for her third year by studying intensive French this summer in order to read the writings of French Jesuits serving in the court of the Qianlong Emperor. This past year she served as a GSI for the first time, teaching the Art and Architecture of Japan. She spent the first two weeks of 2013 in Taiwan attending Academia Sinica’s Winter Institute, where she observed folk religion practices. She also experienced her first snowfall in England while on the Tudor/Neo-Tudor Country Houses travel seminar. She is excited to lead tours of BAM’s fall exhibition, Beauty Revealed: Images of Women in Qing Dynasty Chinese Painting.