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UCSB HAA Spring 2016 Newsletter

Dear All,

This has been a year of reflection and growth for the department.  It began with the arrival of the External Review Committee, the midpoint of a two-year process of assessment and evaluation that happens roughly every decade. It afforded both our faculty and our students an opportunity to take stock and consider both where we have been and where we hope to go in the future.

One result of this process is a realignment of sorts, in which the undergraduate program — meaning not just the curriculum but also the place of undergraduate majors and minors in the department community — is receiving a new focus. This is happening in small ways, such as putting the undergraduates front and center on the home page of our new website, and larger ones, including a series of initiatives to revamp and enhance the relevance of our undergraduate course offerings. With our new undergraduate Museum Studies Emphasis, we are for the first time offering a non-academic art-historical career track for undergraduates from a diverse range of backgrounds. The Murray Roman Curatorial Teaching Assistantship — in which an art history graduate student mentors each year’s cohort of Art, Design & Architecture Museum undergraduate interns — is also meant to help direct students toward future museum careers.

We are reaching out beyond our usual precinct by the lagoon in various ways. Through the Outreach TAship, in partnership with the AD&AM, one of our graduate students spends a year designing a curriculum and training undergraduates to teach art and architectural history in local K-12 schools. The goals are to enrich the education of regional students, encourage local high school students to apply to study history of art and architecture at UCSB, provide outreach opportunities to undergraduates and harnass the enthusiasm and energy of our graduate students for effective pedagogy. To help make the department more visible to the larger Santa Barbara community, we will inaugurate HAA Downtown in Fall quarter, with a screening by Anthony McCall of his landmark Line Describing a Cone at the SOhO club on State Street. Another endeavor to make the department more visible is the newly redesigned department website, which has been a great success, providing much easier access to the department's personnel, course offerings and opportunities for all users. Be sure to check it out and let us know what you think.

The extensive set of entries in the Alumni News below provides ample and gratifying evidence that the department's outreach to our alumni has been successful. Keep those updates coming in! In future newsletters, we hope to include more news from our many successful undergraduate alums as well.

This year’s graduate symposium on Radical Ephemeralities was a great success, both in terms of the professionalism with which it was planned and executed — well done, Suzanne van de Meerendonk and Ashleigh Lynch! — and the quality and diversity of the talks.  Prof. Homay King, Bryn Mawr, gave a fascinating keynote lecture in the form of a work-in-progress talk (or vice versa), “Notes on Some Forms of Repetition,” the experimental nature of which perfectly fit this year’s introspective mood.

We ended the year with our departmental awards ceremony, celebrating the many achievements of both our undergraduates and graduate students. This year we had three insightful and inspiring presentations, from Prof. Elizabeth Guffey (SUNY Purchase; B.A., UCSB,1985), Prof. Catha Paquette (Cal State Long Beach; Ph.D., UCSB, 2002) and Dean John Majewski. Collectively, and without any prior coordination, the three speakers spoke compellingly and movingly to the unexpected twists and turns that everyone encounters in the course of their lives and careers and to the need to embrace these as we each move forward. It is not at all a bad lesson to learn at the end of this year.

All best,

Mark Meadow
Professor and Chair

This spring the HAA graduate students held their fourth Alumni Panel, and invited speakers from academic, museum, and commercial backgrounds to discuss their careers and the job market. Lucia Ricciardelli (Ph.D. 2007), Associate Professor in Film Studies at Montana State University, and Heather Marx (M.A. 1994) of Heather Marx Art Advisory travelled to the UCSB campus, while Cody Hartley, Curatorial Director of the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, joined via Skype. The graduate students would like to thank Lucia, Heather and Cody for sharing their experiences and providing valuable insights into the professional application of their graduate degrees from UCSB. The event was co-sponsored by Graduate Division and the Department of the History of Art and Architecture.

Right: Heather Marx and Lucia Ricciardelli, with event organizers Mallory Baskett (left) and Erin Travers (right)

Alumni panel
Sarah Bane

Sarah Bane attended The Association of Print Scholar's inaugural "Printmaking Workshop for Early Career Scholars," in Providence, Rhode Island in May. An intensive, two-day, practical introduction to printmaking techniques, the workshop focused on intaglio processes and lithography. Beginning at Overpass Projects with contemporary printmakers Julia Samuels and Henry Brown, Sarah experimented with a range of intaglio processes and witnessed a special presentation on engraving by Andrew Raftery, Professor of Printmaking at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). Led by Brian Shure, Assistant Professor and Graduate Program Director in Printmaking at RISD and a former master printer at Crown Point Press, the second day was devoted entirely to lithography. Working directly with the physical processes that are central to her research, the workshop was extremely influential for Sarah's understanding of printmaking. 

Left: Sarah pulling her first lithograph under the guidance of Brian Shure, Assistant Professor and Graduate Program Director in Printmaking at RISD and a former master printer at Crown Point Press (Courtesy The Association of Print Scholars)

Awards Ceremony and Graduation Reception

John Majewski, Michael Douglas Dean of Humanities and Fine Arts, addressed the students at the departmental Awards Ceremony on June 11. Prof. Mark Meadow presented the undergraduate awards and Prof. Ann Jensen Adams the graduate awards.  On behalf of the Art, Design and Architecture Museum, graduate student and museum intern coordinator Ashleigh Lynch announced the Museum Internship awards. The alumni speakers were Dr. Catha Paquette (Ph.D. 2002), Professor at the School of Art at California State University, Long Beach, and Dr. Elizabeth Guffey (B.A. 1985), Professor of Art and Design History at State University of New York, Purchase College, and Editor-in-Chief of “Design & Culture.”

    Graduate Awards:
  • Margaret Mallory Award for Best PhD Dissertation: Sophia Rochmes
  • Graduate Committee Award: Mallorie Chase and Margaret Mansfield
  • Chairperson’s Award: Erin Travers
    Undergraduate Awards:
  • Writing and Research Promise Award: Megan Asrani
  • Recognition for Participating in the Honor’s Program]: Megan Asrani, Edward Hadeler, David Samuels
  • Award for Best Honors Thesis: David Samuels
  • Howard C. Fenton Fellowship Award: Megan Dixon
  • Academic Excellence Award: Edward Hadeler
  • Honorable Mention for Academic Excellence: Megan Asrani, Brittany Caruso, Rachel Williams
  • Art Design & Architecture Museum Service Award: Brittany Caruso, Veronica Muñoz, Diana Torres Luevanos, Rachel Williams

Priscilla Leung  Megan Dixon  Dr. Elizabeth Guffey  Dr. Catha Paquette
From left to right: Priscilla Leung (far left) and her family; Prof. Meadow and Megan Dixon; Guest speaker Dr. Elizabeth Guffey; Guest speaker Dr. Cathy Paquette

Margaret Mansfield and Mallorie Chase Prof. Meadow, Margaret Mansfield, Prof. Adams, and Mallorie Chase. Maggie Bell, Rachel Williams, Ashleigh Lynch, Diana Torres Luevanos Maggie Bell, Rachel Williams, Ashleigh Lynch, and Diana Torres Luevanos

Eddie Hadeler Eddie Hadeler, Prof. Meadow, and Mr. and Mrs. Hadeler
graduation photos

The 41st Annual AHGSA Symposium took place this year on April 22nd on the topic of Radical Ephemeralities. The event, co-organized by PhD candidates Ashleigh Lynch and Suzanne van de Meerendonk, was a great success. Prof. Homay King of Bryn Mawr College delivered an animated keynote speech exploring how repetition operates across a variety of media including film and computer game worlds, which was followed by a moderated discussion led by HAA Prof. Jenni Sorkin. The graduate student presentations ranged in disciplinary scope this year, with papers investigating themes on the relationship between artistic practice and material recuperation as well as the body as a site of transformation and contestation. HAA graduate student J.V. Decemvirale presented on an aspect of his dissertation research which focuses on a guard-led Black arts festival that took place at LACMA in 1968, while HAA graduate students Ginny Reynolds, Maggie Mansfield, and Sarah Bane moderated the day’s three panels.

Prof. Jenni Sorkin published her first book in June, Live Form: Women, Ceramics and Community (University of Chicago Press), which shines new light on the relation of ceramics to the artistic avant-garde by looking at the central role of women in the field: potters who popularized ceramics as they worked with or taught male counterparts like John Cage, Peter Voulkos, and Ken Price. Sorkin focuses on three Americans who promoted ceramics as an advanced artistic medium: Marguerite Wildenhain, a Bauhaus-trained potter and writer; Mary Caroline (M. C.) Richards, who renounced formalism at Black Mountain College to pursue new performative methods; and Susan Peterson, best known for her live throwing demonstrations on public television. Together, these women pioneered a hands-on teaching style and led educational and therapeutic activities for war veterans, students, the elderly, and many others. Far from being an isolated field, ceramics offered a sense of community and social engagement, which, Sorkin argues, crucially set the stage for later participatory forms of art and feminist collectivism.

Live Form cover

Prof. Bruce Robertson has been a visiting scholar at the Smithsonian American Art Museum all spring, and recently presented some of his research there: William Sidney Mount's The Power of Music and the Performance of Race.

In March, Prof. Robertson co-organized a conference at the China Academy of Art, in Hangzhou, China, with Prof. Zhang Jian, Complimentary Modernisms: Chinese and American Art. Twenty scholars, half Chinese and half American, presented papers on aspects of Chinese and American modernism, including JV Decemvirale. He also lectured on the relationship between contemporary art and museums at Tsinghua University and Central Academy of Art in Beijing. He started the trip by going to Dunhuang with Prof. Peter Sturman to see the caves at Mugao and Yulin, which are currently the subject of an exhibition at the Getty.

This spring, Prof. Robert Williams completed work on three articles: “Repetition, Variation, and the Idea of Art in Renaissance Italy,” to appear in the online journal California Italian Studies; “Young Michelangelo and the Question of the Rothschild Bronzes,” for the anthology A Michelangelo Discovery: The Rothschild Bronzes (V. Avery ed., Cambridge University Press); and a review of Andrea del Sarto: The Renaissance Workshop in Action (exhibition at the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Frick Collection, catalogue by J. Brooks, et al.), which will appear in caa reviews this summer. His essay “Bildwissenschaft, Kunstwissenschaft, and Vasari” is about to appear in Vasari als Paradigma, F. Jonietz and A. Nova. eds., published by the Kunsthistorisches Institut, Florence.

Prof. Williams was named Robert Janson-LaPalme Visiting Professor by the Department of Art & Archaeology, Princeton University, and lectured there on the subject of “Actuality, Potentiality, and Renaissance Classicism,” in March. He was named a Fellow of the Kolleg-Forschungsgruppe “Bildevidenz” of the Freie-Universität, Berlin, for the period 2016-9.

Prof. Williams also co-chaired, with A.M. Kim, the session “Rethinking the Rhetoric and Force of Images” at the annual meeting of the College Art Association, Washington DC in February, and a session with the same title at the Renaissance Society of America in Boston in April.

Graduate Student News

JV Decemvirale presented his paper "Because Night Time Is the Right Time: Tactics, Popular Resistance and the Formation of the Black Arts Council," at the Complimentary Modernisms: Chinese and American Art conference in Hangzhou, China in March.

Hannah Kagan-Moore presented her paper "Mother of God or Kewpie Doll? Chartres Cathedral, the Madonna du Pilier, and the Politics of Restoration," at the UCSB Borderlands Conference and at the UCSB Medieval Studies conference, "Gender and Religious Practice in the Middle Ages." 

Matthew Limb was awarded a Windgate Museum Internship Grant through the Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art to work on their ceramics collection in summer, 2016.

Suzanne van de Meerendonk received the Albert and Elaine Borchard European Studies Fellowship for 2016-17 for her dissertation research project.

Anna Myjak-Pycia was invited to Cornell University in March to give a lecture titled "Another Modernism: Home Economics and the Conception of Domestic Space in the United States, 1900-1960," based on her dissertation research. She also received the UCSB Graduate Humanities Research Fellowship for academic year 2016-17.

Lilit Sadoyan co-curated the exhibition Sub Rosa: Behind the Scenes at the Museum, as a Curatorial Fellow at the Art, Design & Architecture Museum. The exhibit explores museum issues customarily unseen by the public, such as collections stewardship, conservation, research, connoisseurship, and exhibition design. The exhibition will be open June 24–August 14, 2016

Yun-Chen Lu was accepted into the Mellon Chinese Object Study Workshop on Early Chinese Paintings that will be held at the MFA in Boston in July. She will also be participating in a collaborative workshop on reading early Chinese texts on calligraphy that Professor Peter Sturman is hosting at UCSB in early September, sponsored by the ACLS.

Marguerite Keane (Ph.D. 2002) Assistant Professor, Art History Department, Drew University, has just published the book Material Culture and Queenship in 14th-century France: The Testament of Blanche of Navarre (1331-1398) (Brill, 2016).
Keane book
Catha Paquette's (Ph.D. 2002) book At the Crossroads: Diego Rivera and His Patrons at MoMA, Rockefeller Center, and the Palace of Fine Arts (University of Texas Press, January 2017) can be pre-ordered through Amazon or UT Press.
Paquette book
Jane Dini (Ph.D. 1998) edited and wrote three essays for the catalog accompanying the exhibition Dance: American Art, 1830-1960, which she curated at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Yale University Press, 2016).
Dini catalogue

Austen Barron Bailly (Ph.D. 2009) is the George Putnam Curator of American Art at the Peabody Essex Museum. Her exhibition American Epics: Thomas Hart Benton and Hollywood is on the final stop of its tour at the Milwaukee Art Museum. Her next exhibition, American Impressionist: Childe Hassam and the Isles of Shoals, opens in July. The curators teamed up with marine scientists and geologists to analyze and interpret the paintings of this famous American Impressionist and map Hassam's painting sites to the island's terrain.

Amy Buono (Ph.D. 2007), Visiting Researcher at the Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro. in Brazil, has published 3 articles this year:  “Signs of the Times:  Representing the Tupinambá and the Brazilwood Trade in Sixteenth-Century Rouen,” in Cultural Exchanges between Brazil and France, Book Series in Comparative Cultural Studies, Eds. Regina R. Félix and Scott D. Juall, West Lafayette: Purdue University Press, 2016, 19-34. (coming out next month); “’Their Treasures are the Feathers of Birds’: Tupinambá Featherwork and the Image of America,” in Images take Flight: Feather Art in Mexico and Europe (1400-1700). Eds. Alessandra Russo, Gerhard Wolf, and Diana Fane, 179-189. München: Hirmer Verlag, 2015, 179-189; and  “Historicity, achronicity, and the materiality of cultures in colonial Brazil,” Getty Research Journal, no. 7 (2015), Eds. Thomas W. Gaehtgens and Aleca Le Blanc, 19-34.

John R. Decker (Ph.D. 2004), Associate Professor in the Art History Department, Georgia State University, published the article "More Strength for Contemplation: Spiritual Play in the Amsterdam Holy Kinship" in JHNA 8:1 (Winter 2016): 1-22.

Jane Dini (Ph.D. 1998), Associate Curator in the American Wing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, curated the exhibition Dance: American Art, 1830-1960  a multimedia exhibition with over 100 artworks and videos celebrating and explaining the importance of dance in American culture   It opened at the Detroit Institute of Arts this spring and will travel to the Denver Art Museum in July, and the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in October. Her current exhibition, Printing a Child’s World, opened at the Met in May, and demonstrates the exchange between paintings and prints in late-nineteenth-century America.

Cody Hartley (Ph.D. 2005), Director of Curatorial Affairs at the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, recently completed essays for two forthcoming exhibition catalogs. The Tate Modern will open a major O’Keeffe retrospective in July (, which will eventually travel to Vienna and Toronto.  The second catalogue is for an exhibition co-organized with three Australian partners, bringing together the work of O’Keeffe and the two leading Australian Modernists, Grace Cossington Smith and Margaret Preston. In May, Cody presented on a panel discussing curator and patron relationships for the Association of Art Museum Curators annual conference. The O’Keeffe Museum also recently announced their latest acquisition and first major painting purchase, The Barns, Lake George,1926.

Barbara Kaminska (Ph.D. 2014) has accepted a tenure-track position as Assistant Professor of Art History at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, beginning August 2016. She has also published an article,  ""That there be no schisms among you:” Saint Paul as a Figure of Confessional Reconciliation in a Series of Paintings by Martin de Vos.” Journal of Early Modern Christianity vol. 3, issue 1 (April 2016): 99–129. 

Caroline Older (Ph.D. 2007) is the Executive Director of the Chicago Artists Coalition, which supports emerging and mid-career artists through residency programs, exhibitions, year-round professional development opportunities, as well as the online platform Chicago Artist Resource (CAR). 

Catha Paquette (Ph.D. 2002), Professor at the School of Art, California State University, Long Beach, has published the following essay: “Dreams and Monsters: Rubén Ortiz-Torres, Public Art and Critical Discourse,” Public Art Dialogue (Special Issue: The Cinematic Turn), Volume 5, Number 2 (Fall 2015), 203–230. Her book At the Crossroads: Diego Rivera and His Patrons at MoMA, Rockefeller Center, and the Palace of Fine Arts (University of Texas Press, January 2017) can be pre-ordered through Amazon or UT Press.

Mira Rai Watts (Ph.D. 2014) has been hired as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Art at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC. 

Bret Rothstein (Ph.D. 1998), Associate Professor in the Department of Art History, Indiana University, Bloomington, co-authored (with Karen M. Inouye) an article, “Visual Games and the Unseeing of Race in the Late Nineteenth Century,” American Quarterly 68:2 (June 2016), 287-313, which discusses the material and visual culture of popular ludic racism in the later nineteenth-century United States.

Veronica Roberts (M.A. 2005) is a curator of modern and contemporary art at the Blanton Museum of Art at the University of Texas, Austin (which also serves the city of Austin). Her show Converging Lines: Eva Hesse and Sol LeWitt is on the final stop of its tour at the Cleveland Museum of Art.

Holly Unruh (Ph.D. 2003) is the Associate Director of the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Center at CSU Monterey Bay, and currently holds a 2 year appointment through the CSU Chancellor's office as a Faculty-Fellow for Undergraduate Research. She also has a book contract with Routlege, A Practical Guide to Funding Your Research: Humanities, Social Sciences and the Arts with her former UCSB colleague Dr. Barbara L. E. Walker. She has been presenting on best practices in undergraduate research at national conferences such as the Council on Undergraduate Research, the Association of American Colleges & Universities, and the Alliance of Hispanic Serving Institution Educators.

Dear Alumni: please send your news of appointments, awards and other achievements to meadow at and spafford at