Reader in History of Art
Reviewer, The American Academy in Berlin24 Nov 2015 → …
Trustee and Executive Committee Member, Association of Art Historians29 Jun 2012 → 9 Apr 2015
Member of Academic Advisory Board, Royal West of England Academy22 Mar 2012 → …
Office: 2.31, 9 Woodland Road
Phone: +44 (0)117 954 6043
I am an art historian with particular research interests in sexuality, race, gender, women artists, photography, modernism and contemporary art. Outside the University I also regularly collaborate on research and teaching opportunities with museums and galleries.
I am research lead for the Transnational Modernisms Research Cluster, a Faculty wide research group that regularly hosts conferences, workshops, events and seminars on a variety of related topics, including our most recent international conference Framing the Critical Decade: After the Black Arts Movement, generously supported by BIRTHA and the Alumni Foundation. I am also General Series Editor for the cluster’s associated Peter Lang book series Transnational Cultures. In spring 2015 I was a visiting fellow at the Pratt Institute, New York.
From July 2017 I will be the Editor of Art History, a world-leading journal published by Wiley Blackwell for the Association of Art Historians.
I am currently one of the curators of a major new exhibition, Expressionism: Rebirth and Renewal,opening at the Royal Academy of Arts in London in spring 2019, before touring internationally. This will be the first large-scale exhibition of German and Austrian Expressionism in the UK for over 30 years and an unparalleled opportunity to set new research agendas in the field.
Recent impact from my research on German Expressionism is evidenced by the award of a contract with Leicestershire City Council and Museums to co-produce a series of expert reports on the German Expressionist holdings of New Walk Museum and Art Gallery. You can watch a film about that research here.
I am a member of the Academic Advisory Board of the Royal West of England Academy and a reviewer for the American Academy in Berlin. I have held research grants from the Leverhulme Trust, the British Academy and most recently a collaborative doctoral award from the AHRC for a doctoral student to conduct research in collaboration with the National Portrait Gallery, London
I am currently working on several new publications including two new monographs, New Women, New Vision: Icons of Modernity in Weimar Germany for Reaktion Books and Käthe Kollwitz Between Symbolism and Expressionism, as well as several edited collections including German Expressionism: Der Blaue Reiter and its Legacies (Manchester University Press), Framing the Critical Decade: After the Black Arts Movement and Weimar's Others: Art History and Visual Culture in Germany after 1918 (Special Issue of Art History, April 2018). I have also published numerous articles in the fields of Black, Asian and Diasporic art in Britain, German Expressionism and Weimar culture.
My most recently published, Leverhulme-funded monograph After Dada: Marta Hegemann and the Cologne Avant-Garde (Manchester University Press 2013) was recipient of a College Art Association of America Millard Meiss publication award. It offers an original analysis of avant-garde modernism in Germany after 1918 arguing, against the grain, that its success was dependent on both its regional centres and its forgotten networks of women artists, critics and patrons. My first monograph Representing Berlin: Sexuality and the City in Imperial and Weimar Germany (Ashgate 2003), sought to account for the gendered representational shift from topography to allegory in images of Berlin from Fischerdorf (fishing village) to wicked Metropolis. I investigated the processes by which women and femininity played a prominent role in depictions of the city and how and why the city became demonised as a gendered site of alienation and anxiety after the First World War.
My most recently co-edited collection (with Marsha Meskimmon) Women, the Arts and Globalization: Eccentric Experience (Manchester University Press, 2013) was the first anthology to specifically explore the relationships between transnational feminism and women's art practices across a range of contemporary media. The essays discuss the connections between aesthetics, gender and identity in a global world. They demonstrate that women in the arts are rarely positioned at the centre of the art market, and the movement of women globally (as travellers or migrants, empowered artists/scholars or exiled practitioners), rarely corresponds with the dominant models of global exchange.
I teach at all levels of the degree, from our first year unit Approaching The Object, to the supervision of PhD students. I am also Programme Director for the MA in History of Art. My teaching includes units on The Artist, Modern Women Artists, German Expressionism, Weimar Women: Representing Modernity and Curating Collections.
I am currently supervising doctoral work on Käthe Kollwitz; theatrical portraiture (with the NPG); Greek women sculptors after 1945 and the relationship between ekphrasis and performance art. I welcome proposals from students working on twentieth century German art and aspects of contemporary black and diasporic art in Britain, particularly relating to areas including: gender, sexuality and race in modern and contemporary visual art; transnationalism and globalization; German expressionism, Weimar culture and exile; modern women artists and photographers and black British art.
Please don't hesitate to get in touch if you would like to discuss your doctoral research plans.