A world-class collection of American art, stunning architecture, and 120 acres of Ozark forest with five miles of trails. Admission to the museum is always free.
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The Tyson Scholars of American Art program supports interdisciplinary scholarship that seeks to expand the boundaries and traditional categories of investigation into American art from any time period. Since its inception in 2012 through a $5 million commitment from the Tyson family and Tyson Foods, Inc., the Tyson Scholars Program has supported the work of 67 scholars, attracting academic professionals in a variety of disciplines nationally and internationally.
Crystal Bridges and the Tyson Scholars Program invite PhD candidates (or equivalent), post-doctoral researchers, and senior scholars from any field who are researching American art to apply. Scholars may be focused on visual art, architecture, craft, visual and material culture, performance art, or new media. We also invite applications from scholars approaching US art transregionally and looking at the broader geographical context of the Americas, especially Latinx and Indigenous art.
Applications for the 2024-2025 academic year open September 27, 2023 and close December 11, 2023.
2024-2025 Application for Tyson Scholars
Frequently Asked Questions
Learn about and apply for the
Tyson Think Tank
Fellowships are residential and support full-time writing and research for terms that range from six weeks to nine months. While in residence, Tyson Scholars have access to the art and library collections of Crystal Bridges as well as the library and archives at the University of Arkansas in nearby Fayetteville. Stipends vary depending on the duration of residency; position as senior scholar, post-doctoral scholar, or PhD candidate; and range from $34,000 to $17,000 per semester, plus provided housing. The residency includes $1,500 for relocation expenses and additional research funds upon application. Scholars are provided workspace in the curatorial wing of the Crystal Bridges Library. The workspace is an enclosed area shared with other Tyson Scholars. Housing is provided in a fully furnished, shared four-bedroom, four-bathroom house within walking distance of the museum. Each scholar will have their own bedroom and ensuite bathroom with shared living room and kitchen.
During their residency, Tyson Scholars will intersect meaningfully with the dynamic arts ecosystem in Northwest Arkansas. In addition to access to Crystal Bridges and the Momentary (the museum’s satellite contemporary visual, culinary, and performing arts venue), scholars have access to resources, faculty, and graduate students at the University of Arkansas. In 2023, the University launched a master’s in art history in Arts of the Americas in partnership with Crystal Bridges, bringing new faculty to the region. The Crystal Bridges curatorial staff is also growing, with the addition of a curator of Indigenous art and the Windgate curator of craft. Crystal Bridges is nestled into an Ozark ravine on 120 acres of land. Art, architecture, and nature imbue the setting and make this location unique.
The Tyson Scholars program provides a close-knit community and ideal environment to accomplish writing. The Crystal Bridges’ collection and library, in combination with the region’s resources, made this fellowship program one of the most productive and beneficial that I participated in while completing my dissertation. Northwest Arkansas is a growing community with great potential to contribute to a robust dialogue on American art.
–Matthew Limb, PhD, 2022-2023 Tyson Scholar
In the spirit of furthering the public impacts of academic research, applicants will have the opportunity to apply for a competitive supplemental programming grant up to $10,000 to pay for the program. With the assistance of Crystal Bridges and University staff, the recipient will realize the proposed program, hosted by Crystal Bridges, during or following the fellowship term. Scholars seeking to mobilize art historical research in new ways, or to connect their research to the community, can make a pitch to use these funds. Think creatively! Who are the speakers you would like to engage? Is this a public program, podcast, community initiative?
By applying for the fellowship, applicants will automatically be considered for the Tyson Prize in American Art. The prize includes a $15,000 cash award, a publication agreement with the University of Arkansas Press, significant support for image costs and image rights acquisition, and a manuscript review including two experts of the author’s choice organized by the University of Arkansas Art History program.
Crystal Bridges is dedicated to an equitable, inclusive, and diverse cohort of fellows. We seek applicants who bring a critical perspective and understanding of the experiences of groups historically underrepresented in American art, and welcome applications from qualified persons of color; who are Indigenous; with disabilities; who are LGBTQ+; first-generation college graduates; from low-income households; and who are veterans. Scholars with an interest in amplifying the impacts of their research by connecting to audiences beyond the academy are also invited to apply.
For more information about Crystal Bridges, please see our About Us page.
Ricardo Chavez is a fifth-year PhD candidate in the Art History and Education program at the University of Arizona. He received his bachelor’s degree from Sacramento State University and his master’s degree in Art History and Visual Culture from San Jose State University. Ricardo’s research focuses on the art of American social movements from the 1960s and their influence on the participatory and socially engaged art of the present. Furthermore, his research addresses the history and intersections of art, education, and activism in relation to the fields of art education and public/critical pedagogy. His work has previously been published in Rutgers Art Review, and his career goal is to teach art history in a full-time university faculty position.
Amy Crum is a PhD Candidate at the University of California, Los Angeles where she specializes in contemporary art of the Americas. Her dissertation examines several experimental mural projects in Los Angeles and Mexico by Chicanx artists beginning in the 1970s in dialogue with the emergence of practices like installation art, institutional critique, and social practice art. Her research has recently been supported by the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Archives of American Art, the Fowler Museum, and the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center. In addition to her academic pursuits, Crum is an alumna of the Independent Curators International Curatorial Intensive and she has been involved in numerous exhibitions at institutions like the New Orleans Museum of Art and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
Willa Granger is a historian of modern American built environments. Broadly, Granger’s research is concerned with histories of social welfare, and specifically with how the political economy of care takes on spatial and material form within healthcare facilities and their design. Her manuscript, Constructing Old Age: Race, Ethnicity, Religion and the Architecture of Homes for the Aged will offer the first book-length account of the architectural and social history of the American nursing home. Granger holds a Ph.D. in Architectural History from the University of Texas at Austin. She is an Assistant Professor at Florida Atlantic University within the School of Architecture.
Theresa Leininger-Miller is Professor of Art History, University of Cincinnati. Selected publications include her book, New Negro Artists in Paris: African American Painters and Sculptors in the City of Light, 1922-1934; chapters in The Routledge Companion to African American History; Women Artists of the Harlem Renaissance; Out of Context; and The Modern Woman Revisited; essays in Panorama and Source; and catalogue essays in Imprinted: Illustrating Race; Harlem Renaissance; Black Paris; and Picture Cincinnati in Song. She has curated eight exhibitions of illustrated sheet music. National awards include those from National Endowment for the Humanities; Georgia O’Keeffe Museum; Kress Foundation, Henry R. Luce Foundation; Smithsonian Institution; and Auburn University.
Melanie Woody Nguyen is a PhD candidate in art history at the University of Maryland, specializing in contemporary art and the environment. Her dissertation, “Embodied Ecologies: Performance Art and Environmentalism, 1970-1990,” re-narrates the history of U.S. environmental art, demonstrating how women and artists of color—often performing with their own bodies—offered an expansive and socially embedded notion of ecology absent from canonical histories. The dissertation mines three case studies—on Ana Mendieta, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, and Maren Hassinger—finding in the art radical potential for rethinking current approaches to climate change.
Nguyen has been awarded the University of Maryland’s Flagship Fellowship, a curatorial fellowship at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, and the University of Maryland’s Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award. She has delivered lectures at the Barnes Collection, Bryn Mawr College, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, and the College Art Association, among other venues.
Sehyun Oh is a PhD candidate in the Department of Art History & Archaeology at Columbia University. Her research centers on modern and contemporary art within a global context, with a particular focus on photography and film. Sehyun’s dissertation examines the art of first-generation Japanese Americans in the early twentieth century through the interdisciplinary lens of diaspora and ecology. Her research interests also extend to broader topics such as migration, the natural environment, and everyday life in art history.
Florencia San Martín
Florencia San Martín is Assistant Professor of Art History at Lehigh University, where she teaches and writes about contemporary art in the Americas, decolonial methodologies, and theories on gender, photography, politics, and globalization in the neoliberal present. Her publications include The Routledge Companion to Decolonizing Art History, co-edited with Tatiana Flores and Charlene Villaseñor Black (Routledge, 2023); and the co-edited volume Dismantling the Nation State: Notes on Contemporary Art and Culture in Chile (Amherst College Press, 2023). Her first book project reframes the art of Alfredo Jaar from a decolonial perspective and has been supported by institutions including the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Rutgers University, and the Chilean National Commission for Scientific and Technological Research.
Tyson Think Tank, short term fellow
Lauren M. Caskey is a fourth-year PhD Candidate studying nineteenth and twentieth-century art history—particularly French and American art. Her research concerns issues of blackness, gender, and intersectionality. Prior to pursuing her PhD, Lauren worked as curatorial assistant and Print Room manager at the Saint Louis Art Museum. Her dissertation focuses on black female artists of the early-twentieth century and the cultural tensions they navigated throughout their artistic careers.
Sarah Louise Cowan is an assistant professor of art history at DePauw University. She researches modern and contemporary art of the Americas with a focus on the African diaspora and feminist art. Her forthcoming book, Howardena Pindell: Reclaiming Abstraction (Yale University Press, fall 2022), offers the first scholarly monograph on artist Howardena Pindell and develops the concept of Black feminist modernisms. An article she wrote about Pindell’s cut and sewn paintings of the 1970s appeared in the winter 2020 issue of Art Journal. At Crystal Bridges, she will develop an article about Beverly Buchanan’s 1981 environmental sculpture Marsh Ruins.
Grace Kuipers is a PhD candidate at the University of California, Berkeley, where she studies 20th century art. Her dissertation, entitled Mineral Modernism: The Mexican Subsoil and the Remapping of American Form in the 1930s theorizes an aesthetics of extraction in the transnational dialogue between U.S. and Mexican art in the 1930s. Beyond this dissertation, she has worked on diverse projects surrounding institutional histories of modernism, the labor of nude modeling, and the lives of commissioned portraiture, with geographical focuses that span Europe, the United States, and Latin America.
Matthew Limb is an emerging scholar of twentieth and twenty-first century American craft and design from the University of California, Santa Barbara. His dissertation, “Inherit the Earth: Ceramics, Land Use, and Settler Colonialism in the American West, 1923-1994” is an ecocritical view of ceramic artists’ engagement with the desert landscapes of California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. He is a past recipient of the Douglass Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the American Council of Learned Societies/Henry Luce Foundation Dissertation Fellowship in American Art, the Center for Craft Research Grant, and a Decorative Arts Trust Grant.
Sarah Kelly Oehler
Tyson Think Tank, short term fellow
Sarah Kelly Oehler is the Field-McCormick Chair and Curator, Arts of the Americas, at the Art Institute of Chicago. Her current project is Georgia O’Keeffe’s New Yorks (2024), which will explore the artist’s urban subjects within the broader context of her work of the 1920s. In 2018, Oehler curated the critically acclaimed Charles White: A Retrospective, the first major retrospective of this influential African American artist in several decades. She has contributed to numerous other exhibitions and publications in her twenty years at the museum. She received her PhD in American art from Columbia University and her BA in history from Yale University.
“Appalachian Regionalism: Reimaging Modernism on the Periphery of American Art”
Ali Printz is a PhD candidate and practicing artist who studies modern and contemporary Appalachian Art at the Tyler School of Art and Architecture at Temple University. Her dissertation incorporates elements of folk and self-taught art, craft, and fine art, as well as knowledge of ecocriticism and critical race theory to establish a narrative for the inclusion of Appalachian art production in the history of American Art. Ali’s research has been supported by the Smithsonian American Art Museum, The Center for Curatorial Leadership, and The Decorative Arts Trust. Her recent publications include Panorama Journal for the Association of Historians of American Art and Queering Appalachia’s Visual History: A Collection of Queer Appalachian Photographers, published by the University of Kentucky Press in Fall 2023.
Tyson Think Tank, short term fellow
David Sledge is a PhD Candidate at Columbia University, completing his dissertation Contested Modernism: Black Artists and the Spaces of American Modern Art, 1925-1950. David finished his undergraduate studies at Indiana University and an M.A. at Williams College. He has worked in curatorial roles at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Indianapolis Museum of Art, and Williams College Museum of Art as well as publishing in venues such as Art in America and caa.reviews.
Abigail Susik is Associate Professor of Art History at Willamette University and the author of Surrealist Sabotage and the War on Work (Manchester University Press, 2021). She is co-editor of the volumes Surrealism and Film After 1945: Absolutely Modern Mysteries (Manchester University Press, 2021) and Radical Dreams: Surrealism, Counterculture, Resistance (Penn State University Press, 2022). Her work has recently appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Los Angeles Review of Books, and she is a founding board member of the International Society for the Study of Surrealism.
Carrie Rebora Barratt
Distinguished Scholar, Tyson Think Tank
During her curatorial career at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Carrie Rebora Barratt created major exhibitions on John Singleton Copley, Gilbert Stuart, Thomas Sully, and many others, each time advancing scholarship by rethinking. She rose to Deputy Director, immersing herself in the vital importance of museums to human wellness. For the past two years, she was CEO and President of the New York Botanical Garden, the first woman to hold the position in its 127-year history, and created a long-range art and nature exhibition plan with vital educational programs and new digital content. While leadership expanded her purview, it never took her far from American art. She firmly believes that the stories told and untold in our nation’s art are deserving of exploration in open dialogue and with abundant curiosity.
Tyson Think Tank, short term fellow
Wendy Castenell is the Assistant Professor of African American Art History at The University of Alabama. Her first book, Creole Identity in the Art of the American South: Louisiana from the Colonial Era to Reconstruction will be published by Routledge/Taylor & Francis in the spring of 2022. Dr. Castenell’s research examines representations of race and ethnicity in American visual culture of the long nineteenth century in order to unpack the ways that racist ideologies were widely circulated and naturalized. Additionally, her work emphasizes BIPOC’s agency in actively fighting racist stereotypes and policies as evidenced in the visual culture of the period.
“Beyond-Human Collaboration and Resilience in Modern Native American Art, 1930-1980”
Zoë Colón is a PhD candidate who studies modern and contemporary Native North American art history at the University of Delaware. Her dissertation, “Beyond-Human Collaboration: Charting Human-Animal Resilience in Modern Native American Art,” will use the lens of Indigenous ecological knowledge and colonial environmental politics to understand Native artworks that interpret human-animal relationships. Zoë’s research has been supported by several institutions, including the Terra Foundation for American Art, the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, and the Center for Material Culture Studies. Her article, “Material Absence, Relational Presence: Courtney Leonard’s Breach Series and Whales as Medium,” will appear in the spring 2022 issue of American Art.
Erika Doss, Senior Scholar
“Troubling Memorials: American Reckoning with the Stuff of History”
Erika Doss is an art historian whose multiple books include Benton, Pollock, and the Politics of Modernism: From Regionalism to Abstract Expressionism (1991), Spirit Poles and Flying Pigs: Public Art and Cultural Democracy (1995), Elvis Culture: Fans, Faith, and Image (1999), Looking at Life Magazine (editor, 2001), Memorial Mania: Public Feeling in America (2010), American Art of the 20th-21st Centuries (2017), and Spiritual Moderns: Twentieth-Century American Artists and Religion (forthcoming). The recipient of several Fulbright awards, Doss has held fellowships at the Stanford Humanities Center, the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum Research Center, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum. As a Tyson Scholar of American Art for 2021-22, her research project is titled “Troubling Memorials: American Reckoning with the Stuff of History.”
“Total Integration: Design, Business, and Society in the United States, 1935—1985”
Robert Gordon-Fogelson is a PhD candidate in the Department of Art History at the University of Southern California. His dissertation examines how the concept of “integration,” understood as a visual, economic, and social ideal, shaped American design during the mid-twentieth century. His research has been supported by USC’s Visual Studies Research Institute, the Rochester Institute of Technology, the Hagley Center for the History of Business, Technology, and Society, the University of Chicago Library, and the Decorative Arts Trust. He holds an AB in Art History from Brown University and an MA in Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture from the Bard Graduate Center.
Tyson Think Tank, short term fellow
Margarita Karasoulas joined the Brooklyn Museum in October 2017 as Assistant Curator of American Art. Previously, she curated The Puzzling World of John Sloan (2015) at the Delaware Art Museum and Electric Paris (2016) at the Bruce Museum. Her most recent projects at the Brooklyn Museum include William Trost Richards: Experiments in Watercolor (2018) and Rob Wynne: FLOAT (2018). Karasoulas holds a BA in history and art history from Lafayette College, an MA in art history from Southern Methodist University, and a PhD in art history from the University of Delaware. Her dissertation, “Mapping Immigrant New York: Race and Place in Ashcan Visual Culture,” was supported by the Smithsonian American Art Museum and Luce Foundation/American Council of Learned Societies, and nominated for the University of Delaware’s Wilbur Owen Sypherd Prize for Outstanding Dissertation in the Humanities. Karasoulas specializes in nineteenth- and early twentieth-century American art, with a particular focus on early American modernism, issues of race and representation, and the history of photography. As a Tyson Think Tank Fellow, she will research William Williams’s Deborah Hall (1766) in the Brooklyn Museum collection.
Tyson Think Tank, short term fellow
Alexandra Letvin is the Assistant Curator of European and American Art at the Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin College, where she oversees a collection of approximately 5,500 paintings, sculptures, and works on paper before 1900. Her recent and upcoming exhibitions include How can Museum Labels be Antiracist?, Mobility and Exchange, 1600-1800, and DIS/POSSESSION, co-curated with Dr. Hannah Wirta Kinney. As a Tyson Think Tank Fellow, she will research and consider interpretive strategies for Frederick E. Cohen’s Bentley Simons Runyan Family (c. 1857), a portrait of an Ohio settler colonial family, their house, and their land in the Allen’s collection.
“Printmaking in Action: The International Art Program’s Graphic Arts Workshop at the 1970 Venice Biennale and Beyond”
Jennifer Noonan earned a PhD at the Pennsylvania State University and is currently the Alvin R. Calman Professor of Art History at Caldwell University in New Jersey. Dr. Noonan specializes in art of the twentieth century, with a particular focus on the history of prints and international exhibitions. Her research has appeared in Print Quarterlyand has been supported by the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation and by a Terra Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Her current book project, under contract with Routledge, provides the first written account of the International Art Program’s Graphic Arts Workshop, considering its activities as one element of the soft diplomacy that advanced US interests in the increasingly complex and shifting geopolitical landscape of the Cold War.
“Designing a Useable Future During the Indian New Deal, 1935-1943”
Julia Silverman is a PhD candidate in the History of Art and Architecture at Harvard University, where her research examines how craft and design have naturalized and resisted American colonial ideologies during the 19th and 20th centuries. With interests ranging from alternative theorizations of abstraction to whaling to the visual history of natural and social sciences, she is currently working with the Hopi Tribe of Northern Arizona on a project that explores the intersecting–and enduring–histories of design practice, federal craft legislation, and intellectual property. Stemming from this, her dissertation explores how Native-led craft “revival” projects in the 1930s and 40s, developed in tandem with federal arts policies, renegotiated period understandings of technology, ownership, and historicity. Julia received her BA from the University of Chicago and an MA from the Williams College Graduate Program. In her spare time, she also aids repatriation efforts at Harvard’s Peabody Museum.
“Radical Touch: Performative Sculpture and Assemblage in the 1970s”
Molly Superfine is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Art History & Archaeology at Columbia University. Her research focuses on modern and contemporary arts of the Americas, especially in the United States and Colombia. Superfine’s dissertation examines post-conceptual sculpture, assemblage, and performance through the intersections of critical race, feminist, and haptic theories. Her work has been supported by a Luce/ACLS Dissertation Fellowship in American Art and an Ary Stillman Fellowship in Modern Art. Prior to pursuing her doctoral degree at Columbia University, Superfine served as Assistant Director to a Chelsea gallery and held internships at the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Superfine received her BA in art history and Spanish from Duke University.
“Art & Other Longings: Feminist Interventions in Arab American Art”
Jehan is an interdisciplinary scholar working at the intersection of cultural anthropology, art history and criticism, and critical theory. Through her work, she often explores issues of memory, identity, erasure, and belonging in contemporary art and everyday life. Her current book project examines feminist interventions and aesthetic strategies in contemporary Arab American performance, new media, and installation art. Jehan is a recipient of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation Interpretive Fellowship at the Detroit Institute of Arts and has participated in the Smithsonian Institute in Museum Anthropology. She is currently completing her PhD in American Studies at Purdue University.
“For a Politics of Obscurity: David Hammons and Black Experimentalism 1974-1989”
Abbe Schriber received her PhD in 2020 from Columbia University’s Department of Art History & Archaeology. Her research analyzes the unconventional, genre-blurring practices of Afro-diasporic artists in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, and asks how diaspora—along with its attendant dynamics of retention and loss—is integral to encouraging visual experimentation and innovation. Her current book project is a study of David Hammons amid a network of artists, alternative spaces, and legacies of the Black Arts Movement in 1970s-80s New York. Recent writing includes peer-reviewed publications in ARTS and Women & performance: a journal of feminist theory, and contributions to catalogs for the Museum of Modern Art and The Studio Museum in Harlem.
“The Skyscraper and the Suburb: Architecture and the Making of Metropolitan America”
Joseph M. Watson is an assistant professor of architecture in the College of Architecture, Planning and Design at Kansas State University. He studies the architecture of the twentieth-century United States as a register of social, economic, and environmental change. He received a PhD in the History and Theory of Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania in 2018. His writings have appeared in the Avery Review, Journal of Architectural Education, Journal of Urban History, Planning Perspectives, and Thresholds. While at Crystal Bridges, Joseph will be revising his dissertation for publication.
“Hungry Eyes: Picturing Foodways and Indigeneity in Post-Revolutionary Mexico”
Lesley A. Wolff is an assistant professor of art history at Texas Tech University, specializing in Latinx and Latin American art and critical theory. Wolff’s current book project examines how the visual culture of foodways became a critical lens through which Mexican anxieties of indigeneity and globalism were negotiated during the nation’s volatile post-revolutionary era. She received her PhD in art history from Florida State University where she held the Adelaide Wilson Fellowship, and her work has previously appeared in publications such as African and Black Diaspora, Athanor, and Food, Culture, & Society.
“Seeing Feeling: The Work of Empathy in Exhibitionary Spaces”
Anni A. Pullagura is a PhD candidate in American Studies and an MA candidate in the History of Art and Architecture at Brown University. A specialist in modern and contemporary American art, her dissertation, “Seeing Feeling: The Work of Empathy in Exhibitionary Spaces,” considers how the contemporary art museum reinforces racial sightlines through the rhetoric of empathetic sight. She received her MA in Public Humanities in 2016, also from Brown, and a BA in Art History from Emory University in 2010.
“Abstraction Unframed: Abstract Murals at Midcentury”
Emily Warner is a historian of American and twentieth-century art, with a particular interest in the relationship between painting and architecture. Her research has been supported by the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Dedalus Foundation. Her current book project, Abstraction Unframed: Abstract Murals at Midcentury, offers a novel account of American abstract painting and its complex ties to modern architecture and public life. She earned her doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania in 2017 and has since held positions at Vassar College and University College London.
“Forging a New Contemporary: Art from Senegal and the Americas in Transnational Networks, 1962-1984”
Joseph L. Underwood is a scholar and curator whose research focuses on artists from the African continent and the Diaspora as they create networks around the globe in the 1970s and ‘80s. As an art historian of the modern and contemporary, his projects encompass themes including post-colonialism, (trans)nationalism, globalization, and biennialism.
“‘I’ve been all over this world four times:’ Travel, Place, and Memory in the Art of Joseph E. Yoakum”
Laura Minton is a PhD candidate in art history at the University of Kansas (KU) and Curatorial Assistant in the Department of Prints & Drawings at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. She specializes in twentieth-century American, global contemporary, and self-taught art. Her dissertation uses the theory of “sense of place” as a new interpretive approach to the drawings of Chicago artist Joseph E. Yoakum. She received an MA in art history from KU and a BA in art history from Wake Forest University.
“Hungry Eyes: Picturing Foodways and Indigeneity in Post-Revolutionary Mexico”
Lesley A. Wolff is an Assistant Professor of Art History at Texas Tech University, specializing in Latinx and Latin American art and critical theory. Wolff’s current book project examines how the visual culture of foodways became a critical lens through which Mexican anxieties of indigeneity and globalism were negotiated during the nation’s volatile post-revolutionary era. She received her Ph.D. in art history from Florida State University where she held the Adelaide Wilson Fellowship, and her work has previously appeared in publications such as African and Black Diaspora, Athanor, and Food, Culture, & Society.
“Making Their Mark: The Abstract Languages of Betty Blayton, Mary Lovelace O’Neal, Howardena Pindell, Sylvia Snowden, and Mildred Thompson”
Melissa Messina is an Independent Curator and Curator of the Mildred Thompson Estate. Her exhibitions, site-responsive projects, and public programs have been presented throughout the United States and abroad, and she has authored numerous essays on contemporary American artists. She recently co-curated Magnetic Fields: Expanding American Abstraction, 1960s to Today, an intergenerational traveling exhibition and accompanying catalog that highlighted abstraction by 21 black women artists. In 2018 she served as consulting curator for Mildred Thompson’s debut solo exhibition at Galerie Lelong & Co., New York, and co-curated the solo exhibition Mildred Thompson: Against the Grain at the New Orleans Museum of Art.
“Please Hold while I Connect You: Interdisciplinary Art, Telecommunications work, and Cold War America, 1947-1977”
Vanessa Reubendale is a PhD candidate in the Department of Art History at the University of Minnesota, where she also minored in American Studies. Currently, she is working on her dissertation, which considers the turn to interdisciplinary performance from the late 1940s to mid-1970s, especially as it aligned with parallel labors in the telecommunications industry. In addition to her studies at Minnesota, she holds an MA in art history from the University of Delaware.
“The Ring around The Rose: Jay DeFeo and her Circle”
Elizabeth Ferrell is a specialist in modern and contemporary art with an emphasis in post-war art of the United States. She received her Ph.D. from the University of California Berkeley in 2012 and is currently an Assistant Professor at Arcadia University. Her book manuscript, The Ring Around The Rose: Jay DeFeo and her Circle, examines collaborations that took place around The Rose, a monumental painting created by the San Francisco artist Jay DeFeo between 1958 and 1966.
“Commercial Imagination: American Art and the Advertising Picture”
Jennifer A. Greenhill is Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Southern California, where she teaches courses on American art and visual culture, and serves on the advisory committee of the Visual Studies Research Institute. She is the author of Playing It Straight: Art and Humor in the Gilded Age (University of California Press, 2012), and a co-editor of A Companion to American Art (Wiley-Blackwell, 2015). Her current book project, Commercial Imagination: American Art and the Advertising Picture, has been supported by fellowships and grants from the NEH, the Smithsonian, the Huntington Library, the Hagley Center for the Study of Business, Technology, and Society, and the Terra Foundation for American Art.
“New Topographics and the Reinvention of American Landscape Photography, 1975”
Mickevicius is a PhD candidate at Brown University specializing in the history of photography and modern and contemporary American art. Her dissertation considers the reception of the 1975 George Eastman Museum exhibition, “New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-altered Landscape.” Her research has been supported by the Henry Luce Foundation/American Council of Learned Societies, the Getty Research Institute, and the Center for Creative Photography. Emilia received her B.A. in Art History from the University of Chicago and has held positions in curatorial departments at the Art Institute of Chicago and the RISD Museum.
“Public Art, Private Land: Visual Culture, Land Use, and Settler Colonialism in the American West, 1890-1940”
Rife is a PhD candidate in art history at the University of Toronto, working on intersections between art and land use in the American West. Her dissertation examines how representations of natural resources in turn of the century festivals and New Deal murals worked to enshrine extractive identities in settler communities, specifically on the Great Plains. Her research has been supported by fellowships at the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the American Antiquarian Society, and a travel grant from the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies at BYU.
“Georgia O’Keeffe, Education, and the Art of Philanthropy”
A professor of Fine Arts at Brandeis University, Scott received her PhD from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, where she wrote her dissertation under the supervision of Prof. H. W. Janson. In 2014, Scott held the Leon Levy Senior Fellowship at the Center of the History of Collecting, The Frick Collection. There she researched works by J. M. W. Turner collected in America, with a focus on The Slave Ship in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. In 2015, she published Georgia O’Keeffe: Critical Lives. O’Keeffe’s work in the 1940s to promote and secure the legacy of Stieglitz, including the 1949 gift of works from his “American and modern” collection to Fisk University, will be the center of Scott’s ongoing project to be published.
“Hidden in Plain Sight: Slavery and Suppression in Antebellum American Art”
Rachel Stephens is an assistant professor of art history at the University of Alabama. She received her Ph.D. in art history from the University of Iowa. Her research focuses on the antebellum period, including southern art, race and slavery, and Jacksonian-era portraiture. Her first book Selling Andrew Jackson: Ralph E. W. Earl and the Politics of Portraiture will be released June 2018 by the University of South Carolina Press. Her current book project, which she will be preparing as a Tyson Fellow is entitled Hidden in Plain Sight: Slavery and Suppression in Antebellum American Art.
“Material Transmissions: Art and Communication in the Telegraphic Age.”
Applebaum’s research focuses on the intersections of American visual and material culture with histories of technology, media studies, and communication practices. Her current book project examines how traditional forms of creative expression, from landscape and genre paintings, to quilts and decorative desk sets, were used to integrate and understand new communication technologies and their social implications during the nineteenth- and early twentieth-century. Before completing her PhD at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2017, Lauren’s work was generously supported by the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Henry Luce Foundation/ACLS Dissertation Fellowship in American Art, and The Huntington Library.
“Alien Skins: Cosmic Performances of Transplanetary Latinidad.”
Hernández is an Assistant Professor of English at University of California, Riverside, focusing on Latina/o literary and visual culture studies. His first manuscript “Finding AIDS: Archival Body/Archival Space and the Chicano Avant-garde” examines alternative archive formations generated around the AIDS crisis in Latina/o artist communities in Southern California. Hernández’s articles have appeared in Aztlán, Collections, MELUS, and Radical History Review and the exhibition catalog for Art AIDS America edited by Jonathan Katz and Rock Hushka. He is curating Mundos Alternos: Art and Science Fiction in the Americas with UCR ARTSblock for the Getty Foundation’s Pacific Standard Time II: LA/LA Initiative scheduled to open in September of 2017. During his residency, he will be working on his next book project examining transplanetary performance art in the Americas.
“Lisette Model and the Inward Turn of Photographic Modernism.”
Sands is a PhD candidate in the history of art department at Yale University specializing in the history of photography. Her dissertation on Lisette Model examines the artist’s pivotal influence on American photographic modernism. Her research has been supported by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the American Council of Learned Societies, Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, and Peter E. Palmquist Memorial Fund for Historical Photographic Research. She has held positions in curatorial departments at the Museum of Modern Art, National Gallery of Art, J. Paul Getty Museum, and Pulitzer Arts Foundation. Audrey received her B.A. in art history from Barnard College and an M.S. in the history of art and visual culture from the University of Oxford.
Marin R. Sullivan
“Alloys: American Sculpture and Architecture at Midcentury.”
Sullivan received a PhD from the University of Michigan and is currently an Assistant Professor of Art History at Keene State College. Prior to her appointment, she served as Henry Moore Foundation Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Leeds. Her research focuses on European and American modern and contemporary art, with a particular focus on sculpture. Sullivan recently published “Sculptural Materiality in the Age of Conceptualism” (Routledge, 2016), and is co-curating a major exhibition on Harry Bertoia, scheduled to open at the Nasher Sculpture Center in 2019. She is also working on a book project about the relationship between American sculpture and architecture during the mid-twentieth century.
“From Both Sides of the Lens: Anthropology, Native Experience & Photographs of American Indians in French Exhibitions, 1870-1890.”
Voelker is a historian of photography and nineteenth-century art and visual culture, with particular focus in transatlantic exchange and indigenous representation. Her first book project considers photographs of American Indians either sent to, or made at, Parisian exhibitions between 1870-1890. The study also examines the continued life and ongoing meaning of these pictures in the Native communities represented within them today. Voelker earned her PhD from Boston University in 2017, and her work has been supported by the Smithsonian Institution (NMAH & NPG), the Amon Carter Museum of American Art, and the Buffalo Bill Center of the West.
Current Project: “Sumptuous and Beautiful, As They Were: Architectural Form, Everyday Life, and Cultural Encounter in a Seventeenth-Century New Mexico Mission.”
Ericson is an art history PhD candidate at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. His interdisciplinary dissertation explores cultural encounters in 17th-century New Mexico, focusing on the material expressions of everyday life among a community of Spanish Franciscans and Zuni Indians at the Purísima Concepción mission of Hawikku Pueblo. As a Peter Buck Fellow at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, he has studied the archaeology of this site and worked collaboratively with the Zuni community. He is also a practicing studio artist with roots in the Ozarks, where he completed his undergraduate studies in 2006.
Current Project: “Soundings: Art and the Aural Imagination in the Americas, 1590-1900.”
Gaudio graduated from Stanford University in 2001 and is currently a Professor of Art History at the University of Minnesota. He is interested in how the visual arts mediate knowledge. His publications have ranged across a wide temporal span, from the 13th to the 19th centuries, and include studies of visual ethnography, landscape representation, natural history illustration, cartographic practices, and the reception of religious prints. Currently, he is completing a book which investigates the significance of aural experience in relation to prints, paintings, and films created and circulated within the colonial Atlantic world.
Current Project: “Skyline Spectacular: Architecture, Aesthetics, and Outdoor Advertising in the American City.”
Lee is a PhD candidate in the Department of Art History at the University of Delaware. His dissertation examines the aesthetic politics of outdoor advertising in 20th-century America, especially as it played out in the urban skyline. A secondary area of research investigates modern architecture in South Africa. He received an MA from the Bard Graduate Center and a BA from Dartmouth College.
Current Project: “Made for ‘Modern Surroundings’: Intersections of Fine Art, Decorative Arts, and Design in America, 1920-1940.”
Padgett is a PhD candidate in the Department of Art History and Archaeology at Washington University in St. Louis. Her dissertation explores how modern artists worked across boundaries of fine art and design to envision a more dynamic interaction between aesthetic experience and everyday life in the early 20th century. She has previously held internships at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Amon Carter Museum of American Art and has most recently received fellowships at the Wolfsonian-FIU and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Susanneh Bieber’s area of expertise is modern and contemporary American art in an international context. She is particularly concerned with the relationship between art, architecture and the built environment, and has a professional interest in curatorial practices and museum studies. Before completing her PhD at the Freie Universität Berlin, she worked as curator at the Tate Modern in London and the Fresno Metropolitan Museum in California. Bieber is currently completing her book manuscript, Construction Sites: American Artists Engage the Built Environment, 1960-75, and will use her fellowship time to work on a second book that focuses on American Regionalism in art, architecture and urban planning. Her scholarly work addresses the social role of art within the broader field of visual and material culture.
Corey Piper is currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Art History at the University of Virginia. His dissertation project, Animal Pursuits: Hunting and the Visual Arts in Nineteenth-Century America, traces the ways in which representations of hunting functioned across diverse areas of nineteenth-century life, including the natural sciences, Western expansion, and refined urban recreation, and examines how such imagery structured humans’ relationship to the natural world and furthered a range of political and social ideals. Corey previously served as curatorial associate for the Mellon and European collections at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, and has published research on a variety of topics including British sporting prints, Currier & Ives, and Édouard Manet.
Leslie Reinhardt holds a PhD from Princeton University. She will be working on a manuscript adaptation of her dissertation, Fabricated Images: Invented Dress in American Portraits of Women. The study will focus on the work of John Singleton Copley, who used invented dress in about half of his portraits of women. The study will offer close analysis of dresses in images, which often yield specific evidence of how an artist worked, the sources and models he used. In addition, as invented dress often “anticipated” actual developments in fashion, the study shows how art often ended up shaping what women later really wore. This study contextualizes this Anglo-American practice within contemporary discourse on the ideal woman. Texas native, Harvard graduate, Reinhardt has most recently been Senior Fellow at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC, and currently teaches Art History at George Washington University.
Breanne Robertson was recently Visiting Assistant Professor of American Art at Wesleyan University, where she taught courses on art and material culture in the departments of Art History, American Studies, and Latin American Studies. Her research interests focus on cross-cultural exchange between the United States and Mexico from the eighteenth century to the present. As a Tyson Scholar at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Breanne will complete work on her book manuscript, which analyzes pre-Columbian imagery in U.S. public art to elucidate U.S.-Latin American foreign policy and domestic race relations during World War II. A second project examines nineteenth-century artist George Martin Ottinger’s “Old America” history paintings and the beliefs and missionary efforts of Mormon Utah. Breanne received her PhD from University of Maryland in 2012, and has held fellowships from the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum Research Center, Smithsonian American Art Museum, and Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection.
Annie Ronan is currently a PhD candidate in Stanford University’s Department of Art and Art History, and formerly the 2013-14 Douglass Foundation Predoctoral Fellow in American Art at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. A specialist in 19th-century American art and visual culture, her dissertation project, “Beauty and the Bestiary: Animal Art and Humane Thought in the Guilded Age,” examines how American artists like Winslow Homer, Astley D.M. Cooper, William Holbrook Beard, and Edward Kemeys represented animals at the turn of the century, an era during which humanity’s relationship with and responsibility to the natural world was being radically reevaluated.
Jason Hill was recently 2011-13 Terra Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow in American Art at the Institut National d’Histoire de l’Art in Paris, where he taught courses on American art and media culture at the École Normale Supérieure, SciencesPo, and Université Paris Ouest Nanterre. He has published essays and criticism in such periodicals as American Art, Études Photographiques, Photography & Culture, and ˆX-TRA. He is presently completing a book on the 1940s New York tabloid daily, PM, which employed as journalists such important American artists as Weegee, Ad Reinhardt, and Ralph Steiner. With Vanessa Schwartz, Jason is also co-editing a volume on the art, history, and visual culture of news pictures.
Katherine Manthorne, a specialist in modern art of the Americas, earned her PhD from Columbia University. She is currently Professor of Art History at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. Prior to that, she served as Director of the Research Center at Smithsonian’s American Art Museum and Executive Editor of the journal American Art. Previously focused on artistic exchanges across the Americas, she then shifted her attention to the role of women in the American art world in a biography of Eliza Pratt Greatorex. Her current project is “You Ought to be in Pictures”: Film and American Modernism, 1896-1939.
Melissa Warak is the Assistant Professor of Modern and Contemporary Art at Sam Houston State University. She earned her MA and PhD at the University of Texas at Austin. Warak was the 2012-2013 Vivian L. Smith Foundation Fellow at the Menil Collection in Houston.
Nika Elder specializes in American Art from the eighteenth century through the present and holds a particular interest in the intersection between visual art and material culture. Her current book project analyzes the still life paintings of the late nineteenth-century artist William Harnett in light of contemporaneous understandings and uses of objects in the humanities and social sciences. A second project examines references to the material and visual culture of slavery in the early work of contemporary artist Lorna Simpson. Her work has been supported by the Wyeth Foundation/Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Center for the Advanced Study of the Visual Arts, and various departments and programs at Princeton University. Nika received her PhD from Princeton University in 2013. She is a Post-Doctoral Fellow/Lecturer in the Princeton Writing Program and has previously taught at Rutgers University.
Washington University in St. Louis
Matthew Bailey is a PhD candidate in the Department of Art History and Archaeology and a Lynn Cooper Harvey Fellow in American Culture Studies at Washington University in St. Louis. He has also held dissertation fellowships from the Henry Luce Foundation/American Council of Learned Societies and the Winterthur Museum, Garden, and Library. As a Tyson Scholar at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Matthew Bailey will continue work on his dissertation, which examines the way artists conceptually and physically interacted with paint in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
University of Texas at Austin
Dr. Rather is a tenured member of the art history faculty in the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Texas, Austin. There since 1986, she has taught and supervised students ranging from beginning undergraduates to doctoral candidates. As a scholar, Rather first published Archaism, Modernism and the Art of Paul Manship. Her work then began to focus on artists during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, with resulting articles on John Singleton Copley, Benjamin West, Gilbert Stuart and others appearing in such leading journals as Art Bulletin, American Art, William and Mary Quarterly, and Eighteenth-Century Studies. As a Tyson Scholar at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Susan Rather will complete her manuscript for a book examining in depth what it meant to be an American artist during the colonial and early national era.