Panelist: Kjell Wangensteen

Kjell WangensteenKjell Wangensteen will present “On Vasari’s Vite and Kano Einō’s Honchō gashi: An Historiographical Experiment” during Panel #1.

Are there aspects of an history of art that might be considered “universal” (i.e., shared across cultures), or is each tradition necessarily distinct and culturally-specific?  This paper concentrates on two foundational art texts–one from Renaissance Italy, the other from Edo-period Japan–and addresses the basic question of how (art) historical narratives are constructed and interpreted, both within and across very different cultural contexts.

Kjell Wangensteen is a second-year graduate student at Princeton focusing on Northern European Renaissance and Baroque art.


Panelist: Shira Backer

Shira BackerShira Backer is a third-year M.A. candidate in History of Art at Bryn Mawr College, completing a thesis on the ceramics of Sterling Ruby, a contemporary, Los Angeles-based artist who also works in collage and video, along with other sculptural media. The thesis explores the relationship of a recent series of sculptures, “Basin Theology,” to parts of Ruby’s oeuvre that function as social critique in more obvious ways. Shira received her B.A. in Philosophy from Barnard College, and spent a year working in the education department of the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers, New York. In 2011-2012, she is serving as a Graduate  Assistant in Special Collections at Bryn Mawr.

She will present “Discipline Slip: Art Therapy and the Ceramics of Sterling Ruby” during Panel #3.

Ditching the jargon

Should we ditch the jargon at the door as well? Check out Met Museum director Thomas Campbell’s recent TED talk on breaking down boundaries at the museum and in art history

TED Blog

Photo: James Duncan Davidson

Thomas P. Campbell, director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, starts his TEDTalk by telling a story of the first time he took an art course. It was taught by Pietro, an “irrascible Italian, who drank and swore much too much.” At one point he projected a very graphic image on a wall, with many figures of wine and cavorting, and asked them what it was. Campbell said it was a “bacchanal.” His teacher responded, “You fucking bookworm. It’s a fucking orgy.” He’s tried to bring that sense to his curation.

His own eureka moment came when he was studying the art of the courts of modern Europe, which was generally discussed in terms of the paintings. But in everything he read, there were descriptions of the tapestries, and for good reason: They were portable. “You could transform a cold, dank interior into…

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Panelist: Eva Gratta

Eva Gratta is a Ph.D. student in Art History at the Graduate Center, City University of New York, specializing in American Art pre-1945.  Additionally, she is a research assistant at the New-York Historical Society.  Her paper explores maritime imagery in the colonial Americas as a means to express global relationships during the long eighteenth century.

Ms. Gratta will present “Maritime Imagery in the American Colonial Experience: A Transnational Approach” during Panel #1.

Panelist: Pierluigi Serraino

Pierluigi Serraino by Rondal Partridge

photo: Rondal Partridge

Pierluigi Serraino is an architect, author, and educator. He holds multiple professional and research degrees in architecture from Italy and the United States. Prior to opening his independent design practice, Pierluigi worked at Mark Mack architects, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, and Anshen+Allen working on a variety of residential and institutional projects in the United States and overseas. His work and writing have been published in professional and scholarly journals, among them Architectural Record, Architecture California, Journal of Architectural Education, and Architectural Design (UK). He has authored four books, among them “Modernism Rediscovered” (Taschen 2000) and “NorCalMod: Icons of Northern California Modernism” (Chronicle Books). He has written numerous essays, the latest appeared in “Solid States: Concrete in Transition” (Princeton Architectural Press, 2010) on the pioneering modeling methods of Eero Saarinen & Associates and in “California Houses of Gordon Drake” (Stout Publishers, 2011) on the experimental designs of Gordon Drake. He has lectured widely on the subject of Mid-century modern, Architectural Photography, and Digital Design. Current research interests are the work of California architect Donald Olsen (forthcoming book, 2012), the 1958 ground-breaking creativity study on 40 architects very recently resurfaced, and changes in professional practice models brought about through the digital age.

Mr. Serraino will present “UNIVERSALITY BEATS PARTICULARITY: Sameness and Placemaking beyond Geography and Time in Twentieth Century Architecture” during Panel #2.

Panelist: Delia Solomons

Delia SolomonsDelia Solomons is a Ph.D. Candidate at the Institute of Fine Arts (NYU) specializing in twentieth-century art of the Americas and Europe. She currently works as the Graduate Curatorial Assistant at the Grey Art Gallery and a Preceptor in the Department of Art History at NYU. In addition to teaching, she has worked as a Freelance Writer/Editor/Researcher for the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and a Curatorial Assistant for the exhibition “Encuentros con los 30,” which will open in Fall 2012 at the Museo Reina Sofía. She has presented papers at the Pratt Institute, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and University of Texas at Austin. Her dissertation, which is in progress, examines the evolution of Latin American art as a museological and scholarly discipline in the United States in the 1960s, as well as artists’ responses to this emerging discourse.

During Panel #2 at “The End of the –ist and the Future of Art History,” she will present a paper titled “Chaos Theory: Luis Felipe Noé in New York,” which examines the poetics of chaos—a deconstructive principle that undermines rigid societal and conceptual categories—developed by the Argentine artist in his assemblages and theoretical writings over the course of two trips to New York in the 1960s.