The constellation of instructors who participate in the Graduate Program is large. The extraordinary professional range of the teaching corps constitutes one of the Program’s key assets. Beyond the director and the associate director, two members of the art department rotate into the Program annually. Faculty, advisers, and internship supervisors also include curators at the Clark, the Clark’s research staff, curators at WCMA and MASS MoCA, and conservators at the Williamstown Art Conservation Center. Clark Fellows, Williams faculty from outside the Art Department, and other area art professionals participate in the Program less formally. The faculty is further supplemented by the annual Robert Sterling Clark Visiting Professorship, appointed jointly by the Graduate Program and the Art Department. The Program’s uncommonly wide range of instructors nurtures a rich and diverse intellectual climate encompassing wide disciplinary approaches to the history of art.
Director of the Graduate Program
and Class of 1955 Memorial Professor of Art, Williams College
Marc Gotlieb received his Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins in 1990. He is the author of The Plight of Emulation: Ernest Meissonier and French Salon Painting, as well as further essays on French Romantic art, on the image of the artist, and on Orientalist painting. He is also past Editor-in-chief of Art Bulletin, and is currently working on a book centering on “the Orientalist Sublime.” His graduate teaching encompasses nineteenth-century art, art historical methods and approaches, pedagogy in the visual arts, and related concerns.
Associate Director, Research and Academic Program, The Clark
Associate Curator of Contemporary Projects
David Breslin is the Associate Director of the Research and Academic Program and Associate Curator for Contemporary Projects at the Clark. He has curated exhibitions on the work of El Anatsui and Juan Muñoz and has published essays on, among others, Paul Thek, Valentin Carron, and Jenny Holzer. Breslin currently is completing a manuscript on public art, feminism, and language-based practices in the United States in the 1980s. He holds a doctorate in the History of Art and Architecture from Harvard University, a master’s degree in the History of Art from Williams College, and a bachelor’s degree in English from Amherst College.
Director and Conservator of Paintings, Williamstown Art Conservation Center
and Director, Atlanta Conservation Center
After earning a BFA in printmaking from the Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, MI (1973), Tom Branchick received his M.A. and Certificate of Advanced Study from the State University College of Oneonta, Cooperstown Graduate Program. He completed an internship at the Williamstown Center where he subsequently joined the staff in 1981. Before coming to Williamstown, he was employed as a museum exhibit specialist for the New York State Museum. Appointed Director of the Center in 1997, Mr. Branchick continues to head the paintings department in Williamstown. He is a member of the American Institute for the Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works.
C. Ondine Chavoya
Associate Professor of Art, Williams College
Ondine Chavoya is associate professor of art history and Latina/o studies. His current project is an anthology of Chicana art theory focusing on the four-member Los Angeles-based group, Asco. After earning his B.A. from the University of California at Santa Cruz, Chavoya received his Ph.D. at the University of Rochester in New York.
Manton Curator of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs, The Clark
Jay A. Clarke received her Ph.D. from Brown University in 1999 and served as a curator at the Art Institute of Chicago from 1997 through 2009. Her publications include Becoming Edvard Munch: Influence, Anxiety, and Myth (2009) and articles on the critical reception of Käthe Kollwitz and Max Beckmann, Julius Meier-Graefe as an art dealer, Munch’s use of repetition, and Munch’s reputation in Germany, among others. She was editor of Tradition, Innovation, and Nostalgia: The Manton Collection of British Art (2012), The Impressionist Line from Degas to Toulouse-Lautrec (2013), and co-editor of The Spiritual Landscapes of Adrienne Farb, 1980-2006 (2006). Clarke taught graduate seminars at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago from 2001 through 2008.
Director, The Clark
Michael Conforti received his M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard University. An expert in sculpture, decorative arts and design as well as the history of museums and collecting, he was Curator of Sculpture and Decorative Arts at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco (1977-80) and Chief Curator at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts (1980-94) before coming to the Clark in 1994. Currently he is a trustee of the Amon Carter Museum, MASS MoCA, the American Academy in Rome, and AAM/ICOM (the American Association of Museums’ International Committee on Museums). He is also a membre titulaire of CIHA (the Comité International d’histoire de l’art) and a member of the National Committee for the History of Art. From June 2008 to June 2010, he served as President of the board of trustees of the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD).
Curator of Visual Arts, MASS MoCA
A graduate of the Williams College Graduate Program, Susan Cross was formerly a curator at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum where she organized exhibitions around such artists as Daniel Buren, Bruce Nauman, and Pierre Huyghe. Cross also worked with the Young Collectors Council to make acquisitions for the museum’s permanent collection by contemporary artists such as Ricci Albenda, Stephen Dean, Koo Jeong-a, Jonathan Monk, Marjetica Potrc, Robin Rhode, and Alyson Shotz, among others. Cross organized the first museum survey of the artist Spencer Finch and published his first monograph. She is currently working on a commission and catalogue with Simon Starling, and co-editing a book on Sol LeWitt. At Williams she teaches a course on contemporary art writing, treating such issues as the projected image, collaborative art practices, and issues around globalization. She has recently been awarded Emily Hall Tremaine Exhibition Award for a forthcoming project at MASS MoCA.
Lecturer in Romance Languages, Williams College
Nicole Desrosiers teaches Intensive French Grammar and Translation (Fall) and Readings in French Art History and Criticism (Spring). She received an MA in English Literature from the University of Clermont-Ferrand, and an MA and a PhD in French Literature and Language from the University of Massachusetts, concentrating in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. She has taught at Trinity College in Hartford and at Bennington College. Nicole is interested in translation, semantics and the pedagogy of language where culture, literature and art intersect. She is presently concentrating her efforts in writing the textbooks for her courses.
Deputy Director of Curatorial Affairs, Williams College Museum of Art
Dorin graduated from the University of California Santa Cruz with a bachelor’s degree in art history and studio art. She received her master’s degree from Williams in 2000. Prior to WCMA, Dorin was associate curator of contemporary art at the Art Institute of Chicago, where she organized dozens of temporary exhibitions featuring artists such as Pierre Huyghe, Alfredo Jaar, Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle, Danh Vo, and Kara Walker. She has written extensively, including editing Film, Video, and New Media at the Art Institute of Chicago, a publication documenting the AIC’s time-based media collection, and Richard Hawkins: Third Mind (Yale University Press, 2010). She has served as a visiting lecturer and critic at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), Columbia College, Chicago, University of Chicago, and University of Illinois Chicago.
Senior Lecturer, Williams College
Holly Edwards has degrees from Princeton University (B.A.), University of Michigan (M.A. and Certificate of Museum Practice) and Institute of Fine Arts, NYU (Ph.D). Fieldwork in the Indus Valley and a fellowship at the Freer Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. completed her training. Thus, she brings diverse experiences and interests into the classroom, offering courses that range from mosque architecture to Persian painting and photography. Much of her recent scholarship has taken curatorial form, resulting in catalogues devoted to American Orientalism (Noble Dreams, Wicked Pleasures, Princeton, 2000) and photography’s traffic in pain (Beautiful Suffering, Chicago, 2007). Currently, she is working on the history of Afghan photography.
Starr Director of Research and Academic Program, The Clark
Darby English graduated from Williams College in 1996 with a degree in art history and philosophy and earned a doctorate in visual and cultural studies from the University of Rochester in 2002. He served on the University of Chicago’s faculty from 2003 to 2013, teaching modern and contemporary art and cultural studies. He served as the assistant director of the Research and Academic Program from 1999 through 2003. English is the author of How to See a Work of Art in Total Darkness (MIT Press, 2007). English is also a co-editor of Kara Walker: Narratives of a Negress (MIT Press, 2003; republished Rizzoli, 2007). He is currently completing work on a new book, 1971: A Year in the Life of Color, which studies social experiments with modernist art undertaken over a period just prior to that year. He is the recipient of fellowships, grants, and awards from the Institute for Advanced Study, the National Humanities Center, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts/Creative Capital Foundation, the Getty Research Institute, and the College Art Association, among others. In 2010, English received Chicago’s Llewellyn John and Harriet Manchester Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, the nation’s oldest such prize.
Chair of the Art Department and J. Kirk T. Varnedoe 67 Professor of Art, Williams College
After undergraduate studies at Barnard, Zirka Filipczak did all her graduate work at Harvard. An expert on Flemish and Dutch art of the seventeenth century, her thematic research and teaching interests cover a wider chronological scope, and include the gendered roles given to men and women (the exhibition Hot Dry Men, Cold Wet Women); working methods of artists (articles about Leonardo, Vermeer, Dutch tonal still-lifes); the significance of poses and gestures (articles about Leonardo, Rembrandt, Rubens, portraits of unconventional women); art about art (Picturing Art and Artists in Antwerp: 1550-1700); and images depicting miracles and “miracle-working” sculptures of the Madonna (articles about both themes). Her current research project is on the relationship of altarpieces by Rubens and the cult of “miracle-working” Madonnas.
Charles W. (Mark) Haxthausen
Robert Sterling Clark Professor of Art History, Williams College
Mark Haxthausen received his B.A. degree from the University of St. Thomas (Houston) and his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Columbia University. After teaching at Indiana University, Harvard University (where he was also curator of the Busch-Reisinger Museum), and the University of Minnesota, he joined the Williams faculty in 1993, serving as director of the Graduate Program until 2007. His teaching focuses on European modern and contemporary art and on art-historical method. He is editor of The Two Art Histories: The Museum and the University (2002) and co-editor of Berlin: Culture and Metropolis (1990). Current research interests include: the theory and criticism of Carl Einstein; the Bauhaus; Ernst Ludwig Kirchner; Paul Klee; Sigmar Polke; and Fritz Lang’s Metropolis.
Professor of Art, Williams College
An expert on the art of ancient Greece, Guy Hedreen’s courses are interdisciplinary, touching on literature, religion, mythology, and society as well as the art of antiquity. He also teaches the history and methodology of art history. He has published two books on Greek art, Silens in Attic Black-Figure Vase-Painting: Myth and Performance (1992), and Capturing Troy: The Narrative Functions of Landscape in Archaic and Early Classical Greek Art (2001). He has also published a number of articles on Dionysiac mythology, ritual, and drama; the Trojan War in Greek art and literature; and the nature of visual narration. He received his B.A. from Pomona College and Ph.D. from Bryn Mawr College.
Robert Sterling Clark Visiting Professor 2014-15
Director Emeritus, Research and Academic Program, The Clark
Michael Holly teaches critical theory, methodology, and historiography in art history. She was co-founder and chair of the Visual and Cultural Studies Program at the University of Rochester. She is the author and editor of studies on the historiography of and theory in art history, including Panofsky and the Foundations of Art History (1984), Visual Culture: Images and Interpretations (1994), Past Looking: Historical Imagination and the Rhetoric of Images (1996), The Subjects of Art History: Historical Objects in Contemporary Perspective (1998), and Art History, Aesthetics, and Visual Studies (2002) She is the recipient a range of fellowships, including a Guggenheim, a Getty, and grants from CASVA, the ACLS, the NEH, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Mellon Foundation. Her most recent book project on the history of art as a melancholy discipline, The Melancholy Art was published in 2013 by Princeton University Press.
Professor of Art, Williams College
Scarlett Jang received a B.A. from Cheng-chih University, Taipei, Taiwan, and her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. At Williams she has taught a survey of Asian Art as well as specialized classes, including “Images and Anti-images: Zen Art in China and Japan” and “In Pursuit of Clouds and Mists: Chinese Landscape Painting.” She has recently finished a book manuscript “Art, Politics, and Palace Eunuchs in Ming China (1368-1644).” She also investigates the chastity cult, courtesan culture, and illustrated erotic novellas in late Ming China. She is the author of “The Eunuch Agency Silijian and the Imperial Publishing Enterprise in Ming China” (2008); “Form, Content, and Audience: A Common Theme in Painting and Woodblock-printed Books of the Ming Dynasty” (1997); and “Realm of the Immortals: Paintings Decorating the Jade Hall of the Northern Sung” (1993).
Amos Lawrence Professor of Art, Williams College
E.J. Johnson specializes in the architecture of the Italian Renaissance and the twentieth century. A graduate of Williams, he received his Ph.D. from the Institute of Fine Arts, where he studied with Richard Krautheimer and Wolfgang Lotz. Publications include Sant’Andrea in Mantua, The Building History (1975); Charles Moore, Buildings and Projects, 1949-1986 (1986); Memphis: An Architectural Guide (with Robert Russel, 1990); Style Follows Function: Architecture of Marcus T. Reynolds (1993); Drawn from the Source: The Travel Sketches of Louis I. Kahn (with Michael J. Lewis, 1996). Recent work has centered on sixteenth-century Venice, with essays in the JSAH, Renaissance Quarterly, Shakespeare Studies, and the Art Bulletin. Current projects include a study of the architecture of theaters in Italy and a textbook on world architecture.
Lecturer in German, Williams College
Elizabeth Kieffer teaches German Reading for Art History. She is a translator, whose recent translations include contributions to Sol LeWitt: 100 Views, edited by Susan M. Cross and Denise Markonish. Kieffer also serves as a researcher for ARTstor. She received her B.A. from Douglass College of Rutgers University, with further study at the University of Tübingen.
Faison-Pierson-Stoddard Professor of Art History, Williams College
Michael J. Lewis has taught American art and architecture at Williams College since 1993. He received his B.A. from Haverford College in 1980, and after two years at the University of Hannover Germany, he received his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1989. He has taught at Bryn Mawr College; McGill University, Montreal; and the University of Natal, South Africa. His books include Frank Furness: Architecture and the Violent Mind (2001), The Gothic Revival (2002), and American Art and Architecture (2006). In 1995 he received the Society of Architectural Historians’ Alice Davis Hitchcock award for his book August Reichensperger: The Politics of the German Gothic Revival, which was based on his dissertation. Among his research interests are architectural theory; utopian and communal societies; the meaning of monuments; and the problem of creativity and collaboration. He is currently writing City of Refuge: the Other Utopia under the auspices of a Guggenheim Fellowship. A critic of architecture, he writes for a wide variety of publications. Lewis was named Faison-Pierson-Stoddard Professor of Art in 2008.
Thomas J. Loughman
Associate Director for Program and Planning, The Clark
Tom holds an undergraduate degree from Georgetown University, a master’s degree from the Williams Graduate Program in the History of Art, and a doctorate in art history from Rutgers University. Prior to joining the Clark in 2008, Tom held curatorial posts at the Phoenix Art Museum and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. During his professional formation, he held a number of fellowships, museum appointments at the national Gallery of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and elsewhere. At the Clark he has shepherded a number of international programs beyond his responsibilities as an administrator, chief among them the establishment and execution of a global tour of the Clark’s core collection, Great French Paintings from the Clark (2011-2014) which has been seen by nearly 2 million visitors in Europe, North America, and Asia. A new Chinese edition of his recent exhibition catalogue, Sterling Clark in China (Yale:2012) was released in September 2013.
Associate Professor of Art, Williams College
Peter Low received his B.A. from the University of Toronto, his M.A. and Ph.D. from the Johns Hopkins University, and his L.M.S. from the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies. Low’s courses at Williams have covered art and architecture from the Early Christian to Late Medieval periods, and have addressed themes such as “Picturing God in the Middle Ages,” “Romanesque and Gothic Art and Architecture: the Medieval Church in Context,” “East Meets West in the Art of the European Middle Ages,” and “Representing Joan of Arc.” His research interests have centered on Romanesque portal sculpture considered within its original physical, functional, and ritual contexts, with special attention paid to the relationship at monastic sites of art, pilgrimage, and liturgy. The larger aims of his research have been to understand the role played by medieval religious art in general in activating communal worship—both lay and monastic—within a church setting. Low has published in Jewish Art, Art Bulletin, and Word & Image, amongst other journals, and is currently writing a book entitled Building a Dwelling Place for God: the Narthex Portals at Vézelay and Ephesians 2:11-22 in Medieval Art.
Professor of Art, Williams College
Liz McGowan received a B.A. from Princeton University and a Ph.D. from the Institute of Fine Arts. At Williams she has taught courses on ancient Greek art and architecture, from the Bronze Age through the end of the Hellenistic period. Her classes include “Greek Art and Myth,” the iconography of deities and heroes in ancient Greece, and “Body of Evidence,” a survey of sculpture that considers changing concepts of the body in ancient Greece from the Neolithic through the Hellenistic periods. She has taught seminars on Hellenistic sculpture, on sanctuaries, on ancient funerary art, and on monuments and memorials over time. She has published studies on Greek funerary monuments and on the architectural orders. Her current projects include the origins of architectural motifs and sculptural decoration in Archaic Greece, and a study on Greek funerary monuments, memory, and cognition.
Director of Exhibitions and Collections and Curator of Decorative Arts, The Clark
Kathleen Morris is the Clark’s Director of Exhibitions and Collections and Curator of Decorative Arts. Prior to joining the Clark staff, she was Associate Director for Exhibitions and Collections Management, and Curator of European Sculpture, Decorative Arts, and Prints at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in 2005. Her dissertation dealt with contemporary sources on the life and art of Gian Lorenzo Bernini. In 2004, she was project co-curator with VMFA Director Michael Brand on Van Gogh and Gauguin: An Artistic Dialogue in the South of France at the VMFA. Morris contributed several catalogue entries to Bonjour, Monsieur Courbet!: The Bruyas Collection from the Musée Fabre, Montpellier.
Curator of American Art, Williams College Museum of Art
Kevin Murphy holds a B.A. from Pitzer College of The Claremont Colleges in California and an M.A. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He earned a Ph.D. in art history from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Murphy was most recently a curator and program manager at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. Previously, he served as associate curator of American art at the Huntington Library in San Marino, California. Murphy has taught art history at the University of California, Santa Barbara, the University of California, Los Angeles, and San Diego Mesa College. He is the recipient of several fellowships and grants, including the Terra Foundation for American Art award and the Henry Luce Foundation Dissertation Research Grant. He is lead curator of the exhibition, “American Encounters: Anglo-American Portraiture in an Age of Revolution,” working in collaboration with the Musée du Lourve, Paris, the Terra Foundation for American Art, and the High Museum in Atlanta, Georgia. Murphy will author the main catalogue essay for this exhibition’s catalogue, as well as an essay on Gilbert Stuart’s George Washington, as part of the 2014 “American Encounters” series.
Dennis Meenan ’54 Third Century Professor of Art, Williams College
Carol Ockman is the author of Ingres’s Eroticized Bodies: Retracing the Serpentine Line (1995) and Sarah Bernhardt: The Art of High Drama (2005), a catalogue, co-authored with Kenneth E. Silver, of the major multimedia exhibition they curated at the Jewish Museum in New York in 2005-06. Ockman is also the author of studies on French art of the late-eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, as well as contemporary art and culture, including such subjects as the nude, portraiture, stereotypes, and Barbie. Ockman also has a long held interest in live performance. She has been a resident at the Bellagio Center (Lake Como, Italy) and in New York, where she worked on two projects: Sarah Bernhardt’s Handkerchief, a book about a handkerchief passed on to great actresses of the American theatre (Helen Hayes, Julie Harris, Susan Strasberg, and Cherry Jones), and “The Invention of the Modern Nude,” an essay about how the nude came to mean the female nude under the Napoleonic Empire.
Graduate Program Post-Doctoral Teaching Fellow
Kristen Oehlrich received her doctorate in the History of Art and Architecture Department at Brown University. Her teaching and research interests focus on the history of photography, film, visual culture, and the intersections of modern and contemporary American and European art. Her dissertation examined Walker Evans’s formative years in photography, 1926-1938, in the context of transatlanticism, theory, literature, and politics. Oehlrich received her M.A. in Art History and Criticism from Stony Brook University (2002). She has held positions at the Museum of Modern Art, the RISD Museum, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, and has taught art history and theory at Parsons, The School of Visual Arts, Brown University, and RISD. Oehlrich was a Helena Rubenstein Fellow in the Whitney Independent Study Program in Critical Studies, and a selected member of the Beinecke Library Master Class at Yale University in photography and archival research. She has been a recipient of fellowships from the Victorian Society in America as well as the DAAD for research and teaching at the Bauhaus, Dessau, Germany.
Class of ’56 Director of the Williams College Museum of Art
Christina Olsen completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Chicago. She earned M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in art history from the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to her directorship at WCMA, Olsen was the director of education and public programs at the Portland Art Museum in Oregon from 2008 to 2012. She was formerly a program officer at the Getty Foundation (2005-2008), where she oversaw the Foundation’s worldwide grants to museums and archives for scholarly catalogs and publications, archives, and interpretation, and launched an international initiative centered on developing prototypes for online scholarly catalogs for museums (the Online Scholarly Cataloguing Initiative). Prior to that she worked at the Getty Museum and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Olsen has lectured and published on a wide range of topics, including secular painting in Quattrocento Florence, the rise of the tarot card deck, museum interpretation, and new social and pedagogical practices in museums.
Lecturer in English, Williams College
Paul earned his B.A. in Creative Writing at Hampshire College in 1975, and has an extensive list of publishing credits that includes poems, short stories, and novels. A number of his works have been short-listed for such prizes as the Nebula Award, the World Fantasy Award, and the Arthur C. Clarke Award. In addition to teaching the Graduate Program’s expository writing class, Paul has taught a variety of literature and writing courses at Williams and at other venues across the country, and has participated in numerous literary conventions and conferences, often as a guest of honor.
Senior Curator and Curator of Paintings and Sculpture, The Clark
A specialist in French art of the 17th to the 19th centuries, Rand has lectured and published widely on the 18th-century French painting and drawing, 19th-century French painting, and 18th-century British printmaking. His most recent major publication is Claude Lorrain: the Painter as Draftsman (2006). He received his doctorate from the University of Michigan.
Associate Professor of English, Williams College
Bernie has degrees from University of Pennsylvania (Ph.D. 2005; M.A. 2001) and University of California at Berkeley (B.A. 1997, Highest Honors). His courses range from traditional genre and single-author surveys to interdisciplinary seminars that investigate a particular topic (like time or the human face) by integrating the study of literature, philosophy, art, and even developmental and cognitive psychology. He co-edited with Richard Eldridge the book Stanley Cavell and Literary Studies: Consequences of Skepticism, a collection of essays that explores the relevance of Cavell’s writings for literary theorists and critics. Bernie’s current book project, entitled The Philosophy of the Face in the 20th Century, focusses on the philosophical significance of faces, face perception, and physiognomy for a number of key 20th-century thinkers.
Associate Professor of Art, Williams College
Stefanie Solum received the M.A. and Ph.D. from Berkeley, joining the Williams College faculty in 2001. Her courses range from geographically based surveys of the period to specialized courses on such topics as the domestic visual culture of the Italian Renaissance, and Michelangelo and the myth of the Renaissance artist. She also teaches courses in Women’s and Gender Studies and serves on the Advisory Committee for that program. Solum’s recent work explores issues of women’s patronage and power in fifteenth-century Florence, was supported by the Fulbright Program and the American Council of Learned Societies and has been published in the Art Bulletin. Her book manuscript, Saving the Medici: Lucrezia Tornabuoni and the Unworldly Power of Patronage, provides a new model for understanding women’s contributions to the visual arts in Renaissance Florence, based on contemplative spirituality. Solum’s most recent project explores the intersection between Christian piety and innovation Renaissance art.
Professor of Art History and Romance Languages at the University of Chicago & Robert Sterling Clark Visiting Professor, Williams College
Rebecca Zorach received her Ph.D. in Art History with departmental honors, August 1999. Rebecca’s scholarship focuses on late medieval and Renaissance art, primarily French and Italian, as well as gender studies, critical theory, and historiography. Other of her interests include art in Chicago in the 1960s; prints, print culture, and technology; and the theory and practice of collaboration.