Art History

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Graduate Students

  • Alice Heeren


    My name is Alice Heeren. I received my BA in Art Education and a BFA in Printmaking from the Univeridade Federal de Minas Gerais in Brazil during which time I worked at the Laboratório de Conservação de Bens Culurais. In 2011 I received a MA in Art History, Theory and Criticism from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a thesis entitled "The Inhotim Cultural Institute: the museum in the Neodevelopmentalist era." After an internship at MoMA and two years in the graduate program of the University of Illinois, I am currently pursuing my Ph.D at SMU in the RASC/a: Rhetorics of Art, Space and Culture. My research is in Modern and Contemporary Brazilian Art and Architecture with a focus on memory studies. Finally, I am currently the sub editor for Latin American Visual Arts for the upcoming Routledge Encyclopedia of Modernism.

  • Asiel Sepulveda


    Asiel Sepúlveda is a doctoral student in the Rhetorics of Art, Space and Culture: Ph.D. Program in Art History. He received a bachelor’s degree in Art History from Florida International University, and an M.A in Art History from Southern Methodist University. His interests include nineteenth-century Cuban visual culture, commercial advertising, and urban studies. Asiel has received various grants and awards including the Dahesh Museum of Art Prize Best Paper at the 12th Annual Graduate Student Symposium in Nineteenth-Century Art(2015), co-sponsored by Dahesh Museum of Art and the Association of Historians of Nineteenth-Century Art. A version of his Master’s thesis titled “Humor and Social Hygiene in Havana’s Nineteenth-Century Cigarette Marquillas” will appear in the fall 2015 issue of Nineteenth-Century Art Worldwide. He is currently pursuing a doctoral dissertation that examines interactions among print, industry, and urban reform in nineteenth-century Havana.

  • Autumn Garcia


    My name is Autumn Garcia. I am a first year M.A. student in art history at Southern Methodist University. My research interests include the art of ancient Greece, particularly study of female figures in Classical and Hellenistic ceramic ware, with emphasis on the portrayal of Amazons. I graduated with a B.A. in history from Hardin-Simmons University in 2012 and was fortunate to have the opportunity to study abroad in Greece and Italy during the summer of 2009. After graduating, I completed an internship at the Meadows Museum in 2014 in which I assisted in the research and creation of educational materials for the Goya exhibition.

  • Carol Mach Barreto Pino


    Carol Mach Barreto Pino is a M.A. candidate in the RASC/a program at Southern Methodist University. She was born in Rio de Janeiro and immigrated to the United States at a young age. She received her B.A. in Art History from Goucher College in 2014. While at Goucher College, she interned with the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver, the Sítio Roberto Burle Marx in Barra de Guaratiba, the Museu Historico Nacional in Rio de Janeiro and the Baltimore War Memorial. Her current interests lie in Roberto Burle Marx and his involvement in shaping the urban landscape of cities in Latin American including but not limited to, Caracas, Rio de Janeiro, Recife, Buenos Aires and Brasilia during the twentieth century. While working on the transnational influence of a singular landscape architect, she is able to draw on the intersection between man-built environments and human interaction in the post-colonial world.

  • Claire Haley Cho


    Claire Haley Cho is a first-year M.A. student at Southern Methodist University. She graduated in 2014 from University of Southern California where she received her B.A. in both Art History and Fine Arts. While at USC, she studied abroad in Florence, Italy where she interned for the fototeca at Villa I Tatti: The Harvard University Research Center for Italian Renaissance Studies. She graduated with departmental honors upon completing a Senior Honors Thesis titled “Old Testament Typology in the Stammheim Missal.” In her studio practice, she works mainly in oil painting, printmaking, and ceramics. Her experience as an artist greatly influences and expands her approach to art historical scholarship. Her research interests lie in medieval art, especially in the intersection of Christian theology and art. She is also would like to further explore the underlying connections between medieval thought and the art of nineteenth-century Romanticism.

  • Claudia Zapata


    Claudia Zapata is pursuing her Ph.D. at SMU in the RASC/a: Rhetorics of Art, Space and Culture Program in Art History. She received her B.A. and M.A. from University of Texas in art history, specializing in Pre-Columbian and U.S. Latino/Chicano art. From 2010 to 2014 she served as the curator of exhibitions and programs at the Mexic-Arte Museum in Austin, Texas. Her recent projects include the co-founding of ChingoZine, a Latino art zine and Chingolandia, a Latino designer toy line as part of her Latino art collective, Puro Chingón Collective, LLC. Zapata has curated over 30 exhibitions at the Mexic-Arte Museum and other Texas institutions on subjects such as the commercialization of the Day of the Dead holiday, Mexican dance masks, Contemporary Chicano art, lucha libre in popular culture and more. Her most recent publication acted as the main catalog essay for Margarita Cabrera’s Uprooted Dreams, a recent Austin Art in Public Places installation using Oaxacan woodcarving to discuss cultural displacement. Her research interests include curatorial methodologies of identity-based exhibitions, Texas Neo-Chicanoism, exhibition design and people-of-color zines and designer toys. For contact and further information please see her website.

  • Danya Epstein


    Danya Epstein is a first year PhD student at SMU in the RASC/a: Rhetorics of Art, Space and Culture Program in Art History. She received her AB in French from Princeton University and her MA in art history from Arizona State University, where she wrote her MA thesis on anatomical distortions in the work of JAD Ingres. A former naturopathic physician, Danya now brings her medical eye to the study of 18th and 19th century French art, with special interests in art and science, representations of the body and pathology, medical museums, and anatomical models.

  • Jamie Teich


    Jamie Teich is a doctoral student focusing on the art of Spain, medieval to early modern, with a growing interest in the history of Latin American art. Her research interests include performance, film theory, artists’ techniques, relics, textiles and bodies in space and in relation to architecture. Jamie received a Master’s in art history from Tufts University where she wrote a qualifying paper on a Romanesque church in Catalonia and another on an unpublished medieval Armenian manuscript page recently acquired by the Armenian Library and Museum in Massachusetts. She also received a Bachelor’s in theater, from Hunter College in New York, where she designed costumes for many theatrical productions between off-Broadway Shakespeare and Fringe Festival circuses. Before coming to Southern Methodist University she worked at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston in the curatorial, education, and conservation departments. She is currently curatorial assistant to Zahira Véliz Bomford, who acts as the curator for the Apelles Collection, based in Chile and London, and is senior paintings conservation at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. The collection is comprised mostly of Golden Age Spanish drawings.

  • Joseph Hartman


    Joe Hartman is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Southern Methodist University’s Rhetorics of Art, Space, and Culture program (RASC/a). He specializes in the history of Latin American art and architecture with an emphasis on the spatial and visual cultures of Cuba and the Caribbean. Hartman has published articles and reviews in The Journal for the Society of Architectural Historians; The Middle Ground Journal; Hemisphere: Visual Cultures of the Americas; and Athanor. He has presented his findings at the College Arts Association; Harvard University; El Museo del Barrio; and the Universitat de Barcelona, among others. In 2011, Hartman graduated with a Master’s in art history from the University of North Texas, where he wrote his thesis on the Afro-Cuban religious reception of urban spaces in Havana, Cuba. There, he also pursued a secondary focus in medieval material culture of the Mediterranean. Hartman’s dissertation, tentatively titled “Modern Dreams: Image, Space, and Politics in Machado’s Cuba, 1925-1933,” examines how civic environments constructed during the regime of Cuban President Gerardo Machado entwine themselves in the practices of art, politics, and daily life. Hartman currently resides in Dallas with his wife, toddler and cat.

  • Julie Borger


    Julie Borger is a second year MA student concentrating on late medieval art and architecture in England and France. Her current research interests include beasts, hybrid creatures, and representations of vice in architectural sculpture and illuminated manuscripts. After studying for two years at the American University of Paris, she received her BA in Art History from the College of Visual Arts and Design at the University of North Texas (UNT) in 2010. Her undergraduate thesis, “Goya’s Los Caprichos: An Enlightened Bestiary,” was published in the 2011 edition of the Eagle Feather, and was subsequently presented at two undergraduate symposia. Julie’s MA thesis will focus on the thirteenth-century bestial sculptures of York Minster’s chapter house.

  • Lauren Richman


    Lauren Richman is a third year doctoral candidate focusing on modern and contemporary art, photography and film of post-WWII Europe and North America.  Her research interests include the play and historical aberrations of violence, the intersections between art and visual mass culture, and studies of security, surveillance and political propaganda. Lauren received her B.A. in art history (2011) from Vanderbilt University and her M.A. in the same subject from SMU (2013); her thesis is titled “Perform, Cough, Critique: Christian Boltanski’s Cinematic Tactics in 1969.” The first recipient of the Gayle and Paul Stoffel Doctoral Fellowship in RASC/a, Lauren completed a specially designed year of coursework in 2013-14 with leading scholars in her field under the guidance of her advisor, Assistant Professor of Art History Eric Stryker. This included a  fall 2013 residence at the Courtauld Institute of Art in London under the mentorship of Julian Stallabrass and Sarah Wilson as well as independent research and coursework at Berlin’s Freie and Humboldt Universities through summer 2014.

  • Lucy McGuigan


    Lucy McGuigan is a second-year Masters student in the Department of Art History. She received her B.A. in Sociology with minors in Art History and English from the University of Pennsylvania in 2011, writing her undergraduate thesis on concepts of authenticity and appropriation in Philadelphia’s graffiti culture. After graduating, she served as a Teach for America Corps Member in the Greater New Orleans Region, teaching Algebra II in Chalmette, LA for two years. Her additional professional experience includes work as an Assessor of Classroom Effectiveness for The New Teacher Project, Graphic Designer and Production Manager for the Dallas Mexican American Historical League and Dallas Jewish Historical Society’s 2014 exhibition “Uptown’s Pike Park: Little Jerusalem to Little Mexico, 100 Years of Settlement” at the Latino Cultural Center, and internships in the Education Department of the Guggenheim Museum and the Curatorial Department of the Dallas Museum of Art.

    Her primary areas of interest are 17th century Flemish and Dutch painting and 1960s sculpture, but she is interested broadly in phenomenology, iconographic approaches that consider the appearance of formal elements outside of the “fine arts,” and works that self-consciously draw attention to their own artifice and thematize the frame as boundary between representation and reality. Her M.A. thesis will examine three “wall of treasures” paintings by Frans Francken II that contain through-view scenes of onocephalic iconoclasts.

  • Mariana Westphalen Von Hartenthal


    Mariana von Hartenthal is from Curitiba, a city in the South of Brazil. She studied Architecture and Urban Planning as an undergrad; shortly after she graduated she went to England where she took an MA in Museum Studies at the University of Southampton. Later on, she took another Master’s, this time in the area of Technology and Interaction (at the Federal University for Technology – Paraná, Brazil), which allowed her to research the way we perceive and interact with space, a longstanding interest of hers. While doing research for her MA thesis, she realized that some remarkable aspects of the interplay between people and space were first investigated by artists, which is how she arrived at studying art history. Although she did not follow an orthodox path in her academic career, she is happy to say that this has not been a problem here at RASC/a -- quite the opposite. Faculty members and colleagues are open to hearing about different perspectives, which is one of the aspects that make the program so exciting. Here, she feels encouraged to pursue her main research goal: the role of art in our understanding and construction of urban space, especially focusing on Latin American cities of the 20th century.

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