Current faculty news


Our faculty have been busy! Read here to find out more about their recent projects, awards, exhibitions, and publications. 

William Bennett exhibited works at Teeny Tiny Trifecta in Charlottesville’s Second Street Gallery this September (with Akemi Ohira). His Sculpture, The Thomas Hughes/Thomas Jefferson Navigator is being installed in the Ruffin courtyard for engineering tests prior to being installed elsewhere on Grounds in spring 2021. His work Loomings was installed at Les Yeux du Monde Gallery for the gallery’s 2019 summer sculpture show. During the COVID-19 lockdown, he has been working on a series of bronze amulets in his home studio. 


Sarah Betzer spent her 2018-19 sabbatical year based in New York, where she was a Visiting Scholar at Columbia, and Cambridge (UK), where she thoroughly enjoyed her period as Thomas Jefferson Visiting Fellow at Downing College. Her book, Animating the Antique: Sculptural Encounter in the Age of Aesthetic Theory, forthcoming from Penn State University Press, was awarded a Millard Meiss Publication Grant from the College Art Association. Her review of Patricia Lee Rubin's Seen from Behind: Perspectives on the Male Body and Renaissance Art was published in the Burlington Magazine, and an essay on Thomas Patch, Horace Walpole and queer complicity is forthcoming in Art History. Since 2016, she has served as Co-Director of the College Fellows Program and Engagements Curriculum–fundamental elements of UVA's first broad-scale reimagination of the place of the liberal arts in the undergraduate experience in over forty years. This past October, she was delighted by the vote of the faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences to adopt the new College Curriculum for all entering students. Spring and summer 2020 were capped by the graduation of PhD advisees Liz Doe Stone and Alicia Caticha.  


Amy Chan presented a solo exhibition Field of Play: Paintings by Amy Chan in September 2018 at the Page Bond Gallery, Richmond VA. She has exhibited in group shows including Glow-Glimmer-Sparkle-Shine (Dec. 2017-Jan. 2018) at the Page Bond Gallery and Private Eyes at Mountain Gallery, Brooklyn NY (April 2018). She serves as a Grant Juror for the National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, DC. 


Federico Cuatlacuatl’s most recent collaborative short film Tsenacommacah was released in August 2020, with an anticipated premiere at the 2020 Pocahontas Reframed Film Festival. In spring 2019, he released his short experimental documentary film titled Coapan En Espera which has been screened at numerous film festivals, including: San Diego Latino Film Festival; Latin American Studies Association Film Festival; International Film Festival of the Caribbean Sea; International Film Festival para una Cultura de Paz; Oaxaca Film Festival; the Seattle Latino Film Festival; Quetzalcoatl Indigenous Film Festival; Native Crossroads Film Festival at the University of Oklahoma; and the national documentary film series of Ambulante Coordenadas, Puebla, Mexico. He continues his ongoing project Tiemperos Del Antropoceno (Timekeepers of the Anthropocene) with multimedia installations and film productions. This project was selected to be featured in The Immigrant Artist Biennial, October 2020 in New York. Tiemperos Del Antropoceno was invited to participate in a group exhibition in spring 2021 titled Kixpatla, hosted by the Antiguo Colegio de San Ildefonso, Mexico City. Kixpatla brings contemporary North American Indigenous artists in conversation with the Nahua kixpatla concept of looking inward at one’s many evolving selves. The Rasquache Artist Residency, directed by Federico, was invited to a group exhibition in March 2020 titled Beyond The World’s End, hosted by the Museum of Art and History, Santa Cruz. Until November 14, 2020, his exhibition Papalotes en Resistencia is on view at Charlottesville’s Second Street Gallery


In 2019, Anastasia Dakouri-Hild launched a 3-year archaeological reconnaissance survey at ancient Aphidna near Athens, Greece, in collaboration with the Greek Ministry of Culture and the Irish Institute for Hellenic Studies at Athens. The field team consists of several UVA undergraduate and graduate students from Art, Architecture, Classics, Archaeology and Anthropology. To support the fieldwork, she received grants from UVA’s Center for Global Inquiry and Innovation, 4-VA, and the Institute for Aegean Prehistory. She received the Archaeological Institute of America's Award Outstanding Work in Digital Archaeology on behalf of her team in connection with the Flowerdew Hundred Project. She gave invited public lectures at the Institut für Ur- und Frühgeschichte und Vorderasiatische Archäologie at Heidelberg University (2020), the Historical Archives of the Greek Archaeological Service at Athens (2019), and several other workshops and conference papers. In 2017 she published Public Archaeologies of the Ancient Mediterranean, a special issue of the Journal of Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology and Heritage Studies


Francesca Fiorani’s new book, The Shadow Drawing: How Science Taught Leonardo How to Paint, Has been published. She also recently published her essay “Kenneth Clark's Leonardo” in the edited volume Leonardo in Britain: Collections and Reception (2019). She participated in a round table at the Uffizi in Florence on “Leonardo da Vinci and the Search for His ‘Battle of Anghiari’” (2020), spoke on Leonardo’s Treatise on Painting at the Accademia di San Luca in Rome (2019), and has delivered lectures on Leonardo and Optics at Georgetown University (2018), the University of Rome ‘La Sapienza’ (2019), and at the Politecnico di Torino (2019). For the 2018 CAA conference she organized two sessions on “Italian Renaissance Art in the Age of Leonardo”. She was a member of the Public Voices Program, The OpEd Project at UVA in 2018-19 (read the UVA Today article). She also has been the faculty leader of two UVA Cavalier Travel trips in 2019, one to Normandy and one to Egypt. Francesca is currently redesigning the Italian Renaissance survey into a class on the Global Renaissance that looks at Italy in the context of Europe and the Mediterranean as well as in relation to Africa, Asia and the Americas. 


In August 2018, Larry Goedde stepped down as department chair and returned to full-time teaching. He most recently researched, organized, and wrote up an exhibition of Northern Renaissance paintings and prints drawn from a South Carolina collection for the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, SC. Charleston Collects: Devotion and Fantasy, Witchcraft and the World's End opened on October 9th, 2020 and will be on view until June 27, 2021.


At The Fralin Museum of Art, Adriana Greci Green curated the exhibition Reflections: Native Art Across Generations (2018), which brought together historic Native American art with work of distinguished contemporary Native American artists. In summer 2018 she led students as they co-curated Beyond Feasting: A Window Into Ancient MesoAmerica, featuring pre-Colombian art from The Fralin’s collection. She also directed a collaborative 3D scanning project of Mesoamerican objects in the collection. Further afield, she served on the Native Exhibition Advisory Board for the groundbreaking touring exhibition Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists (2019-2020). In fall 2019, she was consultant and co-organizer of the basket component for Native Women Making History, a workshop, public program and publication developed with Hopi and Anishinaabe artists in collaboration with National Museum of Natural History and National Museum of the American Indian. She is also the lead ethnographer for Native Textiles of the Chesapeake, a grant-funded interdisciplinary research project investigating Indigenous archaeological and museum textile artifacts recovered from the Coastal Plain of Virginia from c. 1600-1800 C.E. Her book Seeing America: Native Artists of North America (co-edited with Tricia Bloom) was published in 2019, and in winter 2020 she published “Mazinibaganjigan: Pictures Bitten on Bark” in First American Art Magazine. She has also contributed catalog entries and essays, including to the exhibition catalog for Hearts of Our People.  


Carmenita Higginbotham served as Chair of the art department from August 2018 to August 2020. She continues her work on notions of the city, on race and American art, and on popular visual culture and film, including making an appearance as a featured scholar on the CNN documentary The Movies (2019). In August, she became Dean of the VCU School of the Arts. We wish her many congratulations on this well-deserved position!  


Megan Marlatt’s work has expanded in recent years from painting to mask-making and performance, and in 2018 she founded the artist collective “The Big Head Brigade”. Since her Fulbright U.S. Scholar Grant for study in Belgium in spring 2018, she has produced a series of big head masks of the Belgian artist James Ensor. She exhibited at the July 2018 Smithsonian Folklife Festival, as featured in “Here Comes the Big Head Brigade!”, Smithsonian Folklife Festival Blog. Her Critics at Large, Roberta Smith big head was featured in an interview with Roberta Smith and Jerry Saltz in Suddeutsche Zietung Magazin in 2019. She was the subject of a Daily Progress feature in early 2020 and an April 2020 article in Artillery Magazine: “Virtual Studio Visit: Megan Marlatt”. She is on leave for 2020-2021.  


Giulia Paoletti is the recipient of the 2020-2021 ACLS/Getty Fellowship during which she will be in Italy and Senegal to complete her book manuscript entitled Objects of Betrayal: Photography and Visuality in Senegal. Her book project was supported in 2019-2020 by a Mellon Humanities Fellowship from UVA’s Institute of Humanities and Global Cultures. She was also awarded a short-term residency at the Academy of Global Humanities and Critical Theory, University of Bologna. She most recently has published “Contre la mimèsis: Léopold Sédar Senghor sur l’art et la photographie africains” in the edited volume Déborder la négritude. Arts, politique et société à Dakar (2020), and has forthcoming chapters in Roots and Wings: 50 Years of Contemporary Senegalese Art (1965 to 2018) and Pride: Barber Shop in West Africa. Giulia teaches courses on African art, and in particular on the history of photography in Africa. 


After publishing her first monograph (Everyday Luxuries: Art and Objects in Ottoman Istanbul, 1600-1800, 2016) which looked at how daily life in the early modern city was shaped by goods from spoons to carpets to books, Amanda Phillips has returned attention to textiles. She divided 2017-18 between a National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship in Istanbul and a British Academy Visiting fellowship at the Center for Anatolian and East Mediterranean Studies at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. Her projects focused on the expanded topographies of Ottoman textiles—from the Balkans to Bengal—over the long durée. This work also benefited from a short-term residential fellowship at the Gulbenkian Museum in Lisbon, and funding from the Barakat Trust and Pasold Fund. Her second monograph, Sea Change: Ottoman Textiles between the Mediterranean and Indian Ocean, is due out in early 2021. Two ongoing projects focus on textiles and other material culture in the Balkans and on global floral fashion in the eighteenth century. Amanda is teaching in the College’s new Engagements Curriculum, and continues to organize the Art Department lecture series. 


Eric Ramírez-Weaver served as Director of the Medieval Studies Program from 2017-2020. Since his 2017 book A Saving Science: Capturing the Heavens in Carolingian Manuscripts, he has published “Permeable Membranes: Classical Astronomy, Pan-Mediterranean Iconography, and Their Carolingian Appropriation in the Leiden Aratea” in The Medieval Globe (2019); and “Bohemian King Wenceslas IV’s Copy of the Alfonsine Tables and Their Place within His Astronomical and Astrological Corpus” in the edited volume Analysing the Corpus of Alfonsine Texts (2020). He has presented his research at a number of invited talks and conference papers, including the Medieval Academy Annual Meeting (2019), the International Medieval Conference, Leeds, UK (2018), and Fordham University’s 4th Biduum Latinum (2018). He was scheduled to present papers in summer 2020 at the International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, and the International Medieval Congress, Leeds, for which he also co-organized a triple conference session. He recently has collaborated with the Charlottesville Ballet to create “Astrolabium”, and he choreographed the original interactive dance “Solomon’s Knot” for Charlottesville’s Unity Days.

Lisa Reilly was recently promoted to Full Professor. Her latest books include The Invention of Norman Visual Culture: Art, Politics & Dynastic Ambition (2020) and Skyscraper Gothic: Medieval Style and Modernist Buildings (2017, co-edited with Kevin Murphy). She is currently working with art department alumna Mary B. Shepard on a volume about stained glass at the parish church of St. Michael le Belfrey, York, for the Corpus Vitrearum series. Lisa and Matthew McLendon, Director of The Fralin Museum of Art, are partnering on a new course entitled Strategies of Collecting, which will take students through the process of selecting and recommending objects for purchase by The Fralin. They were awarded a grant from the Jefferson Trust to develop the course, which will be taught next year. Lisa has also received two National Endowment for the Humanities grants and directed two NEH summer institutes for K-12 teachers in 2018 and 2019 on the topic of “Thomas Jefferson: The Public and Private Worlds of Monticello and the University of Virginia”.  


Christa Robbins’s new book, Artist as Author: Action and Intent in Late-Modernist American Painting (University of Chicago Press), is soon to be released. She also has two forthcoming publications: “Kenneth Noland’s Reichian Paintings” in the Zeitschrift für Ästhetik und Allgemeine Kunstwissenschaft special volume on Sublimation: Redefining Materiality in Art after Modernism; and “The Anthropomorphic Sixties” in The Human: Oxford Philosophical Concepts Series. Recently she published a review of Donald Judd at the Museum of Modern Art in Art in America (May 2020), and “The Sensibility of Michael Fried” in Criticism: A Quarterly for Literature and the Arts (Fall 2018). Christa was awarded a UVA Arts Fellowship in 2017-2018 to support research and course development. She serves as Director of Undergraduate Programs.  


While Dylan Rogers could not join the Vulci-3000 excavation team in Italy this past summer, he has been able to complete other research projects on Roman baths, the social aspects of Greek water collection, the 86 BCE siege of Athens by the Roman general Sulla, the Late Antique fountains of Corinth (Greece), the mosaics of Antioch, and reconstructing rituals in sacred water contexts throughout the Roman world—all of which will appear in print over the course of the next year. He recently gave lectures at the College of William and Mary and the University of Richmond on his research into the sensorial experience of fountains in Roman Greece, which will appear in the January 2021 American Journal of Archaeology. In 2020, he published "Aquatic Pasts & the Watery Present: Memory and the Fora of Rome" in the edited volume The Power of Urban Water, and "The Hanging Garlands of Pompeii: Mimetic Acts of Ancient Lived Religion" in the journal Arts. The latter article formed the basis of a discussion Dylan had with the podcast of the Australia-based Garland Magazine on flowers and religious experience. He is co-editor of The Cambridge Companion to Ancient Athens, a 33-chapter volume that explores the city's topography, monuments, inhabitants, and cultural institutions, due out in January 2021. Closer to home, and of particular relevance to this department, Dylan is co-editing A Quaint & Curious Volume: Essays in Honor of John J. Dobbins, forthcoming from Oxford’s Archaeopress. Dylan has written for the UVA Alumni Association's blog, most recently "The Lawn and Roman Architecture." He is excited to share different avenues of inquiry into the ancient Mediterranean world, especially through new courses such as Sex and the Ancient City; Painting in the Ancient Mediterranean World; Archaeology of Destruction; Pompeii: Life in an Ancient Roman City; and Water, Architecture, and the Senses. Currently he is teaching Art and Power, which you can follow on Instagram


Henry Skerritt curated the exhibitions The Inside World: Contemporary Aboriginal Australian Memorial Poles (Nevada Museum of Art and touring, including at The Fralin Museum of Art, 2019-20), A World of Relations (Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth Collection, 2019), The Mysteries that Remain: Mick Namarari Tjapaltjarri (Kluge-Ruhe 2017 and touring), and Marking the Infinite: Contemporary Women Artists from Aboriginal Australia (Nevada Museum of Art and touring, 2016-19). Between 2017 and 2020 he also co-curated 17 exhibitions at Kluge-Ruhe, assisting artists, communities and students to realize their curatorial visions. He is currently working on the major touring exhibition Maḏayin: Eight Decades of Aboriginal Australian Bark Painting from Yirrkala, which will open at the Hood Museum of Art on September 3, 2022. The exhibition has received grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Jefferson Trust, the Commonwealth Government of Australia, and the Australia Council for the Arts, and will be accompanied by a major catalog, of which he is co-editor. He also edited the exhibition catalog for The Inside World: Contemporary Aboriginal Australian Memorial Poles (2019) and for Beyond Dreamings: The Rise of Indigenous Australian Art in the United States (2019), and has contributed a number of catalog essays and a book chapter to other volumes. He chaired the panel “Mining the Colonial Imaginary" at the 2020 College Art Association conference, and has presented papers at CAA conferences from 2017-2019. In 2018 he convened the symposium Oceans of Exchange; Art, Indigeneity and the 21st Century Museum, and in 2019 co-convened (with Margo Smith) the symposium Beyond Dreamings, both at UVA. He has given talks at, among other places, the Phillips Collection, The Clark Art Institute, and the Gagosian galleries in New York and Los Angeles. 


Tyler Jo Smith was recently promoted to Full Professor and continues to serve as Director of the Interdisciplinary Archaeology Program at UVA. Since 2017 she has been a Visiting Scholar at L’École des hautes études en sciences sociales in Paris, and both a Senior Associate Member and the Elizabeth A. Whitehead Professor at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens (2018-2019). While on leave and during her time in Athens, she completed a book entitled Religion in the Art of Archaic and Classical Greece (forthcoming 2021), as well as articles on the topics of dance, religion, ancient animals, and the archaeology of southwest Anatolia. She is currently writing a book on the collection of Greek vases in Sir John Soane's Museum, London, a project for which she received research grants from the Society of Antiquaries of London and the Paul Mellon Centre for the Study of British Art. She has presented invited lectures and seminars at multiple venues in the US and worldwide, including, this summer (via Zoom) "Sparta Live" by invitation of the University of Nottingham, UK and the Municipality of Sparta, Greece, and "Delphic Preview: Festival of the Muses" organized by Harvard University. With Art Department graduate student alumni Ethan Gruber and Renee Gondek, Tyler Jo continues to manage, a Linked Open Data project for ancient Greek pottery, currently funded by a Digital Advancement Grant from the NEH. This collaborative project with international partners employs and trains UVA students (past and present) in an important growing area of Digital Humanities. She continues to serve as a member of the Managing Committee of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, on the Editorial Advisory Board of the American Journal of Archaeology, as an editor of the Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum, on the Board of Directors of the American Research Institute in Turkey, and on the Foundation Board of the British School at Athens. 


David Summers, Professor Emeritus, recently exhibited recent paintings at Les Yeux Du Monde Gallery in Charlottesville, VA. David Summers: Nothing but Light which closed on October 5, 2020. The catalogue is available online


Dorothy Wong continues to serve as the Director of the East Asia Center at UVA, and she has been promoted to Full Professor. In 2018 she published her book Buddhist Pilgrim-Monks as Agents of Cultural and Artistic Transmission: The International Buddhist Art Style in East Asia, ca. 645–770. She is editor of and contributor to Miraculous Images in Asian Traditions, a thematic volume in the journal Ars Orientalis, forthcoming in 2020. Other recent publications include “Colossal Buddha Statues along the Silk Road” in Acta Via Serica  (2019); “Buddhist Transformation of Chang’an’s Architectural and Cultural Landscape, ca. 650–720” in the edited volume Early Medieval North China: Archaeological and Textual Evidence (2019); and the essay “Jianzhen/Ganjin” in Brill’s Encyclopedia of Buddhism (2019). In summer 2019, she participated in a seminar visiting monastery sites in Tibet. 


In addition to serving as the Director of Studio Art, William Wylie actively continues to exhibit his work. In 2020, he had two solo exhibitions: Structures and Space, Blitz Gallery, Tokyo; and The Possibility of Ruins, Page Bond Gallery, Richmond. Over 2018-2019, his exhibition Pompeii Archive was shown at Colorado State University’s Museum of Art, Vanderbilt University Fine Arts Gallery, Wesleyan University, and UVA’s Fralin Museum of Art. The book arising from this project, Pompeii Archive (Yale University Press, 2018), received a Notable Book of 2018 Award from Photo District News and the work was featured in an exhibition at Yale University Art Gallery: Pompeii: Photographs and Fragments. Other solo or paired exhibitions include The Edge of Space, Page Bond Gallery, 2019; THIS:THAT, with Corey Drieth, Ruffin Gallery, UVA, 2019; Shadows of the Future Anterior: William Wylie/Lewis Baltz, Trinity University, 2018; and William Wylie: Recent Work, University of Vermont, 2018. His work was reviewed in the Boston Globe, in Photo District News, and the journal History of Photography. He has held artist residencies at the University of Vienna, Trinity University, Colorado State University, and Montana State University, among others, and has given several invited talks. His short film Pilgrim was screened in 2019 at the Virginia Film Festival. A new book, A Prairie Season, will be out this winter.