Betty Livingston Adams holds a Ph.D. in American Studies from Yale University and a Master of Divinity degree from Drew University. Her scholarship explores nineteenth- and twentieth-century African American/American religious and social history through the lens of gender, race, and class. Her current book projects include “Work and Serve the Hour”: The Politics of African American Women’s Christian Activism in a Northern “Ideal Suburb,” 1898-1945 (New York University Press, forthcoming). Adams is a recipient of numerous fellowships and awards, including a post-doctoral fellowship at Rutgers University and a Ford Foundation Doctoral Fellowship. She was a Charlotte Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation finalist and a Global Scholar at the Rutgers Institute for Research on Women (IRW). She is currently a Fellow and Visiting Faculty at the Rutgers Center for Historical Analysis (RCHA). In addition to serving as an Associate Minister, Adams also serves on the Executive Board of the Theological School Alumni/ae Association, Drew University.
Horace D. Ballard, Jr. is a second-year doctoral student at Brown University in the programs of Public Humanities, History of Art, and American Studies. He is editor of the Artemis Review, a magazine and blog dedicated to the history of creativity in America. He received bachelor degrees in Literature and American Studies from the University of Virginia and his M.A. in Religion and Visual Culture from the Institute of Sacred Music [ISM] and Yale Divinity School. His academic interests include: the visual cultures of religion, the history of romanticism, the influence of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century European aesthetics on American art, and the Beat Generation. In 2010, Horace was one of the student curators of Embodied: Black Identities in American Art from the Yale University Art Gallery. He also served as associate guest curator for Incarnations: Black Spiritualities in American Art from the Steele Collection at the ISM. Horace presently serves on the curatorial team for the 2013 exhibition, W.E.B. Du Bois in Our Time, at the Museum of Contemporary Art at UMass Amherst. He currently works as the Museum Educator for School Programs at the RISD Museum of Art.
Omer Bajwa is the "Coordinator of Muslim Life" in the Chaplain's Office at Yale. He earned his Graduate Certificate in Islamic Chaplaincy from Hartford Seminary, and he has been engaged in religious service, social activism, and educational outreach for the past nine years. Before coming to Yale, he served as the Interim Muslim Chaplain at Cornell University from 2007-2008. He holds an M.A. in Near Eastern Studies, with a specialization in Islamic Studies, and an M.S. in Communication from Cornell University; his BA is in English Literature and Rhetoric from Binghamton University. His interests include Islam in the United States, multifaith activities, Islam and the global media, and transnational religious and intellectual networks.
AA Bronson has worked as an artist, curator, and writer for more than 40 years, focusing on issues of collaboration, mass culture, consumerism, HIV/AIDS, healing and shamanism. From 1967 through 1994 he worked as part of the artists' group General Idea. Together they had more than 100 solo exhibitions worldwide, and their work is in the collections of major museums such as the Whitney Museum, SFMoMA, and the Museum of Modern Art. From 1987 through 1994 they produced more than 70 temporary public artworks on the subject of AIDS: currently their AIDS wallpaper is installed in the Permanent Collection at MoMA. Since 1994, as a solo artist, he has turned his focus to the subject of loss and mourning, and then to trauma and healing, both in his art and in his practice as a healer. Most recently, his subject is queer community and queer history. He has taught at UCLA, the University of Toronto, and The Yale School of Art. He has received many international awards, holds two honorary doctorates, and is an Officer of the Order of Canada. Most recently he was named a Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters by France. He is a founder and Co-Director of the Institute for Art, Religion, and Social Justice at Union Theological Seminary in New York City.
James Clifton has been the Director of the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation and Curator in Renaissance and Baroque Painting at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, since 1994. He has published essays on early modern Italian, German, and Netherlandish art. He curated exhibitions of prints from the collection of the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation: A Portrait of the Artist, 1525-1825 (Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University, Ithaca, 2005), and The Plains of Mars: European War Prints, 1500-1825, with Leslie M. Scattone (Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 2009). He is currently co-curating the exhibition, Elegance and Refinement: The Still-Life Paintings of Willem van Aelst, with Tanya Paul and Arthur Wheelock (Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, 2012). His interest in art and religion in the early modern period led him to curate the exhibition, The Body of Christ in the Art of Europe and New Spain, 1150-1800 (Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 1997), and co-curate the exhibition, Scripture for the Eyes: Bible Illustration in Netherlandish Prints of the Sixteenth Century, with Walter S. Melion (Museum of Biblical Art, New York, and Michael C. Carlos Museum, Emory University, Atlanta, 2009). He has published several studies on religious prints in the Netherlands in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. He was the chief writer for the documentary films, The Face: Jesus in Art (2001), and Picturing Mary (2006), produced by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. His musings on museums, museum visitors, and religious art in the wake of the Body of Christ exhibition – “Truly a worship experience? Christian art in secular museums” – was published in the Autumn 2007 issue of Res.
Kati Curts is a doctoral student in American Religious History in the Religious Studies Department at Yale University. Her ongoing research interests include critical theories of religion, performance, and mediation; identity formation and religious, popular and consumer cultures in nineteenth- and twentieth-century America; and methods and practices of classification and collection in the study of religion. Curts received her M.A. in Religious Studies at New York University. Her thesis there examined the reproduction and transmission of memory and affect through material/visual activities and artifacts among contemporary evangelicals and institutions.
François de Menil, FAIA, LEED AP, established his architecture practice in 1991. The firm has provided architectural and interior design services for institutional, residential, retail and corporate office projects. De Menil began his career as a filmmaker, creating films on the sculptors Mark di Suvero, Jean Tinguely and Niki de Saint Phalle. It was this interest in three-dimensional forms that first drew him to architecture. In 1987 he received his Bachelor in Architecture degree from the Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture at the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. Prior to founding his own firm, de Menil worked in the offices of Richard Meier & Partners and Kohn Pedersen Fox. Francois de Menil’s architecture examines issues of social, historical and cultural context and transforms this research into a specific narrative related to the client, the site and the program presented. From this synthesis emerges a signature concept that informs the tectonics. From houses to institutional spaces to offices and retail shops, his work explores issues relating to how we live, work and experiences spirituality. Mr. de Menil’s work demonstrates a refined attention to materials and the art of construction. He elevates the humblest of materials to noble status, and his focus on detailing results in crisp lines and minimalist expression. Architecture is capable of shaping our urban fabric and affecting individual's lives. Public architecture, in particular, can shape the attitudes of an entire community, if not society as a whole. Architecture brings forth both the essence of place and of program, to project clarity of purpose and the relationship of the building to its community. Each opportunity to strengthen relationships within a community makes way for creating a better society. Building design requires the resolution of multiple challenges, many of which often appear to be mutually exclusive. It is the role of the architect to balance all the issues of site, program and budget and make choices that are in the best interest of the project. In the end, the building will speak for itself and the inherent wisdom of these choices will become clear.
Megan Doherty is Senior Jewish Fellow & Associate Rabbi at the Joseph Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale. Seattle native and graduate of The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington, Doherty finished her studies at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 2007, and promptly moved to Tel Aviv. While there, she served as a spiritual director in the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College’s Israel program, taught at the Institute for Overseas Leaders at Kiryat Moriah in Jerusalem, and was an active member and service leader at Kehillat Tiferet Shalom in Ramat Aviv. She came to Yale University in her current position in academic year 2010-2011.
Eduardo Fernández, S.J. is Associate Professor of Pastoral Theology and Ministry at the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley. He received his B.A. at Loyola University of the South; his M.A. at University of Texas at Austin, Department of Latin American Studies; his M.Div. at Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley; his S.T.L. and S.T.D. at Gregorian Pontifical University. He teaches such courses as Church, Mission and Cultures; Hispanic Theology Seminar; Hispanic Religious Expressions; and Mestizo Spirituality and Art. He specializes in Latino theology, Mexican and Southwestern history, social justice and inculturation and the celebration of the sacraments in multicultural contexts. In addition to teaching, Fernández recently served as president of the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of the United States (ACHTUS) and has authored several books, including La Vida Sacra: Contemporary Hispanic Sacramental Theology (Rowman and Littlefield, 2006) with James Empereur, S.J.; Mexican-American Catholics (Paulist Press, 2007); La Cosecha: Harvesting Contemporary U.S. Hispanic Theology (Collegeville: Michael Glazer, 2000); and U.S. Catholic Hispanic Trends and Works (University of Scranton Press, 2002) with Kenneth Davis and Veronica Mendez. He has also published articles for theological publications and collaborates with several local diocesan lay institutes. Fernández received the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of the United States Virgilio Elizondo Award.
Meredith J. Gill is a historian of Italian art and architecture from the late medieval era through the sixteenth century. She is Associate Professor of Art History and Archaeology at the University of Maryland. Her scholarly interests focus on the intersections of art and spirituality, with an emphasis on theology and philosophy. She is the author of Augustine in the Italian Renaissance: Art and Philosophy from Petrarch to Michelangelo (Cambridge University Press), and she has contributed chapters to Rome: Artistic Centers of the Italian Renaissance, ed. Marcia Hall (Cambridge University Press) and to The Renaissance World, ed. John Jeffries Martin (Routledge). She is a co-editor, with Karla Pollmann, of Augustine Beyond the Book (Brill), a collection of interdisciplinary studies on Augustine’s reception. Among forthcoming essays is her study of Guillaume d'Estouteville in Possessions: Renaissance Cardinals--Rights and Rituals, eds. Mary Hollingsworth and Carol M. Richardson (Penn State University Press) and her chapter on the humanist, Lorenzo Valla, and the idea of forgery in Revisioning High Renaissance Rome, ed. Jill Burke. She is completing Flights of Angels: The Order of Heaven in Medieval and Renaissance Italy. She has presented aspects of this project at recent conferences and invited talks. In her teaching, Gill also concentrates on interdisciplinary themes that address social history, the history of science, and gender in the visual arts. Her articles (appearing in Storia dell'Arte, Renaissance Quarterly, and Zeitschrift für Kunstgeschichte) have focused on French and Spanish patronage in Quattrocento Rome, and on architecture, church decoration, and funerary sculpture. She contributed articles to the Festschrifts of Richard Krautheimer and John Shearman, and was a co-editor of both volumes. She has been a Fellow at Villa I Tatti (The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies) and the National Humanities Center, and has been the recipient of a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Gill is a member of the advisory board for Renaissance Studies.
Zareena Grewal is an assistant professor in the departments of American Studies and Religious Studies and the Program in Ethnicity, Race and Migration at Yale University. She is the author of numerous articles and chapters on the intersections of race and religion in American Muslim communities and her forthcoming book explores the global religious networks that connect U.S. mosques to the intellectual centers of the Middle East. She has also produced and directed two documentary films for television, "By the Dawn's Early Light: Chris Jackson's Journey to Islam" (2004) and "Swahili Fighting Words" (2010).
Perin Gurel is Visiting Assistant Professor of American Studies at Dickinson College. She recently completed her Ph.D. in American Studies and in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Yale University. She holds a BA in English and American Studies from UC Berkeley. Her academic interests include comparative studies of gender and sexuality, representations of women and Islam, and the cultures of globalization, with special focus on the postwar United States and Near East. Her dissertation, “Wild Westernization: Gender, Sexuality, and the United States in Turkey,” focuses on the discourse of "westernization" in Turkey and its effects on international relations and gender and sexual rights movements. In 2010-2011 she was senior program associate for Women’s Islamic Initiative in Spirituality and Equality (WISE), a global program, social network, and grassroots social justice movement led by Muslim women. She has previously worked as a graduate associate for the Women, Religion, and Globalization Project at Yale, for which she co-taught a class on “Women, Religion, and Representation. She has presented and published papers on folklore and nationalism, Islam and the supernatural in Turkish women's fiction, and the feminist and queer movements in contemporary Turkey.
Selma Holo is the Director of University of Southern California’s Fisher Museum of Art. She is also the Founder and Director of the Dornsife College's International Museum Institute (IMI). The IMI is a think tank dedicated to international and interdisciplinary inquiries into the nature and future of the institution of the museum in society. Holo's most recent book, "Beyond the Turnstile: Making the Case for Museums and Sustainable Values", is a product of IMI workshops and presents a set of qualitative values (with a variety of texts with a panoply of perspectives on each value) that allows museum leaders to evaluate their work in the context of the most advanced ideas prevailing in the globalized museum world. With these values in mind museums gain the tools to argue persuasively for their indispensability to society. Conversely, should they find themselves not living up to the standards of these values, they gain the tools to argue better for what they need to do to, indeed, make themselves indispensable. Holo was one of the pioneers in the field of museum studies, developing a very successful graduate program that she ran for 25 years at USC. Her program trained museum curators, educators and administrators, many of whom went on to hold leadership positions at institutions such as the National Gallery of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Getty Museum and Getty Conservation Institute, as well as smaller museums throughout the country and internationally. Holo's other books and writings relate mostly to the role that museums play in the countries transitioning from authoritarian regimes to democracies, notably in Spain and Mexico. ("Beyond the Prado: Museums and Identity in Democratic Spain" and "Oaxaca at the Crossroads: Managing Memory, Negotiating Change). Before arriving at USC, Holo was curator of acquisitions at the Norton Simon Museum where she assisted Mr. Simon in building his stunning art collections. She holds a doctorate in Art History, specialized in Goya, and has written extensively on Spanish art and, of course, museology.
Graham Howes is Fellow Emeritus, Trinity Hall, University of Cambridge, a Trustee of Art and Christianity Enquiry (ACE) and formerly on the Advisory Board of Material Religion. During the past two decades his research has increasingly moved away from empirical studies within the sociology of religion, and more towards the relationship between religious, ’spiritual’, and aesthetic experience, especially, but not exclusively, within the Christian tradition. His publications include ’Theology and the Visual Arts’ in David Ford (ed), The Modern Theologians (1994), English Cathedrals and the Visual Arts: Patronage, Policies and Provision (London 2006), The Art of the Sacred –an Introduction to the Aesthetics of Art and Belief (London 2007),and ‘Christian Wisdom in the Visual Arts’ in Theology 114(3) 2011.
Paul Christopher Johnson is Professor (effective September 1, 2010) of History and at the Center for Afroamerican and African Studies at the University of Michigan, where he also serves as Director of the Doctoral Program in Anthropology and History. He is the author of Secrets, Gossip and Gods: The Transformation of Brazilian Candomblé (Oxford 2002), named best book in the analytical-descriptive category by the American Academy of Religion; and Diaspora Conversions: Black Carib Religion and the Recovery of Africa (California 2007), awarded the Wesley Logan Prize of the American Historical Association for the best book on African diaspora history. Along with editing a book entitled Occupied Lands, Owned Bodies: The Work of “Possession” in Black Atlantic Religions, he is working on a new project provisionally called Vanishing: “Religion” and the Purification of Spirits, on the genealogy of the idea of the possessed body in relation to questions of governance, slavery, and civil risk, for which he was awarded a Guggenheim award in 2008.
Dana E. Katz is Joshua C. Taylor Associate Professor of Art History and Humanities at Reed College, where she teaches courses related to Italian Renaissance art, early modern culture in Europe and the Americas, and art historical methodologies. Her research examines the relations and negotiations between Jewish cultural history and the visual culture of the Italian Renaissance. In her book The Jew in the Art of the Italian Renaissance (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008), she explores the politics of tolerance in the Italian courts through representations of the Jew in early modern painting and sculpture. The flourishing of the Renaissance did not end the social tensions between Christians and Jews, even in the so-called “tolerant” regions of southern Europe. Although Renaissance princes often favored Jewish settlement in their territories and supported civic policies of toleration, the art of the period reveals how symbolic violence targeted against local Jews entered into everyday life. The book exposes the role art played in deflecting violence against Jews to a symbolic status and the interrelations between protection and persecution in the early modern context. Whereas The Jew in the Art of the Italian Renaissance examines the dialogical relationship between violence and tolerance as represented in Renaissance art, her new project studies toleration and its boundaries, real and symbolic, within the architectural enclosures of the Venetian ghetto. On March 29, 1516, the Venetian Senate ordered all Jews residing in the city to move behind the walls of the ghetto. The mandate stipulated that the Jews would be watched two iron gates. In The Ghetto and the Gaze in Early Modern Venice, Katz explores the urban form of the Jewish ghetto in Venice from the sixteenth to the eighteenth century. Through details of construction and design, she deconstructs how the ghetto’s irregular fenestration patterns, uneven building heights, and unpunctured surrounding walls complement and contest Renaissance conceptions of space, surveillance, and ethnic enclosure.
Byron Kim was born in La Jolla, California in 1961, received a B.A. in English at Yale in 1983 and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 1986. Kim's large painting installation called "Synecdoche," which depicts human skin color was included in the 1993 Whitney Biennial. His solo museum exhibitions include "Matrix 125" at the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford (1994), "Grey-Green" at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, D.C. (1996) as well as "Threshold" a survey of Kim's work which was curated by Eugenie Tsai and originated at the Berkeley Art Museum in 2004 and has traveled to the Samsung Museum of Modern Art in Seoul, Korea, the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, the Weatherspoon Art Museum at the University of North Carolina in Greensboro, the Henry Art Gallery at the University of Washington in Seattle, and the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art. Among the awards Kim has received are The Louise Nevelson Award in Art from the American Academy of Arts and Letters (1993), the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Award (1994), the New York Foundation for the Arts Grant (1994), the National Endowment for the Arts Award (1995), the Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant (1997), and the Alpert Award in the Arts (2008). His work is included in the collections of Art Institute of Chicago, the Berkeley Art Museum, the Hirshhorn Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, the National Gallery of Art, the Wadsworth Athenaeum, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and others. Kim is represented by James Cohan Gallery in New York and PKM Gallery in Seoul, Korea.
Hwansoo Kim is Assistant Professor of Korean Buddhism and culture at Duke University. He received his Ph.D. in the colonial history of Korean and Japanese Buddhism from Harvard University in 2007. He has a BA in the history of East Asian Buddhism and Yogacara philosophy from Dongguk University in Seoul, Korea (1996) and received his master’s in Buddhism and the sociology and theory of religion at Harvard Divinity School (2002). Before joining Duke, he was a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard's Reischauer Institute (2007) and assistant professor at the University of Arizona (2008). Kim’s primary research concerns Korean Buddhism in the late nineteenth to the mid-twentieth centuries in the context of colonialism, imperialism, and modernity. His broader scholarship includes East Asian religions, the modernization of Buddhism, monasticism, clerical marriage, rituals, and ethics. In addition to being a scholar, he is also a Buddhist monk of 25 years in the Korean Buddhist tradition. Born in a small village temple in Korea, he was ordained at the age of sixteen. He served as a Buddhist army chaplain for three years followed by assisting in leading many Buddhist groups in universities and temples.
Frederick John Lamp is The Frances & Benjamin Benenson Foundation Curator of African Art at the Yale University Art Gallery. From 1981 to 2003, he was a curator at The Baltimore Museum of Art. He holds a Ph.D. in the History of Art from Yale University, 1982. He has conducted field research in Sierra Leone and Guinea, with fellowships from the Fulbright Scholar Award, the Smithsonian Institution, National Endowment for the Humanities, and others. His publications include Continuing Life Histories of African Art: The Collection of Charles B. Benenson at the Yale University Art Gallery (co-authored), 2012; Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin, (ed., special issue) 2005; See the Music, Hear the Dance: Rethinking Africa at The Baltimore Museum of Art, (ed.) 2004; Art of the Baga: A Drama of Cultural Reinvention, 1996; La Guinée et ses Heritages Culturels, 1992; with contributions to several books; and articles in African Arts, The Drama Review, and The Art Bulletin, among many others.
Gregory P. A. Levine received his B.A. from Oberlin College and PhD in the art history of Japan from Princeton University in 1997, joining the Department of History of Art at UC Berkeley that year. He has written and lectured on the art and architecture of the Japanese Zen Buddhist monastery Daitokuji, the modern construct of "Zen Art," cultures of exhibition and viewing in premodern and modern Japan, calligraphy connoisseurship and forgery, and the modern collecting and study of "Buddhist art." Among his recent published writings is "Two (or More) Truths: Reconsidering Zen Art in the West," in Awakenings: Zen Figure Painting in Medieval Japan (2007) and Daitokuji: The Visual Cultures of a Zen Monastery (2005). His current research focuses on fragments of Buddhist images within devotional and modern contexts in Asia and the West. A portion of this research will appear in an essay "Malraux's Buddha Heads" in The Blackwell Companion to Asian Art (2010). He is also at work on a book, A Long Strange Journey: Zen Art in the Modern Imagination, and an essay, "Silenced by Aesthetics? A Conjectural Poetics of Art History and Ecology." With Yukio Lippit, he is co-editor of the volume Re-Presenting Emptiness: Essays on Zen and Art (Princeton University Press, 2009). He has taught graduate seminars on topics such as Daitokuji; Kan'ei-era visual culture; problems of portraiture in Japan; shohekiga; art forgery; iconoclasm; and fragments in art history. In fall 2008 he will lead the Judith Stronach Graduate Travel Seminar in Art History in Japan. His undergraduate teaching includes surveys of the art and architecture of Japan; Buddhist art and architecture; and Painting and Print Cultures in Japan as well as seminars on Zen painting and calligraphy; Buddhist images in the modern/contemporary world; and the collecting of Japanese art in the West. He currently advises doctoral dissertations on topics including the Material and Visual Cultures of Sen no Rikyu; Visual Cultures of the Buddhist convent Hokyoji; and the Gutai collective.
Kathryn Lofton is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies and American Studies at Yale University. She taught at Reed College in Portland, Oregon, and Indiana University, Bloomington, before arriving at Yale University in 2009 after a yearlong fellowship with the Center for the Study of Religion at Princeton University. As a scholar of religion and American culture, her research investigates the intersection of religious innovation, consumer culture, and the modern imaginary; it thus focuses on the inseparability of religion and its cultural constructions and, likewise, the extent to which culture itself is embedded in religious histories. A specialist in nineteenth- and twentieth-century U.S. religious history, she has published on the evangelical preacher, theological modernism, civil rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer, soap advertisements, and the religious meanings of Oprah Winfrey's multimedia empire. Her first book is Oprah: The Gospel of an Icon (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2011). She is currently working on her second monograph; this manuscript examines sexuality within early twentieth century Protestant fundamentalism.
Alma López was born in Los Mochis, Sinaloa, and raised in East Los Angeles. She got her MFA from the University of California, Irvine in 1995. She has taught as a Visiting Artist in departments of Chicana/o Studies and LGBTQ Studies at UC Riverside, UC Irvine, UC Santa Barbara, UCLA, and Loyola Marymount University. Her work has been exhibited in museums and community organizations all over California and the Southwest and nationwide, as well as internationally in Mexico City, Ciudad Juárez, Naples, Italy and Cork County, Ireland. Through her work, her activism, and her popular website, López upholds her position as one of the most visible and cutting-edge Chicana feminist activist artists in the country.
Ashley Makar is a writer and M.A. student in Religion and the Arts in the Institute of Sacred Music at Yale Divinity School, where her academic work focuses on Biblical images in literature. She is also continuing research on Biblical narrative among Southern Sudanese refugees who have migrated to Egypt and, most recently, to Israel, where she will travel this summer on a Jerome Foundation study grant. She began this research for a literary ethnography of Sudanese refugees in Cairo, which was her thesis project for her joint M.A. in Middle East Studies and Journalism from New York University, where she focused on anthropology and Arabic language. She plans to continue her study of Arabic, in preparation for literary translation work. She is also a contributing co-editor to Killing the Buddha, an online literary magazine of religion writing. Vocationally, she plans to bring her writing affinities to communities that have scarce opportunities to engage in the literary arts.
Vasileios Marinis is assistant professor of Christian art and architecture at the Yale Institute of Sacred Music and the Divinity School. Marinis’s research focuses on the art and architecture of early Christianity and the Middle Ages. He has a particular interest in the ritual, liturgical arts, representations of women and children, as well as the material culture of these periods. Marinis has been the recipient of numerous grants and fellowships including the Aidan Kavanagh Prize for Outstanding Scholarship at Yale and the S.C. and P.C. Coleman Senior Fellowship at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He has published on a variety of topics ranging from early Christian tunics decorated with New Testament scenes to medieval tombs and Byzantine transvestite nuns. In 2011-12 he is a member of the School of Historical Studies at the Institute of Advanced Study in Princeton, NJ. Marinis is currently preparing a monograph on the interaction of architecture and ritual in the medieval churches of Constantinople.
Ara H. Merjian is Assistant Professor of Italian Studies and Art History at New York University. He received his B.A. from Yale University in the History of Art, and his PhD from the University of California, Berkeley. He has published articles in numerous peer-reviewed journals, including Grey Room, The Getty Research Journal, Modernism/Modernity, Oxford Art Journal, and Res, and is the author of Giorgio de Chirico and the Metaphysical City, which is under contract with Yale University Press. He has taught at Stanford and Harvard Universities, and has held major fellowships from the Fulbright Commission, the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts (CASVA), and the Stanford Society of Fellows. He is a regular critic for Artforum, Art in America, and Frieze, and has authored numerous reviews in The Papers of Surrealism, Afterimage, and Modern Painters. Ara has lectured widely internationally, and been an invited speaker at the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid, the Pergamon Museum in Berlin, the Académie de France in Rome, and the Review Panel of the National Academy in New York. He teaches courses on the French and Italian avant-garde, Italian Neo-realist cinema, and Nietzschean philosophy and modernism.
Richard Meyer is Associate Professor of Art History and Fine Arts at the University of Southern California, where he also directs The Contemporary Project, a multi-year initiative to forge new dialogues between the academy and the art world, and the Visual Studies Graduate Certificate, an interdisciplinary program that reaches across the university’s faculty and curriculum. He is the author of Outlaw Representation: Censorship and Homosexuality in Twentieth-Century American Art which was awarded the Charles C. Eldredge Prize for Outstanding Scholarship in American Art from the Smithsonian American Art Museum. With Anthony W. Lee, he co-authored Weegee and Naked City and in collaboration with Catherine Lord, he recently completed Art and Queer Culture, 1885-present, an illustrated survey forthcoming from Phaidon Press. In 2009, he curated “Warhol’s Jews: Ten Portraits Reconsidered” for the Jewish Museum in New York and the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco. Meyer is now writing a short history of the idea of contemporary art in America beginning in the late 1920s titled What was Contemporary Art? In fall term 2010 he is Terra Foundation for American Art Visiting Professor at the Courtauld Institute in London.
Minoo Moallem is Professor and Chair of Gender and Women's Studies at UC Berkeley. She is the author of Between Warrior Brother and Veiled Sister: Islamic Fundamentalism and the Cultural Politics of Patriarchy in Iran, University of California Press, 2005. She is also the co-editor (with Caren Kaplan and Norma Alarcon) of Between Woman and Nation: Nationalisms,Transnational Feminisms and The State, Duke University Press, 1999, and the guest editor of a special issue of Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East on Iranian Immigrants, Exiles and Refugees. Moallem has recently ventured in digital media. Her on line project "Nation-on-the Move" (design by Eric Loyer) was recently published in Vectors: Journal of Culture and Technology in a Dynamic Vernacular (Special issue on Difference, Fall 2007). She is currently working on a book manuscript on the commodification of the nation through consumptive production and circulation of such commodity as the Persian carpet, a research project on gender, media and religion, and a project on Iran-Iraq war movies and masculinity.
Mia M. Mochizuki is the Thomas E. Bertelsen, Jr. Associate Professor of Art History and Religion at the Jesuit School of Theology, Santa Clara University, and the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, where she has served as Chair of the Art and Religion Area. She is also Affiliated Faculty in the Department of the History of Art at the University of California, Berkeley. Before coming to the GTU in 2005, she taught in the art history departments at Columbia University and the University of Chicago. Mochizuki’s interdisciplinary research has addressed problems in early modern religious art, with special attention to Reformation (Catholic and Protestant), Netherlandish and global Baroque art. She is the author of The Netherlandish Image after Iconoclasm, 1566-1672. Material Religion in the Dutch Golden Age (Ashgate, 2008), which received the College Art Association Publication Award and the ACE/Mercers’ International Book Award for Religious Art and Architecture, and In His Milieu. Essays on Netherlandish Art in Memory of John Michael Montias (Amsterdam University Press, 2006). Her work has been recognized by a J. William Fulbright/Netherland-America Foundation Fellowship, the Theron Rockwell Field Prize for the Best Doctoral Dissertation in the Humanities at Yale University, a Henry Luce III Fellowship in Theology from the Association of Theological Schools, and a Charles A. Ryskamp Fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies. Currently she is completing a book-length manuscript on The Jesuits and the Earliest European Art in Japan, 1549-1639.
Haroon Moghul is an Associate Editor at Religion Dispatches, a Contributing Editor for The Islamic Monthly, and a Fellow at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU). He is a Ph.D. candidate at Columbia University, focusing on Allama Iqbal’s concept of reconstruction as a case study for non-Western modernity. Haroon served as Director of Public Relations for the Islamic Center at New York University. His first novel, The Order of Light, is set in Cairo (Penguin 2006; French translation, Cherche Midi 2007). Moghul has worked as an analyst for the Tabah Foundation of Abu Dhabi, bridging traditional Islamic scholarship with Western academia. His media appearances include BBC, NPR, CNN, Russia Today, and The History Channel. Moghul has spoken across the United States and internationally on Islamic culture, contemporary politics in the Muslim world, and radicalism and religious identity.
Emerson Morgan is a Ph.D. student in Historical Musicology at Harvard. His research interests include medieval Latin plainchant and polyphony, early American psalmody, iconography of musical instruments, and materiality of complex objects used in music-making, such as liturgical books and architectural environment. He holds the A.B. in Music from Vassar and the M.A.R. in Religion and the Arts from Yale Divinity School, where he studied medieval Latin history, theology, art, and architecture. Morgan worked for six years at ARTstor, a nonprofit scholarly initiative of the Mellon Foundation for research and teaching in the arts, architecture, and the humanities.
Michelle Anais Morgan is a doctoral student in the American Studies Program at Yale University. She is also completing Yale’s Qualification in Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies. Her research focuses on nineteenth-century visual, material, and sensory cultures, performance studies, and queer theory. Morgan’s dissertation is in the earliest stages of planning, but will most likely look at how people during the nineteenth-century engaged questions of materiality, sexuality, and the body through a variety of mimetic objects and performance genres, such as living statues, tableaux vivants, dioramas, and automata. She is especially interested in how discourses of U.S. empire and imperialism shaped these practices. Morgan has worked as a research assistant for several scholars, most recently Sally Promey, as well as doing public humanities work for the Fifth Maine Regiment Museum and Victorian Mansion in Portland, Maine. She has published her work in the New England Journal of History and has presented at numerous conferences, nationally and internationally.
Barbara Mundy is Associate Professor of Art History at Fordham University. She specializes in Latin American art of the colonial period (16th through 18th centuries). Her book, The Mapping of New Spain was awarded the Nebenzahl Prize in the History of Cartography in 1996. A current project, Vistas: Visual Culture in Spanish America, 1520-1820, can be seen online at www.smith.edu/vistas. Research interests center on indigenous art created in the Spanish colony, especially in New Spain, cartography in the early modern period, and the role of collections in pre-Columbian art history.
Margaret Olin is Senior Research Scholar, in the Yale Divinity School, Department of History of Art, Department of Religious Studies, and Program in Judaic Studies at Yale University. Prior to coming to Yale, Olin was professor in the departments of Art History, Theory and Criticism, and Visual and Critical Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her publications include: The Nation Without Art: Examining Modern Discourses in Jewish Art (Nebraska 2001); Monuments and Memory, Made and Unmade, co-edited with Robert S. Nelson (Chicago 2003); Touching Photographs (forthcoming); and forthcoming essays on images of prisoners of war, the Vienna School of Art History, and other topics. She is a founder and co-editor of the journal Images: A Journal of Jewish Art and Visual Culture. Beginning in July 2009, she will be Senior Research Scholar at Yale University, in the Yale Divinity School, History of Art, Religious Studies, and Judaic Studies.
Sally M. Promey is Professor of American Studies and Professor of Religion and Visual Culture at Yale University where she is also Deputy Director of the Institute of Sacred Music. She directs the Initiative for the Study of Material and Visual Cultures of Religion and convenes the Sensory Cultures of Religion Research Group. She holds a secondary appointment in the Department of Religious Studies and an affiliation with History of Art. Her scholarship explores the visual and material cultures of religions in the United States from the early colonial period through the present. Current book projects include volumes titled “Religion in Plain View: Public Aesthetics of American Belief” and “Written on the Heart: Spiritual Sensations, Material Practices, and American Christianities.“ Among earlier publications, Promey’s Painting Religion in Public: John Singer Sargent’s “Triumph of Religion” at the Boston Public Library received the American Academy of Religion Award for Excellence in the Historical Study of Religion and Spiritual Spectacles: Vision and Image in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Shakerism was awarded the Charles C. Eldredge Prize for Distinguished Scholarship in American Art. She is also contributing author and co-editor, with David Morgan, of The Visual Culture of American Religions (California, 2001).
Kathryn Reklis is the Co-Director of the Institute for Art, Religion, and Social Justice based in New York City. She holds an MA from Yale Divinity School and an MA and MPhil from Yale University in Religious Studies, where she is also an advanced candidate for the Ph.D. Her research focuses on the intersection of Christian theology, performance studies, and ritual studies, seeking to understand how bodily gesture is constructed through ritual and performance activity to constitute a site of communal, individual and historical meaning. She is a Fellow of the Yale Initiative for Material and Visual Cultures of Religion and a Research Fellow for the New Media Project at Union Theological Seminary, where she also served as the Director of Theological Initiatives from 2008-2011.
Laurel C. Schneider earned her BA from Dartmouth College, her M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and her Ph.D. from the Graduate Department of Religion at Vanderbilt University where she studied theology, Native American religious traditions, and sociology of religion. She has served on the Religious Studies and Philosophy faculties of Colby College, North Central College, and is currently Professor of Theology, Ethics, and Culture at the Chicago Theological Seminary. Her books include Polydoxy: Theologies of Multiplicity and Relation (Routledge 2010, edited with Catherine Keller), Beyond Monotheism: A Theology of Multiplicity (Routledge 2008), and Re-Imagining the Divine: Confronting the Backlash Against Feminist Theology (Pilgrim, 1999). She is particularly interested in the status and meaning of religious experience, and is the author of numerous articles and anthology chapters that variously work at the intersections of theology with Native American religious traditions and race, sexuality, postcolonial, and gender theories. Her current research continues these interests in the area of comparative epistemology, theopoetics, and incarnation.
Erinn Staley is a doctoral candidate in Religious Studies and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Yale University, where she focuses on modern Christian theology. Her research interests include feminist Christian theologies, disability studies, and performance studies. She is writing a dissertation about intellectual disability, theological anthropology, and ecclesiology. She received her M.Div. from Yale Divinity School and her B.A. from Rhodes College.
Yui Suzuki is an historian of early Japanese Art and Assistant Professor of Japanese Art at the University of Maryland. She specializes in Japanese religious art, and is particularly interested in the contextual examination of Buddhist icons, their production, dissemination, iconography, and ritual functions. She is currently completing a book manuscript (University of Hawaii Press) that examines the primary role that images played in the devotional worship of the Medicine Buddha during the Heian period (794-1185). Suzuki’s teaching and research is interdisciplinary, focusing on the visual and material cultures of Japanese religions, including the study of sacred space, pilgrimage, and ritual objects. Her current project explores how the belief in otherworldly beings (such as ghosts and demons) shaped the early Japanese religious world, and how a variety of objects, from Buddhist statues to paper effigies, were used in pacification and purification rituals to appease and control these fearful entities.
Arnold I. Thomas is Minister for Education, Ecumenical, and Interfaith Relations at The Riverside Church. Before assuming his present responsibilities, Thomas served a variety of ministries, including Pastor of the First Congregational Church (now Faith United Church of Christ) in Little Rock, Arkansas; Chaplain and member of the faculty of Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut; Pastor of First Congregational Church in Williamstown, Massachusetts; and Conference Minister of the Vermont Conference of the United Church of Christ. He was also President of the Criminal Justice Ministry of Arkansas; Co-founder and Vice President of the Arkansas Conference of Churches and Synagogues; Co-founder and President of the Human Rights and Relations Task Force of Northern Berkshire County, where he was the recipient of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Peacemaker Award; President of the Vermont Ecumenical Council; and Co-founder of the Center for the Study of Science and Religion at Riverside, a cooperative program of the Riverside Church and Columbia University’s Center for the Study of Science and Religion. Thomas received his Baccalaureate in Religious Studies from Hiram College, his Master of Divinity from Yale University, and his Doctorate in Ministry from Hartford Seminary.
David Walker grew up in Boston and completed a BA in Religious Studies at Wesleyan University in 2003. After three years working as an administrator at Parsons School of Design in New York, he returned to Connecticut in 2006 to enroll in Yale University’s Department of Religious Studies where he is a PhD candidate in American religious history. His dissertation focuses on intersections of religion, settlement policy, and tourism in the nineteenth-century American West, particularly in northern Utah. He is interested in various locations of popular religious discussion and definition, including classrooms, courtrooms, American Indian policy, business prospectuses, travel guides, and land grant applications. His work for this project explores railroads and railroad literature as sites and media of religious imagination in the American West.
Judith Weisenfeld is Professor of Religion at Princeton University. A specialist in early twentieth-century African American religious history, her work has focused on African American women's religious history, religion and in film and popular culture, and religion and constructions of race. She is the author of Hollywood Be Thy Name: African American Religion in American Film, 1929-1949 (California, 2007) and African American Women and Christian Activism: New York's Black YWCA, 1905-1945 (Harvard 1997). She is currently working on a book titled Apostles of Race: Religion and Black Racial Identity in the Urban North, 1920-1950, for which she has been award a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
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