Graduate Student Highlights

Sun Yan (East Asian)

“Critical thinking and analytical skills are what I gained most from the PhD program. The early Chinese art history program exposed me to the methodologies of other disciplines, especially archeology and history, from which I benefit a lot in my own history.”

Sun Yan, PhD 2001, is assistant professor of visual arts at Gettysburg College. Coeditor (with Kathy Linduff) of Gender and Chinese Archeology, she studies exchange and interactions among the Bronze-age cultures of China’s northern frontier. With a research grant from the Chiang Ching-Kuo Foundation, she is working on a new book project, Art, Ritual and Political Power: Constructing Cultural Identity in Early Bronze Age China.

Kate Dimitrova (Europe pre-1750)

“The PhD program has built a strong foundation for me by offering challenging graduate seminars, coaching for undergraduate teaching, assistance with writing successful grant proposals, and general travel funds to conduct doctoral research abroad and to present papers at international conferences. Furthermore, the chance to be mentored by an amazingly knowledgeable and generous professor—who has personally guided me though the process of becoming a successful scholar and teacher—has been invaluable.”

Kate Dimitrova, winner of a two-year Kress predoctoral fellowship, is undertaking a pioneering study into the origins of the luxury tapestry industry in 15th-century Northern Europe and its links to clerical patronage in Spain. Her research reveals an important, if little known, international market in the early modern period with significant artistic exchange between northern and southern Europe.

Karla Huebner (Modern/Contemporary)

“My advisor encouraged me to pursue a dissertation topic that was outside her immediate expertise—a topic that was not then, and as far as I know, within the direct expertise of any art historian in the United States—and my committee has supported my project with enthusiasm. Faculty members and graduate students here get to know each other well and frequently work on projects and committees together. Overall, the department is responsive and proactive with a collegial atmosphere.”

Karla Huebner, recipient of a Fulbright-Hayes Doctoral Dissertation Research Fellowship, is doing the first full-length study in English of the Czech surrealist artist Toyen, a woman who traveled and worked between the avant-garde worlds of Prague and Paris. Huebner is particularly interested in issues of gender and eroticism as they unfolded across national boundaries and artistic communities.