Lectures & Speaker Series

The Department of Art History is proud to host a series of exceptional events bringing world-class researchers, educators, and artists to campus to deliver lectures and to engage in discussion.

The Department of Art History hosts a number of guest lecturers, seminars, and symposia annually. The Departmental Speaker Series features contributors from the University of Toronto and beyond covering topics across all the fields of art history. Since the series was introduced, we have enjoyed high attendance from faculty and students alike. For students, the series is a great opportunity to expose oneself to original research and take part in and become familiar with the practice of scholarly debate in the discipline of art history.

Speakers for the upcoming year will be posted as they become available. Check this page regularly for updates.

Visit the named lecture pages for additional departmental lectures and symposia:

J. Walter Graham Lecture Series

Peter H. Brieger Memorial Lecture Series

W. Bernard Herman Distinguished Visiting Scholar

Ydessa Hendeles Art Foundation Distinguished Visitor in Fine Art

Date Speaker Title
May 1 Bernard O'Kane, The American University in Cairo "Spaces for Women in Mosques: Past, Present and Future"
April 23 Barthélémy Jobert, Sorbonne University Faculté des lettres "Eugène Delacroix: AI and Digital Humanities"
April 9 Marianne Cojannot-Le Blanc, University of Paris Nanterre "Obsolescence Forbidden! The challenges of creation in the classical age"
March 26 Surekha Davies "The Science of Sea Monsters: Art and Emotions in the Mapping of Nature"
May 12 Bice Peruzzi, Rutgers-New Brunswick School of Arts and Sciences "Drunken women with spears? Funerary practices and female identity in pre-Roman Apulia"
February 27

Anne-Orange Poilpré, University of Paris Sorbonne

"Re-composing biblical time with images in Carolingian Bibles"
January 16 Jean-Philippe Garric, University of Paris Sorbonne "Cointeraux, Lequeux and Percier: Three Architects Across the Revolution"
November 9 Krista Thompson "Tom Lloyd and Black Art Study"
November 1 Anthony Gerbino, University of Manchester "Painting and Mapping Landscapes in Renaissance France"
October 24 Jérémie Koering, University of Fribourg "Royal Occasion: Velázquez' Las Meninas and the Power of Painting"
Date Speaker Title
May 23 Nathalie Ginoux, Sorbonne University "Protohistoric Art in Debate: The Case of Ancient Celtic Art"
May 23 Laurent Olivier, National Museum of Archaeology, Saint-Germain-en-Laye "The Visuality of Early Celtic Art: For an Archaeology of Images"
March 21

Oliver Botar, University of Manitoba

"Sensory Derangement: Dis / Re-orientation and the European Avant-Garde"
February 13 Michel Hochmann, Ecole Pratiques des Hautes Etudes, Paris "The Venetian painter's studio in the 16th century: some remarks"
February 8 Symeon van Donkelaar, Artist "Dirt to Divinity: The Icons of Symeon van Donkelaar"
November 18 Peter Coffman, Carleton University "Many Mansions: The Architectural and Historical Contexts of the Mohawk Chapel"
November 1 Kathleen James-Chakraborty, University College Dublin "Expanding Agency: Women and the Global Dissemination of Modern Architecture, 1920–1970"
October 26 Jean-Marie Guillouët, University of Burgundy, Dijony "Hyper-Technical Gothic ? A Micro-History of Late Medieval Craftsmanship (ca 1400-1530)"
October 12 Marisa Bass, Yale University "The Monument's End"
Date Speaker Title
April 26 Lola Olufemi, University of Westminster "EXPERIMENTS IN IMAGINING OTHERWISE: past(present/future)-----present(future/past)-----future(past/present)"
March 10-12 The Miniature: An International Conference
March 4 Margaret Graves, Indiana University "Painting as Process, Painting as Surface: The Shifting Status of the Image in Medieval Islam"
February 4 Sea Machines Symposium
Date Speaker Title
February 25 Stephen J. Campbell, Krieger School of Arts & Sciences, Johns Hopkins University "The Shape of Pre-Modern Lives: Toward an anti-biography of Leonardo da Vinci"
November 20 Sonal Khullar, University of Pennsylvania "Dialogic Actions: Aesthetics, Agency, and Contemporary Art from India"
November 14 Paul Vandenbroeck, Illuminare, Centre for the Study of Medieval Art, KU Leuven "Bosch's cosmology"
October 30 Philip T. Waddell, University of Arizona "The Imperial Gaze: Focalization and Alignment in Tacitus' Annales"
October 23 Heather Igloliorte, Concordia University
Carla Taunton, NSCAD University
"New Directions in Writing Indigenous Art Histories: Theories and Methodologies for Canada and the US"
Date Speaker Title
March 8 Kurt W. Forster, Yale University "The Past in Gestures, the Future in Memory: Aby Warburg’s Cultural History"
March 7 Kurt W. Forster, Yale University

The John Parkin Lecture in the History of Modern Architecture: "The Birth of Architecture from the Spirit of Conversation"

January 28

Julia Lum, University of Toronto

"Landscapes of the Pacific: Art at the Meeting Places of Britain and Oceania”
December 18 Jacques Khalip, Department of English, Brown University "Workshop on Last Things: Disastrous Form from Kant to Hujar" (Fordham, 2018)

October 24

Bernard O’Kane, The American University in Cairo

“Stars and Symmetry: The Prophet Muhammad’s Name in Architectural Inscriptions”

October 18–19 Coming to Our Senses: Sensory Methodology and Experience in the 21st Century
October 19

David Howes, Concordia University

“Sensory Ethnography: Between Art and Anthropology”

October 18

Constance Classen, Concordia University

“Collecting Our Senses: Seeing, Hearing and Touching in the Museum”

September 20 Peter Stewart, Director, Classical Art Research Centre, University of Oxford "From Yorkshire to Yingpan: The Global Life of Roman Art"


Date Speaker Title

January 22

John Onians, University of East Anglia

“Strengthening the Foundations of Art History: The Discipline’s Changing Assumptions and the Relevance of Neuroscience—A Reassessment”

October 26

Johanne Sloan, Concordia University

“Joyce Wieland: Archival Manoeuvres Then and Now”

October 5

Michelangelo Sabatino, Illinois Institute of Technology College of Architecture

“Beyond Wilderness: Modern Architectures in Canada”

September 27 Klaus Krüger, Kunsthistorisches Institut Freie Universität, Berlin "Imaginary Sounds. Painted Visions of Celestial Music"


Date Speaker Title

April 3

Geoffrey Belknap, Curator of Photography and Photographic Technology, National Media Museum (UK)

“Illustrating Natural History: Images, Periodicals, and the Making of Nineteenth-Century Scientific Communities”

March 23

Phyllis Kornfeld

“Cellblock Visions: Set Free in the Penitentiary”

March 13

Rebecca Zorach, Northwestern University

“Monsters as Images and Images as Monsters in the Late Renaissance”

February 17 '…à la fausse critique’: Some Ways of Thinking about Dada and Surrealism - A Symposium in Honour of Jann Marson

January 9

Susan Dackerman, Getty Research Institute

“The Paleontology of Print”

November 9

Trine Friis Sørensen, Aarhus University

“The Flash and the Spectre: The Workings of the Past in a Performance by Olof Olsson”

October 27 Yvonne Rainer "What’s So Funny? Laughter and Anger in the Time of the Assassins"
October 24 Alessandro Nova, Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz "Leonardo and the Representation of Nature"

September 26

Samuel Spinner, Johns Hopkins University

“Moi Ver and the Jewish Vernacular of Avant-Garde Photography”


Date Speaker Title

February 9

Stephan Hoppe, Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich

“Urbino, Meissen, Burghausen. Three 15th-Century Palaces and the New Search for Antique Grandeur”

January 25

Stephen Campbell, Johns Hopkins University

“Against Titian”

December 3

Amanda Boetzkes, University of Guelph

“Ecologicity: Perception, Sense-Effects and Aesthetic Appreciation”


Date Speaker Title
March 12 Alfreda Murck "Mao Zedong’s Mangoes: The Intersection of Art, Propaganda, and Religion"

March 5

Michael Leja

“Early Mass Culture’s Image Ecology”

October 28

Stephen Forcer, University of Birmingham

“I’m Just Bored to Tears by Books About the History of Dada: New Approaches to the Dada Movement”


Date Speaker Title

March 21

Cynthia Osiecki, University of Greifswald

“The Language of Sculptures: The Spread of the Floris-Style in the Baltic Sea Regions (c. 1560–1648)”

February 13 A Methodology Colloquium: Approaches to Northern Early Modern Art
October 10 Georges Didi-Huberman "Image, Lament, and Rage. Pier Paolo Pasolini’s ‘La Rabbia’"
October 1 Jaś Elsner, Corpus Christi College, Oxford University, Visiting Professor, University of Chicago "Visual Ontologies: Style, Archaism, and the Construction of the Sacred in the Western Tradition”
September 30

William Kentridge

“Second-Hand Reading"


Date Speaker Title

April 9

Shalom Sabar, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

“Rembrandt’s Hebrew Script: The Artist and Amsterdam’s Jews Between Myth and Reality”

March 26

Joyce Goggin, University of Amsterdam

“Futurity and the ‘Art’ of Gunther von Hagens”

March 14

Nicole Blackwood, University of Toronto

“Unique Multiples: Picturing the Inuit in Elizabethan England”

March 7

Maria Loh, University College, London

“A Ghost is Born”

February 21

John Onians, University of East Anglia, Norwich

“European Art from Prehistory to the Present: A Neuroarthistory”

January 29

Steven Harris, University of Alberta

“Reimagining the Relation Between Poetics and Politics in Postwar Europe”

January 24 Christopher Wood, Yale University “The Uninvited”
January 7 Jan Driessen, Université catholique de Louvain, Director, Belgian School at Athens "Ariadne’s Thread: Backtracking the Minoan Palaces"

November 6

David Carrier, University of Pittsburgh

“Wild Art”

October 30

Allison Morehead, Queen’s University

“Collecting and Exhibiting at the Musée de la folie”

September 21

Sarah Semple, Durham University

“Perceptions of the Prehistoric in Anglo-Saxon England: Religion, Ritual, and Rulership in the Lanscape”


Date Speaker Title

April 9

Ara H. Merjian, Stanford University

“The Objects of Architecture: Le Corbusier, Purism, and Metaphysical Painting, 1918–24”

March 20 Ulrich Pfisterer, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München "Raphael’s Muse: Erotic Inspiration in the Renaissance"
March 15–18 The Association for Asian Studies Annual Meeting
February 28 Eric Michaud, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris "The Barbarian Invasions and the Racialization of Art History”

November 30

Marja Lahelma, University of Helsinki

“The Self as Source: Inwardness and the Image of the Artist at the Fin-de-siècle”

November 3

Aimée Brown Price

“Pierre Puvis de Chavannes and the Invention of Modernism: Quizzical Paintings and Misérabilisme”

October 28

Dick Hebdige, University of California, Santa Barbara

“After Punk, After Love: From Malcolm McLaren to Takashi Murakami”


Date Speaker Title

March 31

Christopher Green, Courtauld Institute of Art

“Unknown Masterpieces: Picasso’s Cubism, 1910–12”

March 22

Koenraad Jonckheere, University of Ghent

“Visual Oecumene: Decorum Experiments in Antwerp Painting After the Iconoclasm (1566)”

March 11–12

31st Canadian Conference on Medieval Art Historians

March 4

Mirian Arbus, Max Berg, Brett Bergmann, Nelson Cheng, Francisco Granados, Tarnjeev Guram, Matt Macintosh, Bariman Mousavi, Faye Mullen, Wanda Nanibush, Katherine Porter, Mohammed Soroor, Chris Wanless

“Spectacle and Impermanence: The Students Respond”

February 17

Katrin Kogman-Appel, Ben Gurion University

“Joel ben Simeon: Scribe, Artist, and Agent of Cultural Exchange”

January 28

Lane Relyea, Northwestern University

“CSI versus DIY: Photography between Aftermath and Aftermarket”

November 18 Anna Gruetzner Robbins, University of Reading “Michael Field and Female Desire: Looking at Botticelli and Manet in the 1890s”
November 5–19 Spectacle and Impermanence: A Tri-Campus Event Series Curated by Tom Bessai and Lisa Steele
November 4 Richard Schiff, University of Texas “Spectacle and Impermanence: Cezanne: Subject to Abstraction”
November 2 Anne Wagner, Henry Moore Foundation Research Curator, Tate Britain “Women’s Time: Martin and Truitt in the Moment of Minimalism”
October 8 Wayne Franits, University of Syracuse “A Tale of Two Canvases: Vermeer’s Astronomer and Geographer”


Date Speaker Title
April 27 Marisa Marthari, KA Ephorate of Prehistoric and Classicial Antiquities, Greece "Excavating and enhancing the EB II Cycladic settlement at the site of Skarkos on Ios"
September 22 Neil Cox, University of Essex “Picasso’s ‘Toys for Adults’: Cubism as Surrealism”
September 17 David Hopkins, University of Glasgow “Marcel Duchamp’s Etant Donnés and the Rhetoric of Liberty”


Date Speaker Title
April 8 Victor Burgin, Goldsmiths College, London (2008-09 Colloquium on Visual Culture)
April 1 Jody Berland, York University (2008-09 Colloquium on Visual Culture)
March 5 Beyond van Eyck: Netherlandish Painting at the Turn of the Sixteenth Century
February 23 Giles Knox, Indiana University Bloomington “Eggs, Water, Metal: Velázquez, the Paragone, and the Products of Pratica”
February 5 Jim Drobnick and Jennifer Fisher, Montreal-Based Artists and Theorists (2008-09 Colloquium on Visual Culture)
January 22 Philip Monk, Art Gallery of York University (2008-09 Colloquium on Visual Culture)
January 12 Ortwin Dally, Secretary General, German Archaeological Institute "The Power of the Roman Emperor: German Classical Archaeology between 1968 and Today"
December 4 Vera Frenkel, Toronto-Based Multi-Disciplinary Artist (2008-09 Colloquium on Visual Culture)
November 24 Nikki Lee, New York Based-Photographer and Louis Kaplan, University of Toronto (2008-09 Colloquium on Visual Culture)


Date Speaker Title
March 10 AA Bronson “School for Young Shamans”
November 1 Timon Screech, University of London "The Voyage of the New Year’s Gift: A Cargo of Paintings for Asian Emperors and Kings, Sent from London, 1614”


Date Speaker Title
April 3 Andreas Huyssen, Columbia University "A Modernist after Postmodernism—Guillermo Kuitca, Painter of Space”
November 3-March 30 2005-06 Colloquium on Visual Culture
March 30 Eduardo Cadava, Princeton University
March 16 John Mighton, Toronto Playwright and Mathematician
February 2 Sara Diamond, Ontario College of Arts and Design
January 19 Atom Egoyan, Filmmaker
November 24 Stephen Bann, University of Bristol
November 3 Simon Glass, Photo-Based Artist


Date Speaker Title
January 24 Jeffrey Muller, Brown University "White Slavery, Brotherhood and Art in Early Modern Antwerp: The Confraternity of the Holy Trinity in the Parish Church of St. Jacob”
October 13 Sturt Manning, University of Toronto “The Future of Aegean Prehistory and the Problem of Archaeology versus Science”


Date Speaker Title
January 13 Conrad Rudolph, University of California, Riverside "The Origin of the Gothic Portal and the Systematization of Imagery”
November 21 Michael Fried, art critic and historian "Barthes’s Punctum"
November 7–8 Editing (out?) the Image (Conference convened by Elizabeth Legge and Mark A. Cheetham)

Catherine Soussloff, University of California, Santa Cruz

“Image (less) Text: Visual and Verbal Rhetoric in Early Modern Art History”
  John Onians, University of East Anglia, Norwich “Editing In: World Art Studies and the Constraints of Academic Disciplines”
  John Greyson “Mr. Blank Edits History”
  Reesa Greenberg, Université de Montréal “Editing the Image: Museums and the Web”
  John O’Brian, University of British Columbia “Rectified Smiles: Signs of Distress in the Postwar Postcard”
  David Carrier, Case Western Reserve University/Cleveland Institute of Art “The Art Museum as Installation: An Interpretation of the Place of Matisse’s The Joy of Life in the Barnes Foundation”