Jennifer Franks

PhD Student

Campus

Fields of Study

Areas of Interest

  • European fine and decorative art
  • Global histories and contemporary frameworks of the arts and sciences
  • Material culture of artists, early modern to contemporary
  • Age of Enlightenment

Working Dissertation

Supervisors

Philip Sohm

Biography

Jennifer Franks is an art and design advisor and historian specializing in European decorative art.  She has worked for Christie’s (New York), Waddesdon Manor (Buckinghamshire, UK) on behalf the National Trust and Rothschild estate, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, among other leading art institutions as museum Researcher, Chief Curator and Director, as well as Executive Director in the performing arts (presenting the world's top ranking contemporary dance companies). In recent years, her work has explored intersections of fine and decorative art, including how historic collections inspire contemporary art and design. She has consistently fostered global to local collaborations across communities and disciplines with the belief arts best illustrate and foster our shared humanity.

Selected Publications

  • "L'ancien régime et l'art contemporain," Ornamentum, Spring/Summer, 2021.
  • "History of Seventeenth-Century Flower Painting" in T.M. Glass: The Audible Language of Flowers, Toronto: OCAD University, Onsite Gallery, 2019.
  • "History of European Flower Vessels" in T.M. Glass: The Audible Language of Flowers, Toronto: OCAD University, Onsite Gallery, 2019.
  • "Heimat (Homeland): Immigration and Post-War National Identity." Technische Universität Braunschweig, 2002.

Recent Awards

  • 2020–24 Canada Council Grant on behalf of the Canadian Society of Decorative Arts / Cercle canadien des arts décoratifs for the society's publication "Ornamentum".
  • 2010–12 Seed Grants (Georgia Council for the Arts & Various) for programming serving African American students in the Central Savannah River Area of the United States.

Education

MA, Parsons School of Design, The New School, New York, New York
BA, University of Oklahoma with Universität Carolo-Wilhelmina, Brunswick, Germany

Presentations

"The Merchand-merciers of Paris," Lecture for Digital Series "Collectors at Home," Canadian Society of Decorative Arts / Cercle canadien des arts décoratifs, Toronto, Ontario, 2021.
"Fashioning Old into New: A History of Artist-Collectors," Lecture for Digital Series 'Collectors at Home', Canadian Society of Decorative Arts / Cercle canadien des arts décoratifs, Toronto, Ontario, October 17, 2021.
"From Utility to Life: Sculptural Decorative Arts," Lecture for Digital Series 'Collectors at Home', Canadian Society of Decorative Arts / Cercle canadien des arts décoratifs, Toronto, Ontario, June 20, 2020.
"Decorative Arts: Definition and Evolution," Lecture for Canadian Federation of University Women (United Nations), March 10, 2020.
"Complexity vs. Simplicity: Historic Influences on the Works of T.M. Glass," Lecture for OCAD University, Onsite Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, August 8, 2019.
"Ceramics in the Digital Age," Lecture for Gardiner Museum, Toronto, Ontario, 2015.
"Art and Access," Lecture for Augusta Ballet in partnership with the African American Art Alliance, Augusta, Georgia, US, 2010.

Administrative Service

Chair of Membership and Engagement, Young Patrons Circle, Gardiner Museum
Chair of Communications, Canadian Society of Decorative Arts / Cercle canadien des arts décoratifs
Newsletter Editor, Canadian Society of Decorative Arts / Cercle canadien des arts décoratifs

Cohort