Current Students in History of Art

Lola Arellano-Weddleton

Lola Arellano-Weddleton

Lola is a first-year student in the History of Art. She received her AB in History and the History of Art from Smith College in 2011, and her MA in the History of Art, with Distinction, from the Courtauld in 2013. From 2011-2012 she lived in Warsaw, Poland on a Fulbright research grant in Museum Studies. Her research interests center on the political contexts of memory, memorialization, and museum exhibition, primarily within East/Central Europe.

Shira Backer

Modern and Contemporary Art

Shira is a third-year student completing an M.A. thesis on the ceramics of Sterling Ruby, a contemporary, Los Angeles-based artist who also works in collage and video, along with other sculptural media. The thesis explores the relationship of a recent series of sculptures, "Basin Theology," to parts of Ruby's oeuvre that function as social critique in more obvious ways. Shira received her B.A. in Philosophy from Barnard College, and spent a year working in the education department of the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers, New York. In 2011-2012, she is serving as the Graduate Assistant in Special Collections at Bryn Mawr.

Alexander P. Brey

Early Medieval Art and Architecture

Alex is a PhD student researching artistic exchange in the Late Antique and Early Medieval Middle East. He received his B.A. in Medieval and Renaissance Studies from Vassar College in 2008, and his M.A. in the History of Art from Bryn Mawr College in 2011. In addition to an internship in the Department of European Painting at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Alex has worked on excavations of Late Antique and Medieval sites in Scotland, Jordan, and Israel, and participated in on-site research seminars in Turkey (Cappadocia) and Uzbekistan. He has presented research at UPenn's annual Medievalists @ Penn conference, George Washington University's Medieval and Early Modern Studies Institute, and Bryn Mawr's Biennial Graduate Group Symposium. He is currently representing the students of the GSAS on the Bryn Mawr College Diversity Council, and co-hosts the infamous biannual Medieval and Renaissance Studies tea with Maeve Doyle.

Sarah BurfordSarah Burford
Twentieth-century European Modernism

Sarah is a second-year student in History of Art studying twentieth-century European modernism and cultural politics, particularly during the rise of fascism and World War II. Her additional research interests include Jewish identity politics, Holocaust memorial culture, and contemporary American and European art. Sarah received her B.A. in Art History from Swarthmore College and has worked at the Jewish Museum, artnet, and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. She currently works with the Curatorial and Program Departments at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia.

Mark Anthony Castro

Spanish and Spanish Colonial Art

Mark is a PhD candidate working with Professor Clara Bargellini. His dissertation will examine painting cycles depicting the life of Saint Francis produced for Franciscan Institutions in New Spain, in particular the series produced by the painter Cristóbal de Villalpando for the Franciscan Convent in Antigua, Guatemala. Mark received his B.A. in Archaeology and Studio Art from Hamilton College in 2005, and his M.A. from Bryn Mawr College in 2010. Since the fall of 2005 he has been an Exhibition Coordinator at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.


Maeve Doyle

Medieval Art

Maeve is a Ph.D. candidate specializing in book arts of the later Middle Ages. Maeve received her AB in 2007 from Vassar College and her MA from Bryn Mawr in 2009. Her dissertation, advised by Dale Kinney, addresses owner portraits in devotional manuscripts produced around 1300 across northern France. This project continues work begun in her Master’s thesis, a study of the gendered representation and reception of owner portraits and other marginal imagery in the Aspremont-Kievraing Psalter-Hours (ca. 1300). She has conducted research for this project in the US, Europe, and Australia, supported in part by a Fulbright fellowship to France in 2011-2012. Maeve has presented her work at the International Medieval Congress in Leeds and the International Congress on Medieval Studies in Kalamazoo as well as at conferences at the Frick Collection, the University of Bristol, and the University of Pennsylvania. At Bryn Mawr she has also been a TA in the History of Art department and has participated in the organization of three biennial Graduate Group symposia.


Lori Anne Felton

German and Austrian Modernism

Lori is a PhD candidate in the History of Art, working with Professor Christiane Hertel. Her dissertation focuses on Egon Schiele's portraiture production, an interest that continues from her Master's thesis, which examined the theme of the doppelgänger within some of Schiele's self-portraits. Lori received her B.A. in Liberal Studies from American University in 2005 and her M.A. in Art History from Bryn Mawr College in 2010. Lori served as an Assistant Fellowships Adviser from 2008-2010 and as a Teaching Assistant for the Art History department in the fall of 2010. She served on the organizing committee for the biennial Graduate Group Symposium in 2009, and has been a member of the Graduate Student Mentoring Program since its inception in 2009. She presented her research at the German Studies Association conference in September 2011. She is currently conducting dissertation research in Vienna on a Fulbright grant.

Robin Kim
Romanesque Art and Architecture

Robin is a Ph.D. candidate in history of art researching Romanesque architecture in Northern Spain, specifically in the region of Navarra. The Santo Sepulchro in Torres del Río and Santa María de Eunate are the case studies of her dissertation. She holds a Master's degree from Bryn Mawr College, with a concentration on film studies. Prior to attending Bryn Mawr College, Robin received a Master's degree from the Courtauld Institute in London in Medieval Art and Architecture, where her interests in medieval art history became more centered on architecture. Robin received her B.A. from the University of Chicago.

Justinne Lake-Jedzinak
Justinne Lake-Jedzinak
Italian Renaissance portraiture

Justinne is a second-year graduate student in the History of Art. She received her B.A. in History from James Madison University and her M.A. in Art History from Queens College. Her research interests include Italian Renaissance portraiture and the classical tradition. She has worked as a Museum Educator at the New-York Historical Society and will be a graduate intern in the Robert Lehman Collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art for the summer of 2013.


Katherine Rochester

Modern and Contemporary Art

Katherine is a fourth-year PhD candidate working with Professors Christiane Hertel, at Bryn Mawr College and Karen Beckman, at the University of Pennsylvania. Her dissertation focuses on early experimental animation in Weimar-era Berlin. Katherine received her B.A. from Grinnell College in 2006 and her MA from Bryn Mawr College in 2012. In 2011, Katherine held a curatorial internship at the Whitney Museum of American Art, where she worked on the 2012 Whitney Biennial. Katherine is the Curatorial Assistant and an author for the catalogue on an upcoming exhibition of the late artist Jason Rhoades, at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia. She sits on the Curatorial Committee for the artist-in-residency program at Eastern State Penitentiary, and is a frequent contributor to, Art in America, the Philadelphia Weekly, and various artist-run publications. Most recently, Katherine gave papers on Paul Chan and John Stezaker at Johns Hopkins University and CUNY Graduate Center, and participated as an art critic on The Review Panel at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.

Nathanael Roesch

Modern and Contemporary Art

Nathanael is a PhD candidate working with Professor Lisa Saltzman. His dissertation considers representation of sport in contemporary art. Other interests include the histories of newer media (photography, television, digital) and 20th-century American art. Nathanael received his B.F.A. in Graphic Design from Bowling Green State University in 2002; he received his M.A. in Art History from the University of Georgia in 2009. He has presented papers at the Philadelphia Museum of Art and SECAC and continues to balance his academic work with freelance design projects.

Michelle Smiley

Michelle Smiley

Michelle is a first-year student in History of Art studying the history of photography and American mass culture and art, particularly of the antebellum and Civil War eras. Her additional research interests include theories of the still and moving image, Hollywood cinema, time, and portraiture. Michelle received her A.B. in History of Art from Bryn Mawr College in 2012. She has worked as a museum educator at the Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, as well as an English teacher in Rouen, France.

Shannon Steiner
Late Antique and Byzantine Art

Shannon is a PhD student working with Professor Alicia Walker. She earned a B.A. in Art History in 2009 from Temple University and completed her M.A. in 2011 at the University of Texas at Austin along with an M.A. in 2013 from Bryn Mawr College. Her research focuses on the visual culture of saints' cults and the role of art in forming community and gender identities in late antiquity and early Byzantium. She has presented at the University of Texas at Austin, Princeton University, Western Michigan University, as well as the Hellenic College and Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology. Shannon recently contributed an essay on pilgrimage tokens from Byzantine Syria to a catalog corresponding to the exhibit "Byzantine Things in the World" at the Menil Collection in Houston.

Nava Streiter

Nava Streiter
Byzantine art

Nava is a second-year student studying Byzantine art with Professor Alicia Walker. She received a BA from the Macaulay Honors College at Queens College, CUNY and an MA from The Courtauld Institute of Art. She looks forward to acting as a special collections research assistant in the coming year.

Amalia Wojciechowski

Prints and Printmaking

Amalia is a first-year M.A. candidate specializing in prints and printmaking. Amalia received her B.A in History, with a minor in Art History from Oberlin College in 2009. Amalia spent her junior year abroad, studying in Cordoba, Spain at the Universidad de Cordoba, and in Rome through the John Felice Rome Center program out of Loyola University of Chicago.  In the winter of 2008, she participated in the Practicum in Museum Education at the Allen Memorial Art Museum, allowing her to become part of the student docent corps for the rest of her three years at Oberlin College. In the summer of 2009, she worked as the Educational Intern, assisting the Curator of Education at the Allen, publishing teaching guides to the collection and exhibitions, as well as a podcast on works in the permanent collection.


Mechella Ignace Yezernitskaya

Mechella is a first-year student in the History of Art. She received her B.A. in Art History from Fordham University in 2012.  During her tenure at Fordham, Mechella conducted research on Kazimir Malevich in Kiev, Ukraine on the Stark Travel Prize and co-organized Arctic Subtext at Fordham’s Center Gallery, exhibiting photographic work of artist and environmental activist Subhankar Banerjee. Her research interests include the Russian and Soviet avant-gardes, the histories of photography and film, museum studies, contemporary art, and environmental art.