Announcing ART/WORK, a new series

We’re delighted to announce a new Princeton University Press series, ART/WORK. Books in the ART/WORK series will respond to the latest trends in art history, pairing art history with conservation science in order to engage questions about manufacture and materials on a global scale and provide innovative narratives that aim to change how art history as a discipline is imagined. The series will be edited by art historians Caroline Fowler and Ittai Weinryb, who will also contribute to select volumes, in coordination with Michelle Komie, Publisher of art and architecture at PUP.

As Fowler and Weinryb explain, “We understand this series as a methodological model by which to rethink the discipline of art history, creating collaborative volumes in which art historians, conservators, scientists, and artists are in conversation about a single medium in a way that is accessible to a general public, and also intellectually provocative for art historians. In creating accessible introductions to a single material history—pigments, ceramics, weaving, plastics—we hope to engage diverse audiences, and to model a form of art history founded in collaboration, conversation, and an understanding of objects as formed through long histories of making, deterioration, care, conservation, and remaking.”

The inaugural series volumes will focus on the ceramic arts and pigment. From pre-Columbian Andean tombs to contemporary African sculpture, Ceramic Arts will consider ceramics as an artistic medium that uniquely records and expresses our individual and collective worlds across cultures. The volume will feature an introduction and conclusion by Sequoia Miller, chief curator at the Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art in Toronto and a practicing ceramic artist; with essays by art historian Margaret Graves, conservator Vicki Parry, and studio potter Magdalene Odundo. The book will also feature three case studies, organized chronologically from ancient to contemporary and spanning centuries and continents in range that put objects in cross-disciplinary conversation.

Pigments will tell the history of art through the lens of color and its invention; from charred bones, ground earth, stone, and bugs to the explosion of human-engineered color during the industrial revolution, pigments have been as central to global trade as to a critical history of race and racism. The book will feature an introduction by Fowler and Weinryb, as well as longer historical essays by art historian Sarah Rich and conservator Barbara Berrie and five case studies that, as with Ceramic Arts, move chronologically and span the globe.

The series, which will follow a standard format and publish in flexibound, will launch in September 2022.

About the Series Editors

Caroline Fowler is the Starr Director of Research and Academic Program at the Clark Art Institute and teaches in the graduate program at Williams College. She is a specialist in the early-modern period with a focus on the materiality of prints and drawings, philosophies of conservation, the archive and its absences, the failures of global art history, and the necessity of incorporating Critical Race Theory into early modern studies. She is the authors of two books, Drawing and the Senses: An Early Modern History and The Art of Paper: From the Holy Land to the Americas. Fowler’s research has been supported by the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, the Getty Research Institute, Zentralinstitut fur Kunstgeschichte, National Endowment for the Humanities, the Renaissance Society of America, and the Historians of Netherlandish Art. She hosts the podcast In the Foreground: Conversations on Art and Writing. You can follow her on Twitter @FowlerCaro

Ittai Weinryb is Associate Professor at the Bard Graduate Center, where he also serves as editor of West 86th: A Journal of Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture. Weinryb teaches and writes on medieval art and material and visual culture from the greater Mediterranean to Eurasia and the Indian Ocean and is the author of The Bronze Object in the Middle Ages, which was awarded the International Center of Medieval Art Book Prize. He is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including the Simon Guggenheim Fellowship; Paul Mellon Senior Fellowship, Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts at the National Gallery, Washington, DC; Franklin Grant, American Philosophical Society; Andrew Mellon Fellowship, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton; and Max Planck Doctoral Fellowship at the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz. You can follow him on Twitter @IttaiWeinryb