The American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) is pleased to announce the 2021 Luce/ACLS Dissertation Fellows in American Art.
This year, eight exceptional doctoral candidates have been recognized for their promising research in object- and image-based American art history. The program is made possible by the generous support of the Henry Luce Foundation.

Since 1992, this program has supported more than 300 historians of American art in researching and writing PhD dissertations with great potential to advance scholarship on the history of the visual arts of the United States, including all facets of Native American art. The 2021 fellows join previous recipients who have emerged as some of the nation’s most distinguished college and university faculty, museum curators, and leaders in the cultural sector.

The winning research projects explore timely and engaging topics that advance the field of art history, including artistic responses to climate change and colonial cultures, the performance of queer maximalism, the impact of Chicano artist Charles Bojorquez’s graffiti, and the systems of value surrounding Black vernacular photography.

“Understanding art and its history opens our eyes to the power of human experiments in creativity and empowers us to build a more inclusive future,” said ACLS President Joy Connolly. “ACLS is proud to support this exceptional group of scholars whose research on visual art inspires new ways of thinking about important subjects, including racial justice, gender and sexuality, and climate action.”

Each fellow will receive $42,000 to support one year of research and writing, as well as fellowship-related travel during the 2021-22 academic year. The 2021 fellowship recipients are:

  • Aleisha E. Barton, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, Vibrating Boundaries: Psychedelic Aesthetics in the Post-War Age, 1966-1970
  • Jack Crawford, City University of New York, The Graduate Center, Flamboyant Abundance: Performing Queer Maximalism, 1960-1990
  • Connor Hamm, University of California, Los Angeles, Coastal Modern: Art and the Lowcountry, 1900-1950s
  • Claire Ittner, University of California, Berkeley (2021 Ellen Holtzman Fellow), Fellow Travelers: The Artist-Researchers of the Rosenwald Fellowship, 1940-1950
  • Jessica Larson, City University of New York, The Graduate Center, Building Black Manhattan: Architecture, Art, and the Politics of Respectability, 1857-1914
  • Philomena Jazmin Lopez, University of California, San Diego, Breaking Boundaries: The Multilayered Value of Charles Bojorquez’s Graffiti Art from 1969 to 2019
  • Alisa Prince, University of Rochester, Exit Point: Tracing the Value of Black Vernacular Photographs From and Beyond the Domestic Archive
  • Margaret Wander, University of California, Santa Cruz, Artistic Responses to a Changing Planet: Creativity, Climate Change, and Colonial Cultures in Oceania

Additional information about the Luce/ACLS Fellowship program can be found here.