Amisha Padnani, “Overlooked No More: Honoring Women Excluded from History”
is an editor on The New York Times obituaries desk and the creator of “Overlooked,” a series that tells the stories of remarkable people whose deaths were not originally reported on by the Times. The series is becoming a television show and will eventually be turned into a book. She has traveled the world talking about her work and has done a TED talk about how to refocus society's lens on who is considered important.
Before joining the Times in 2011, Padnani worked as a reporter and digital editor for several New York City-area newspapers.
Margaret Adler, “To the Rescue: Picturing Ida Lewis”
is curator at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Fort Worth, Texas, where she has organized or co-organized exhibitions on Audubon, hunting and fishing in American art, Samuel F.B. Morse and Sam Francis, among others. Prior to joining the Amon Carter, Adler held the Barra fellowship at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. She serves as co-chair for the Association for the Historians of American Art.
Though her scholarly research focuses on 19th-century art, Adler is also passionate about collaborating with contemporary artists, helping them with large-scale commissions. She has worked with Jenny Holzer, Pepon Osorio and Gabriel Dawe on site-specific installations. She is currently planning a major commission with artist Mark Dion and collaborating on a traveling exhibition pairing Winslow Homer and Frederic Remington. She holds a B.A. in Classical Languages and Art History and an M.A. in Art History from Williams College.
Wanda M. Corn, “Women Building History at the 1893 Columbian Exposition”
Wanda M. Corn
the Robert and Ruth Halperin Professor Emerita of Art History at Stanford University, specializes in modern art and visual culture. She takes a special interest in the ways artists and art movements traveled globally in the early 20th century; her scholarship on transatlantic modernism focuses on the exchanges and interdependencies of avant-garde artists in Paris and New York.
During her career at Stanford, she brought John D. Rockefeller's personal collection to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, including 110 paintings described as the museums’ “single most important gift of art.” She also served as acting director of the Stanford Art Museum, now known as the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts.
She has published works about artists including Georgia O'Keeffe, Andrew Wyeth and Grant Wood as well as other topics in modern art.
Dr. Corn has received numerous awards and honors for her research. She organized the 2017 exhibition “Georgia O'Keeffe: Living Modern” at the Brooklyn Museum, and wrote the accompanying catalogue, which received a 2018 Dedalus Foundation Exhibition Catalogue Award.
April F. Masten, “Art Work: Laborers in the Field of the Beautiful”
Associate professor of history at the University of Stonybrook, April F. Masten
studies how the convergence of particular economic, political and social events and ideas build structures of opportunity for cultural producers. Her first book, “Art Work,” looked at the education and careers of women artists in mid-19th-century America. She is currently researching the subject of antebellum Irish- and African-American competitive jig-dancers. Both projects began with the premise that the lives of artists document important historical shifts, because every art form derives its meaning from the conditions of its production and reception.
Dr. Masten received her doctorate in American History from Rutgers University and holds an M.A. in the Social History of Art from the University of Leeds in the U.K. and an M.A. in European and American History from Rutgers. She is the author of numerous published articles and lectures widely on 19th-century culture and women artists.
Erica E. Hirshler, “Studios of Their Own: Women Artists in Boston 1880-1940”
Erica E. Hirshler
is Croll Senior Curator of Painting, Art of the Americas, at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. An expert in late 19th- and early 20th-century American painting, she has published extensively on John Singer Sargent, Mary Cassatt, Childe Hassam, Dennis Bunker, William Merritt Chase, Winslow Homer and women artists and collectors. American Impressionism and the Boston School figure frequently in her lectures and writings.
Dr. Hirshler holds a B.A. from Wellesley College and a Ph.D. from Boston University. She has presented at numerous museums and cultural institutions across the United States, Europe and Japan. Her numerous books and articles include “A Studio of Her Own: Women Artists in Boston 1870–1940” (2001) and “Sargent's Daughters: The Biography of a Painting” (2009).
Eve Kahn, “Forever Seeing New Beauties: Mary Rogers Williams”
, a noted historian and journalist, is most well known for her weekly Antiques column that ran in The New York Times from 2008 to 2016. As a writer, scholar and exhibition adviser, Kahn specializes in art, architecture, design and preservation. She is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard University and lectures regularly in New York, New England and elsewhere.
Adding to her accolades, Kahn is also an accomplished author. She will discuss her latest project and book, “Forever Seeing New Beauties: The Forgotten Impressionist Mary Rogers Williams 1857-1907” (Wesleyan University Press, 2019). In her presentation, Kahn will address the life and work of one of America's most accomplished yet least-known female artists.
Judith K. Major, “Mariana Griswold von Rensselaer in Newport”
Judith K. Major
is a landscape historian with a concentration on 19th-century American landscape architecture. Her books include “Mariana Griswold Van Rensselaer: the Evolution of a Landscape Critic in the Gilded Age” and “To Live in the New World: A. J. Downing and American Landscape Gardening ,” and she lectures widely on Downing and Van Rensselaer. She also contributed a chapter entitled “Toward an American Gardening Theory” to the New York Botanical Garden’s “Flora Illustrata,” which won the 2015 American Horticultural Society Book Award.
In 2009, she traveled to China on a University of Kansas grant from its Center for East Asian Studies to lecture and to study traditional Chinese gardens. She is a charter member of the Landscape History Chapter of the Society of Architectural Historians, and she chairs sessions and gives presentations at national and international conferences.
She taught at the University of Kansas for 23 years in the Architecture Program and ended her academic career at Kansas State University in the Department of Landscape Architecture, retiring as a Professor Emerita in 2014.
Anna O. Marley, “Fresh and Fierce: Women's Artistic Networks of the Progressive Era”
Anna O. Marley
is curator of Historical American Art and director for the Center of the Study of the American Artist at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, which she joined in 2009. She has curated more than 15 exhibitions for the academy.
Marley served as chairwoman of the Association of Historians of American Art and as U.S. liaison for the AAMC Foundation Engagement Program for International Curators. She was past visiting professor, Mellon Foundation Curatorial Track Ph.D., at the University of Delaware, and currently serves on the advisory boards of the Art Center at Vassar College and the Smithsonian Archives of American Art Journal. Marley holds a B.A. in Art History from Vassar College, an M.A. in Museum Studies from the University of Southern California and a Ph.D. from the University of Delaware.
Ashley Householder, “Becoming Vanderbilt”
is curator of exhibitions for The Preservation Society of Newport County, responsible for developing and producing in-house, borrowed and traveling exhibitions that are displayed in the Galleries at Rosecliff. Her 2019 exhibition, “John James Audubon: Obsession Untamed,” explored the legacy of the great American artist and naturalist, while her 2018 exhibition, “Bohemian Beauty: The Aesthetic Movement and Oscar Wilde’s Newport” examined the ideas embodied by the artists, poets and thinkers popular during this important era of 19th-century artistic experimentation. Her 2017 exhibition, “Pierre Cardin: 70 Years of Innovation,” was seen by more than 115,000 visitors during its nine-month run and featured 42 original designs from Cardin’s private archives in Paris.
Householder holds an M.A. in the History of Decorative Arts from The New School’s Parsons School of Design and has worked in exhibitions, collections and programs at the National Building Museum, the White House, Decatur House Museum and the Smithsonian Institution, all in Washington, D.C. Prior to coming to Rhode Island, she worked in arts publishing in New York, serving as a buyer for Rizzoli Bookstore.
Beverley Cook, “Art & the Vote: The Museum of London Suffragette Collections”
the curator of social and working history at the Museum of London, where she has worked since 1986. She specializes in London's history from the period 1880s-1918, with particular interest in the suffragette campaign, poverty and east London.
She was lead curator for the refurbishment of the museum's Victorian Walk gallery in 2000 and the People's City Gallery in 2010 and has curated and co-curated a number of temporary exhibitions at the museum including Shades of Suffragette Militancy in 2018, Dickens & London in 2011 and an exhibition on Michael Caine in 2013. Her recent projects include offering historical support and advice to a suffragette feature film starring Carey Mulligan.
Margaret K. Hofer, “Clara Driscoll and the Women of Tiffany Studios”
Margaret K. Hofer
has been the vice president and museum director for the New-York Historical Society since 2015, having previously served as curator at the institution for more than 20 years. She is recognized for her scholarship on women in lesser-known pockets of New York history.
In 2007, she co-curated “A New Light on Tiffany: Clara Driscoll and the Tiffany Girls” at the historical society’s museum, a show about the women who cut glass for Tiffany Studios’ famed lamps, windows, mosaics and enamels. The exhibit continued to tour the world through 2012. She has been responsible for numerous other exhibitions and has organized the New-York Historical Society’s Tiffany galleries as well as other permanent collection reinstallations.
Hofer is the author of five exhibition catalogues and has contributed to numerous journals and magazines, including The Magazine Antiques and Antiques & Fine Art. She regularly lectures at conferences and museums across the country.
She received her B.A. from Yale University and M.A. from the University of Delaware's Winterthur Program in Early American Culture. Hofer has previously worked at the International Center of Photography, taught courses at New York University and consulted for other cultural institutions in the region.
Elizabeth A. Williams and Wai Yee Chiong, “Sisterly Pursuits: Lucy Truman Aldrich and Abby Aldrich Rockefeller at the RISD Museum”
Elizabeth A. Williams, the David and Peggy Rockefeller Curator of Decorative Arts and Design, joined the RISD Museum in 2013 after serving as assistant curator of Decorative Arts and Design at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri.
At the RISD Museum, she co-curated “Making It in America” and “Arlene Shechet: Meissen Recast,” and oversaw the reinstallation of the glass, ceramics and silver galleries and decorative arts in the European and modern/contemporary galleries. She recently curated the exhibition “Gorham Silver: Designing Brilliance 1850-1970.”
Williams holds a Ph.D. in Art History from the Kress Foundation Department of Art History at the University of Kansas, an M.A. in Art History from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, and a B.S. in Architectural Studies from the University of Missouri-Columbia.
Wai Yee Chiong is the assistant curator of Asian art at the RISD Museum. Prior to that, she was the Cunningham Curatorial Fellow of Japanese Art at Harvard Art Museums. She has held curatorial, research, and teaching positions at Princeton University (where she received her M.A. and Ph.D. in Art History), Gakushuin University in Tokyo and the Percival David Foundation of Chinese Art in London.
Wai Yee also received an M.A. in History of Art and Archaeology from the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, and a B.A. in Economics and Spanish from Middlebury College.
Richard Guy Wilson, “Edith Wharton’s Revolution: Architecture, Interiors and Fiction”
Richard Guy Wilson
is the Commonwealth Professor in Architectural History at the University of Virginia and received the university’s Outstanding Professor award in 2001. A frequent lecturer for universities, museums and professional groups, he has been a television commentator for PBS and A&E, including “America’s Castles.” Wilson has served as a curator for major museum exhibitions and published 16 books, including “The American Renaissance,” “McKim, Mead & White, Architects” and “Edith Wharton at Home.” He directs the Victorian Society in America’s 19th Century Summer School in Newport.