Cosmin Minea

Cosmin Minea

Department of Art History, Curating and Visual Studies
Doctoral researcher
Teaching Assistant

Contact details

PhD Title: Architecture, Heritage and Nation in Modern Romania (1860-1910).
Supervisor: Professor Matthew Rampley and Kenneth Morrison (De Montfort University)
PhD History of Art


  • 2013-2014: MA in Central European History, Central European University, Budapest,
  • 2009-2012: B.A., Department of History and Theory of the Arts, National University of Arts Bucharest
  • 2009-2011: International Relations, University of Bucharest, Faculty of Political Science
  • 2006-2009:  B.A., University of Bucharest, Faculty of Journalism and Communication Sciences


I have substantial research experience in the history of modern architecture in 19th and 20th century East-Central Europe, focusing in particular on Romania. I am mostly interested in the ways in which the cultural heritage of the region was used by local and European artists and intellectuals to create modern buildings and to shape national identities. My academic specialization is modern East-Central European art, but my research also embraces broader issues concerning national ideologies, the Europeanization process, international relations, and the social and cultural history of the region.


  • 2017 and 2019: Teaching Assistant, Department of History, University of Birmingham. Module: The Making of the Contemporary World (two seminar groups per week)
  • 2016 - 2018: Teaching Assistant, Department of Art History, Curating and Visual Studies, University of Birmingham. Module: Historical Concepts in Art History (first year module, one-three seminar groups per week for three consecutive years).


The thesis analyses the European-wide networks of architects and intellectuals that led to the creation, restoration and promotion of a national architectural heritage in late 19thcentury Romania. Thus, a nation-building phenomenon appears the creation of local and foreign actors that acted between European cultural centres and the context of a newly created nation-state. Theories of nationalism and modernisations in East Central Europe as well as the concept of "national" architectural style in the region will be brought to firstly expose the constructed nature of concepts like Romanian art and heritage, and then to reveal the dynamic relations between foreign and local actors that complicates and problematizes the straightforward concept of Europeanisation.

The broader goal of the thesis is to depict the way in which the transfers of expertise and ideas between Romania and Western Europe could defined national cultural identities and offer a way for analysing nation-building processes in a transnational paradigm. 

Other activities

Conference papers

  • 2019:  Monarchy and Modernity since 1500, University of Cambridge.Paper: The Romanian Monarchy and the Restoration of Historical Monuments in the Late 19th Century
  • 2018: Society for Romanian Studies Biennial Conference, Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest.  Paper: ‘Romanian Architectural Heritage in the Decades Before 1918’
  • 2018: World Fairs and International Exhibitions: National self-profiling in an internationalist context, 1851-1940, University of Amsterdam. Organisers: Joep Leerssen and Eric Storm. Paper: Romanian architecture between Bucharest and the Paris UniversalExhibitions of 1889 and 1900.
  • 2017: Ruler Visibility, Modernity, and the Ethnonational Mindset, Workshop at the Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies (AIAS), Denmark Paper: ‘Old monuments for modern times: King Carol and the Romanian architectural heritage in the late 19th century’
  • 2017: International Forum for Doctoral Candidates in East European Art History, Humboldt University, Berlin Paper: ‘Europe in the Balkans: The Creation of a National Architectural Heritage in Modern Romania (1875-1918)’
  • 2017: The Graduate Centre for Europe (GCfE) seminar: Echoes of Empire in European architecture, history and politics. Paper: Architecture and Cultural Colonialism at the Fringes of Empires
  • 2016 Art and Politics in Europe in the Modern Period, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb, CroatiaPaper: “National Architectural Heritage in Late 19th Century Romania”
  • 2016: International Postgraduate Conference on Central and Eastern Europe, School of Slavonic and East European Studies, UCL, London. Paper: “Architecture and Cultural Colonialism: the Activity of André Lecomte du Nouÿ in late 19th Century Romania and its Global Context”.
  • 2014: Budapest-Vienna Special Seminar: Imperial Metropoles - Habsburg and Ottoman Cities in the Long Nineteenth Century, Institute for East European History, University of Vienna and CEU Budapest. Location: Vienna, Austria. Paper: “Balkan Countries Paradoxical Architecture at the Paris Universal Exhibition in 1900”
  • 2013: Ephemeral Architecture in Central-Eastern Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary Paper: “Creating a National Architecture: the Pavilions of the Balkan Countries at two 19th Century Universal Exhibitions”


  • (in preparation) ‘Ion Mincu (1852-1912) and the Romanian Style in Architecture’, to be submitted to a peer-reviewed journal in April 2019.
  • (forthcoming) ‘Romanian architecture at Paris World Fairs of 1889 and 1900’ in Joep Leerssen and Eric Storm, eds., World Fairs and International Exhibitions: National self-profiling in an internationalist context, 1851-1940, (submitted to BRILL, 2019)
  • (forthcoming) “Between Europe and the Balkans: the Romanian Architectural Heritage”, in Dragan Damjanović et all. (eds), Art and Politics in Europe in the Modern Period, (University of Zagreb, 2018). 
  • Curtea de Argeș Monastery and Romanian Architectural Heritage in Late 19th Century” in Studies in History and Theory of Architecture, University of Architecture, Bucharest, Vol. 4, 2016.
  • “A National Image in Front of the World: The Balkan Country’s Architecture at the Paris Universal Exhibition of 1889” in Miklos Szechely (ed), Ephemeral Architecture in Central-Eastern Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries, (forthcoming with L'Harmattan, Paris, 2015).