My research centres on visual culture in Britain and Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries, with a particular focus on the relationships between art writing, display and aesthetic experience. Beyond a strictly geographic and historical context, my work considers how text intervenes in an audience’s experience of art objects, and I’m interested in tracing the diverse range of texts implicated in this dynamic.
My work to date has centred on the relationship between art writing and display practices at the fin de siècle, culminating in a monograph, Performance and Spectatorship in Edwardian Art Writing (Palgrave, forthcoming 2019), which uses a phenomenological-semiotic methodology to explore the embodied or performative nature of reading about art.
Ongoing research will consider the means by which texts frame or condition display and reception of 20th century modernism in local or peripheral contexts. This work engages in debate about the formation of cultural identities, and considers the role played by word-image relationships in mediating between the local and transnational.
This research on word and image also feeds into my pedagogic interest in the impact of digital technology on the reading and understanding of art history in higher education.