Current Research

UCD School of Art History & Cultural Policy is a research-active School, committed to high-quality research-led teaching. Below is information regarding some of our current research activity and projects.

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Funded by UCD Humanities Institute Research Projects 2017-2020, this project is lead by Dr Emily Mark-FitzGerald and Dr Emilie Pine (UCD School of English, Drama and Film).

Media, Encounter Witness: Troubling Pasts project will be a broad consideration of the aesthetic, political and ethical issues of ‘seeing’ and mediality. Our definition of ‘media’ of witness includes photography, cinema, television, visual art, theatre, digital texts, printed texts, material culture, spectacle, and the body in performance. We begin from the proposition that cultural meaning cannot be understood as separate from forms of production. The technological, aesthetic, and social dimensions of such productions are at the centre of this series’ investigations into how ‘witnessing’ is mediated and enacted. Read more >>>

Funded by UCD Humanities Institute Research Projects 2017-2020, this project is lead by Prof Kathleen James-Chakraborty and Prof Douglas Smith (UCD School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics).

This research project aims to question some of the ways in which relations between mainstream Western and supposedly peripheral cultures have been dominated by a one-way model of innovation and exportation, flowing irreversibly from Western Europe and North America outwards towards other regions. The main focus is an alternative reading of the history of modern architecture in its relationship not to the ‘core’ Western nations in which it initially developed but rather to the ‘outlying’ regions (such as Scandinavia, South Asia and South America) that protected and promoted an international style when it fell out of favour at ‘home’. Read more >>>

Connecting Early Medieval European Collections (CEMEC) is an EU-funded digital collaborative project between eight European museum collections, seven universities and six technical partners that aims to examine the connectivity between Early Medieval objects and the objects’ regions of origin with the aid of innovative digital technologies. This Digital Culture EA-EU Creative Cultures project includes input from Ireland, though a collaboration between UCD School of Art History and Cultural Policy, the National Museum of Ireland and Waterford Museum of Treasures. Read more >>>

Philip Cottrell is currently involved in a collaborative project with the National Portrait Gallery, London which involves the creation of an online database devoted to an unpublished survey of over 200 British art collections carried out by Sir George Scharf in 1856/ 7. This arose from Scharf's stewardship of the largest exhibition of European art ever staged, the 1857 Manchester Art Treasures Exhibition - a watershed event of considerable interest for scholars of British and Irish collecting and art historians generally. Read more >>>

The social crises of 19th century Ireland — famine, displacement, and mass migration — coincided with the development of new forms of mass visualisation. This research by Emily Mark-FitzGerald addresses how Irish poverty was made visible as consequence of these technologies that develop rapidly across the span of only a few decades, including illustrated periodicals, photography, the magic lantern, stereoscopy, and early forms of cinema, for both domestic and diasporic audiences. Read more >>>

Remembering Modernism and Building Memory in the Federal Republic of Germany is the working title of a forthcoming book by Kathleen James-Chakraborty, which addresses the role of ruins, fragments, and absence in churches, museums, and memoryscapes created in the Federal Republic of Germany since the end of World War II.   Read more >>>