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Latin American Art History

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Submitted on January 10, 2022 - 2:44pm
Two headshots of new faculty
Jennifer Baez and Caitlin Earley

The School of Art + Art History + Design is very pleased to announce the hiring of Jennifer Baez and Caitlin Earley for two Latin American art history positions.

Estelle Lingo, Professor and Chair of Art History describes this exciting dual hire:
"This is a transformative moment for the Division of Art History. Having Dr. Baez and Dr. Earley join our faculty will consolidate a hemispheric, transregional, and expansive program in the Arts of the Americas unmatched by any art history faculty in the U.S. This exciting double recruitment will also enable an expansion of our program in Early Modern Art to include the "Mediterratlantic” field, an emerging global vision of early modern studies that addresses the multi-directional influences between Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, Africa, and the Americas. At a time when the field of art history is taking significant steps to address its structural and methodological Eurocentrism, these wonderful additions to our faculty will position the Division at the leading edge of our rapidly evolving discipline."

Baez and Earley will join the UW faculty in September 2022 as tenure-track assistant professors.

Jennifer Baez

Jennifer Baez specializes in the visual and material culture of colonial Latin America and the African diaspora, with a focus on the Caribbean in the long eighteenth century. Her research is on miracle-working icons and traditions, and she is especially interested in how origin stories, historical memory, and collective subjectivities were formed in extractive, Black Atlantic geographies. Her teaching and writing interests extend to the present to consider afro-Latinx artists engaging decolonial feminism and vernacular knowledges to contest public and historical representation. She received her PhD in art history from Florida State University in 2021 with a dissertation on a series of late eighteenth-century painted cycles depicting miracles of the Virgin of Altagracia for the sanctuary of San Dionisio in the villa of Higüey in Hispaniola. The project is a microhistory exploring intersections between Marian devotion, artistic practice, race, and the creation of Spanish Creole origin stories. Her work has been published in several journals and academic platforms including Small Axe, Arts, Smarthistory, and in the Art & Architecture ePortal of Yale University Press (forthcoming). She has received numerous grants to pursue her research in the Dominican Republic and Spain, such as a Carl & Marilynn Thoma Foundation award. She was selected to participate in the 6th annual Curatorial Foundation Seminar hosted by the Mellon Foundation and the Center for Curatorial Leadership in New York City, and she currently teaches History of African Art at FSU.

Caitlin Earley

Caitlin Earley is an art historian who studies the art of Latin America with a particular focus on ancient Maya sculpture. She has performed field research in Belize, Guatemala and Mexico, working most extensively with archaeological and museum collections in Chiapas, Mexico. She has held research fellowships at Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection in Washington, DC and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, NY. Earley earned her PhD at the University of Texas at Austin, and is currently completing her first book, Comitán: Sculpture and Identity on the Ancient Maya Frontier, with the support of the ACLS H. and T. King Fellowship in Ancient American Art and Culture.

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