Personal profile

Personal profile

I learned Chinese painting from the late James Cahill at the University of California, Berkeley. While I was a graduate student, I also had the great fortune of studying with Tu Wei-ming, Cyril Birch, and the late Edward H. Schafer. After spending three years in Japan as a Research Fellow at Kyoto University, I completed my dissertation on the late Ming artist Chen Hongshou (1598/99-1652). I have taught at Grinnell College, the University of Chicago, and, briefly, at Stanford University. In 1995, I came to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Research Interests

Seventeenth-century Chinese painting and woodblock-printed books

Professional Information

My research interests lie primarily in seventeenth-century Chinese painting and woodblock-printed books. In this context, I have focused on themes that engage self-representation, theories of vision and ways of seeing, as well as the interrelationship between words and images, painting and print. Recently, I am rethinking the traditional Chinese garden from the perspective of the environmental humanities. I am also researching a new book entitled "Engaging Artifice: Chen Hongshou (1598/99-1652) and the Illustrated Book."


University of California, Berkeley, MA (1977) and PhD (1987), in Art History

Honors & Awards

Arthur Kingsley Porter Prize, College Art Association, January 1995, for “Elegant or Common? Chen Hongshou’s Birthday Presentation Pictures and His Professional Status,” Art Bulletin 76, 2 (June 1994): 227-300.


J. Paul Getty Postdoctoral Fellow in the History of Art and Humanities (1988; declined); J. Paul Getty Postdoctoral Fellow in the History of Art and Humanities (1992-93); Senior Fellow, Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. (2017-18)


EALC 114: Introduction to East Asian Art; EALC 402: Ways of Seeing in Edo Japan; EALC 403: Word and Image in Chinese Art; EALC 501: Graduate Seminar in Chinese Art (on various topics); forthcoming, "Art, Society, Ecology."

Office Address

MC-590, 408 E. Peabody Dr.

Office Phone