2017 Summer Research Grant Scholar Profiles


Over 20 graduate students applied for summer research funding in 2017 to assist with travel related to thesis and dissertation topics. With the generous support of the Emerging Scholars Program through our members, the C.K. Williams Foundation, and the Marie and John Zimmermann Fund, we awarded grants to 8 projects that span five centuries of material culture and cover both sides of the Atlantic. We welcome additional donations to further the summer research program in the years to come.

Catherine Acosta, Master’s in History of Design and Curatorial Studies, Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

Catherine is researching the dinnerware designs of Viktor Schreckengost, an American industrial designer and ceramic sculptor. She will visit the Schreckengost archives at Cleveland State University to continue her ongoing studies on the artist’s influence on 20th-century dinnerware design.

Emily Anderson, PhD, Art History, University of Southern California

Exploring the materiality of bespoke books made in Italy from 1460–1600, Emily’s dissertation focuses on the unique character of such objects. She will travel to Cambridge University and the British Library to examine books that have been hand illuminated, printed on blue paper or vellum, or printed with gold ink.

Gabriella Angeloni, PhD, History, University of South Carolina

Gabriella’s research highlights the impact of books on the lives of southerners in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. She will visit Middleton Place and Drayton Hall to view their impressive collections of account books, papers, and furnishings.

Margot Bernstein, PhD, Art History, Columbia University

Margot’s dissertation seeks to reveal how portraits by Louis Carrogis, called Carmontelle (1717–1806) expressed the Enlightenment of subjects through the depiction of their surroundings. Her already extensive research will be complemented by a trip to the J. Paul Getty Museum to study objects that played a crucial role in the artist’s portraits.

Janine Yorimoto Boldt, PhD, American Studies, College of William & Mary

Analyzing portraiture produced in Virginia from 1676–1776, Janine’s dissertation considers how colonists negotiated conflicting roles as both agents of empire and colonial subjects. Janine will travel to various locations in England in an effort to build upon her ongoing research in the southern United States.

Candice Candeto, Master’s, Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, University of Delaware

Candice is researching a number of extant pieces attributed to the Antebellum cabinetmaker Robert Stewart, who lived and worked in the Mississippi River town of Natchez, MS. She will visit the Louisiana State University Library and the Historic Natchez Foundation to study documents and furniture related to Stewart’s shop.

Alisa Chiles, PhD, History of Art, University of Pennsylvania

Alisa’s dissertation explores the enduring opposition between France and Germany in the first decades of the 20th century as seen through each country’s practice of the decorative arts and architectural design. Alisa will travel to Paris to view primary documents at the Musée des Arts décoratifs, the Bibliothèque nationale de France, and the Bibliothèque Kandinsky.

Rachel Harmeyer, PhD, Art History, Rice University

Rachel’s dissertation focuses on the impact of the British Neoclassical painter Angelica Kauffman (1741–1807) by way of studying decorative objects incorporating copies of her paintings. She plans to visit Philadelphia to examine a chimneypiece at the Philadelphia Museum of Art that features painted copper plates derived from Kaufman’s work.

Courtney Wilder, PhD, History of Art, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Courtney’s dissertation investigates eccentric French and British fabric dress designs made during the early 19th-century. This summer she will travel to Scotland and Northern England to study various primary sources, including early photographs, documents, and textile design pattern books.


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