Department of Art and Art History News

Dr. Kara Kelley Hallmark Receives TAEA Award

Tue. October 30, 2012

Dr. Kara Kelley Hallmark (Lecturer in Art Education) was recognized by the Texas Art Education Association (TAEA) with the annual award given to one member of the Art Education Higher Education community in Texas. The award will be presented to Dr. Hallmark at the annual convention in San Antonio on November 16.

The Department Welcomes Dr. Astrid Runggaldier

Tue. October 30, 2012

Astrid Runggaldier

Dr. Astrid Runggaldier joins the Department of Art and Art History this fall as a Senior Lecturer with a teaching focus on Mesoamerican cultures. Through the Mesoamerica Center, she will lead the courses of UT’s semester-long Study Abroad program at Casa Herrera in Antigua, Guatemala.

Originally from Italy, Runggaldier is an anthropological archaeologist interested in ancient Mesoamerican cultures and in particular in Maya architecture, households, and built environments. In 2009 she received her Ph.D in Archaeology from Boston University with a dissertation entitled “Memory and Materiality in Monumental Architecture: Construction and Reuse of a Late Preclassic Maya Palace at San Bartolo, Guatemala.” She has been in excavations in Guatemala and Belize, as well as in the northeastern US, Cyprus, and Turkey. Runggaldier has worked at San Bartolo, Guatemala since 2003, where her research has explored palaces, elite and ordinary residences from the Preclassic to Late Classic periods. Currently she is also involved in the Brea Project in the middle Belize River valley, where she directs an archaeological laboratory and pursues the investigation of Preclassic settlement.

PhD Candidate Awarded Residence as Visiting Scholar at USMEX

Thu. October 25, 2012


Alexis Salas (PhD Candidate in Art History) has been awarded a residence from September 2012 - June 2013 as a Visiting Scholar at The Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies (USMEX) at the University of California, San Diego. The largest residential fellowship program in the United States for research on Mexico, each year USMEX brings together scholars from the social sciences, history, and related field to research and participate in the seminars, lectures, and workshops at the Center and at academic institutions in the San Diego/ Tijuana border area. The Visiting Scholars Program accepts applicants with their own funding to become part of the USMEX community and provides a space to conduct research and writing. This year the Center has four visiting scholars, including two visiting professors and two graduate students working on their dissertations. Salas is currently authoring the dissertation, “Performing the Making: Uses of Public Spheres of Collaboration by Artists in Mexico City, 1993-2003.” Her research considers the globalization of art, public spheres of collaboration, as well as the work of art and of the artist in dialogue with how art is defined.

Fine Arts Library Receives Collection of Noted Art Scholar Houlberg

Thu. October 18, 2012



A collection of around 1,200 books and catalogues that constituted the personal library of Marilyn Houlberg – Professor Emeritus of Art History, Theory, and Criticism at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago – and served as a resource for her research in the arts and anthropology of West Africa and Haiti, as well as related studies of popular culture in the United States, will become part of the collections at the Fine Arts Library.The College of Fine Arts has received a collection of materials from a noted scholar and academician in the arts and culture of Haitian Vodou.

Houlberg was an artist and leading expert on the arts and culture of Haiti and West Africa. A prolific writer on Haitian Vodou and its relationship to art, Houlberg contributed essays to a number of journals including “New Observations,” “African Arts” and “Aperture," and co-curated groundbreaking exhibitions on Haitian and African art, including the traveling exhibitions “Sacred Arts of Haitian Vodou” and “Haiti: Vodou Visionaries.”

John Yancey, John D. Murchison Professor in Art at the university, says Houlberg’s influence cannot be overstated.

“Marilyn unveiled the complexity, power, and wonder of art and culture of Africa and the African diaspora,” says Yancey. “Her non-conformist aesthetics opened doors of perception for scholars, collectors and most importantly, for the artists themselves.”

Jules Buck Jones exhibits in Houston and Dallas

Mon. October 15, 2012

Jules Buck Jones
Primordial #2, 2012, 30x22 inches

Alum Jules Buck Jones (MFA in Studio Art, 2009) is showing a new series of mix-media drawings in an exhibit titled The Hundred-Handed Ones at Conduit Gallery in Dallas through November 24.

And for those attending the Texas Contemporary Art Fair in Houston, be on the lookout for Jones' installation Vulpecula in one of the main corridors. A kinetic piece that includes video and sound components, it "evokes sentient force in nature, myths of forest gods, apocalyptic fantasies, and fear of a vengeful natural world."