Directory

Wendy Castenell

Wendy Castenell

Assistant Professor of Art History, African American Art

Education

  • PhD, University of Missouri-Columbia, 2012

Research Areas

  • African American Art

About


Dr. Castenell joined the faculty in the fall of 2015. Prior to coming to the Capstone, she taught at Alabama State University in Montgomery, Alabama; University of Missouri, Columbia; and University of Massachusetts Amherst. She teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in African American art. Her research focuses on African American art; portraiture; gender studies; representations of race and ethnicity in American visual culture; film history and theory; and cross-cultural contact. Her current book project is Creole Identity in the Art of the American South: Louisiana from the Colonial Era to Reconstruction, under contract with Routledge/Taylor & Francis. Dr. Castenell serves on the board of the journal Global Nineteenth-Century Studies published by Edinburgh University Press.

Courses Taught

  • ARH 291: Special Topics in African American Art (The Black Arts Movement)
  • ARH 377: American Painting and Sculpture
  • ARH 378: Art of the African Diaspora
  • ARH 380: American Art, 1880-1945
  • ARH 388: African American Art
  • ARH 488: Special Topics in African American Art (African American Portraits)
  • ARH 577: Turn-of-the-Century American Spectacles and Race
  • ARH 577: African American Film
  • ARH 577: African American Photography

News & Media

Read current news and features about Dr. Castenell here.

Check out this interview with Dr. Castenell about how she became interested in art history and about her current research!

Wendy Castenell | Q&A with A&S from UA College of Arts & Sciences on Vimeo.

Dr. Wendy Castenell views Jackson Pollock's painting, "Number 1A, 1948" at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.Publications, Recent and Forthcoming

  • Creole Identity in the Art of the American South: Louisiana from the Colonial Era to Reconstruction, spring 2022, Routledge/Taylor & Francis.
  • “The Architects of Reconstruction: Alcès Family Portraits as Emblems of Afro-Creole Leadership,” Panorama: Journal of the Association of Historians of American Art 6, no. 1 (Spring 2020).
  • Book Review of Kymberly N. Pinder. Painting the Gospel: Black Public Art and Religion in Chicago. (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2016), CAA.Reviews, February 15, 2018
  • Book Review of Thomas Day: Master Craftsman and Free Man of Color by Patricia Phillips Marshall and Jo Ramsey Leimenstoll, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 70:2 (2011): 260-261
  • “Urban Development in New Orleans, World War II to Present,” New Orleans Historic and Cultural Review, Vol. 1, No. 1 (Summer 2007): 55-65, http://www.suno.edu/docs/NOHCR%20Volume%20One%20Issue%20One%20WEB.pdf, Southern University of New Orleans

Presentations and Invited Lectures

  • “’Ashur Moses Nathan and Son’ by French painter Jules Lion,” Louisiana Purchase Auction, Neal Auction Company, New Orleans, November 11, 2021.
  • “Re-presenting and Reckoning with Early American Art,” Crystal Bridges Museum Tyson Fellows Virtual Roundtable, October 12, 2021.
  • “Reel to Real: The Trope of ‘Authenticity’ and Indigenous Sovereignty in The Invaders (1912),” Oklahoma State University, Art History Roundtable series, October 15, 2020.
  • The Architects of Reconstruction: Alcès Family Portraits as Emblems of Afro-Creole Leadership,” University of the Arts, Philadelphia, Pa., October 6, 2020.
  • “The Performance of Racial Identity in a Spanish Colonial Portrait from Louisiana,” CAA Annual Conference, New York, N.Y., February 13-16, 2019.
  • “’The Louisiana Experiment’: Alcès Portraits and Afro-Creole Leadership during Reconstruction,” SECAC, Birmingham, Ala., October 17-20, 2018
  • “Mutable Identities: The Performance of ‘Whiteness’ in a Colonial Louisiana Portrait,” Portraiture Conference, Centre for Visual Arts and Culture, Durham University, Durham, U.K., July 13-15, 2018.
  • “Reenacting Defeat: Wild West Shows as Spectacles of White Supremacy,” Nineteenth-Century Studies Association Conference, Philadelphia, Pa., March 15-17, 2018.
  • Moderator, “Views of the American West,” Nineteenth-Century Studies Association Conference, Philadelphia, Pa., March 15-17, 2018.
  • “’The ineffaceable curse of Cain’: The Visual Culture of Gender, Race, and Caste in Antebellum New Orleans” invited lecture, Auburn University Montgomery, Montgomery, Ala., April 13, 2017.
  • “Performing ‘Whiteness’: Racial Ambiguity in Spanish Colonial Louisiana,” Blake-More Godwin Lecture, Department of Art History and Archaeology, University of Missouri – Columbia, Columbia, Mo., March, 16, 2017.
  • “Commemorating Caste: Metoyer Family Portraits as Agents of Social Equality in Antebellum Louisiana,” Nineteenth-Century Studies Association Conference, Charleston, S.C., February 2-4, 20017.
  • “The Politics of Style: Free Artists of Color in Antebellum New Orleans,” SECAC, Roanoke, Va., October 19-22, 2016.
  • “Cultivating Active Citizenship Through the Arts in the 21st Century,” Co-presented with Dr. Lucy Curzon, Blackburn Institute Symposium, The University of Alabama, August 27, 2016.
  • “’The ineffaceable curse of Cain’: The Visual Culture of Gender, Race, and Caste in Antebellum New Orleans,” Diane Legan Howard Art History Lecture Series, Mississippi University for Women, Columbus, Miss., March 8, 2016.
  • “Celluloid Sovereignty: Representations of Native Americans and Treaty Discourse in The Invaders,” Branding the American West Symposium, Brigham Young University Museum of Art, Provo, Utah, March 4-5, 2016.
  • “Virtuous Sinners: Racial Iconography in Portraits of New Orleans’ Free Women of Color,” SECAC, Pittsburgh, Pa., October 21-24, 2015
  • “Iconography and Mercurial Racial Identity in Jacques Amans’ Creole Woman in a Red Turban (1840),” Nineteenth-Century Studies Association Conference, Chicago, Ill., March 20-22, 2014
  • “Hybridity, Creole Identity, and Portraits by Free Artists of Color in Antebellum New Orleans,” College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences Symposium, Alabama State University, Montgomery, Ala., October 31, 2013
  • “The Politics of Style: French Academic Style as a Statement of Creole Identity by New Orleans’ Free Artists of Color,” Nineteenth-Century Studies Association Annual Conference, Fresno, Calif., March 9, 2013
  • “Native Americans, Sovereignty, and Representation in Thomas H. Ince’s The Invaders (1912),” Native American and Indigenous Studies Association Annual Conference, Sacramento, Calif., May 20, 2011.
  • Recent Fellowships and Awards
  • Finalist, Terra Foundation Visiting Professorship in American Art, Oxford University, Oxford, U.K., AY 2017-2018

Recent Curatorial Experience

  • Co-Curator with Emily Bibb, “BAM!: Black Panther and the Black Arts Movement in the Paul R. Jones Collection,” Paul R. Jones Museum of American Art, Tuscaloosa, Ala., summer 2018
  • Curatorial Supervisor, “Color by Color,” Paul R. Jones Museum of American Art, Tuscaloosa, Ala., spring 2018
  • Curator, Paul R. Jones Collection of American Art 10th Anniversary Show (Title: TBD), Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, Atlanta, Ga., spring 2018
  • Curatorial Supervisor, “Black is Beautiful,” Paul R. Jones Gallery of American Art, Tuscaloosa, Ala., spring 2016