Location: Bowdoin / Pamela M. Fletcher

Art History

Pamela M. Fletcher

Professor of Art History

Contact Information

pfletche@bowdoin.edu
207-798-7158
Art History

Visual Arts Center - 209



Teaching this semester

ARTH 2520. Modern Art

A study of the modernist movement in visual art in Europe and the Americas beginning with post-impressionism and examining in succession: expressionism fauvis, cubism, futurism, constructivism, Dada, surrealism, the American affinities of these movements, and the Mexican muralists. Modernism is analyzed in terms of the problems presented by its social situation; its relation to other elements of culture; its place in the historical tradition of Western art; and its invocation of archaic, primitive, and Asian cultures.

ARTH 3530. Painted Fictions: Narrative and British Art

Is a picture worth a thousand words? If so, why? Questions whether pictures appeal more directly to our emotions or imaginations, or if they need words to be comprehensible. Examines the complex and sometimes competitive relationship between visual images and the texts that surround and support them -- including literary sources, invented narratives, titles, captions, art criticism, and catalogue entries -- in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British art. Artists considered include: William Hogarth, Joshua Reynolds, the Pre-Raphaelites, James McNeil Whistler, and Walter Sickert; texts may include writings by Charles Dickens, Henry James, Oscar Wilde, and Virginia Woolf.

Teaching next semester

ARTH 1020. That's Not Art!

Contemporary art can be challenging. Black squares, white cubes, appropriated advertising images, activist posters, street art, and performances all pose viewers questions of intention, interpretation, and evaluation. Why did twentieth- and twenty-first-century artists redefine traditional media and invent new forms of artistic practice and experience? How do we know when something is “art”? How do we know if it is good art? Topics covered include: abstraction, appropriation, performance, activism, the workings of the contemporary art market, and theories of value and taste.

ARTH 2560/GSWS 2258. Women, Gender, and Sexuality in Western European and American Art, 1500 to Present

Provides an introduction to the history of women as creators, patrons, and audiences of art in Western Europe and the United States from the Renaissance to the present, and explores methods and approaches to visual art that focus on questions of gender and sexuality in an intersectional context. Artists considered may include Artemisia Gentileschi, Angelica Kauffman, Edmonia Lewis, Mary Cassatt, Georgia O’Keeffe, Claude Cahun, Frida Kahlo, Lee Krasner, Judy Chicago, Adrian Piper, Shirin Nashat, and Kara Walker.



Pamela M. Fletcher - Bowdoin College Art History

Education

  • Columbia University, Ph.D., 1998
  • Columbia University, Certificate in Feminist Theory, 1994
  • Bowdoin College, A.B., 1989

Research Interests

  • Victorian and Edwardian Painting
  • Modernism and Exhibition Culture
  • The Art Market
  • The Problem Picture

Teaching

Pablo Picasso: Woman with Guitar.Professor Fletcher teaches courses ranging from Eighteenth-Century Art to Contemporary Art and Theory, with a particular focus on exhibition culture and British art. She has offered advanced seminars on the History of the Commercial Art Gallery; Modernism and the Nude; and The Pre-Raphaelites.


Julia Margaret Cameron: Maude.Classes often take advantage of the rich holdings of the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, in particular their collections of Victorian photography, modernist works on paper and contemporary art.

Interview

Los Angeles Review of Books: The Digital in the Humanities: An Interview with Pamela Fletcher. June, 2016

Books

Co-editor (with Anne Helmreich), The Rise of the Modern Art Market in London, 1850-1939. Manchester and New York: Manchester University Press,  Fall 2011.

Narrating Modernity: The British Problem Picture, 1895-1914 (Ashgate, 2003).

The Rise of the Modern Art Market in London, 1850-1939. Manchester and New York: Manchester University Press    Narrating Modernity: The British Problem Picture, 1895-1914, by Pamela M. Fletcher

Digital Project

London Gallery Project, co-authored with David N. Israel, 2007; Revised September 2012.
http://learn.bowdoin.edu/fletcher/london-gallery/

Articles and Chapters

“Reader, Viewer, Spectator, Beholder: Response,” Victorian Studies Volume 59, no. 3 (Spring 2017): 457-462.

“Reflections on Digital Art History,” caa.reviews. June 18, 2015.   http://www.caareviews.org/reviews/2726
Translated into Croatian: “Razmišljanja o digitalnoj povijesti umjetnosti” Život umjetnosti 99 (2016): 20-27 (https://zivotumjetnosti.ipu.hr/)

co-authored with Crystal Hall, “Digital Humanities and the Common Good.” Maine Policy Review 24.1 (2015): 124 -131.

Human Character and Character-Reading at the Edwardian Royal Academy,” Visual Culture in Britain 14, no. 1 (2013): 21-35.

Pamela Fletcher and Anne Helmreich, with David N. Israel and Seth Erickson. “Local/Global: Mapping Nineteenth-Century London’s Art Market,” Nineteenth-Century Art Worldwide 11, no. 3 (Autumn 2012) [http://19thc-artworldwide.org/index.php/autumn12/fletcher-helmreich-mapping-the-london-art-market (The first article published in NCAW’s Digital Humanities and Art History series, funded by the A. W. Mellon Foundation.)  2014 Association of Research Institutes in Art History Online Publishing Prize.  

“The Grand Tour on Bond Street: Cosmopolitanism and the Commercial Art Gallery in Victorian London,” Visual Culture in Britain, Summer 2011.

 “Happiness Lost: William Powell Frith and the Painting of Modern Life,” Nineteenth-Century Contexts 33, no. 2 (June 2011).

“‘To wipe a manly tear;’ The Aesthetics of Emotion in Victorian Narrative Painting,” Victorian Studies Volume 51, Number 3, Spring 2009Narrative Painting and Visual Gossip at the Early-Twentieth-Century Royal Academy,” Oxford Art Journal, 2009 32(2):243-262

“‘To wipe a manly tear;’ The Aesthetics of Emotion in Victorian Narrative Painting,” Victorian Studies Volume 51, Number 3, Spring 2009

co-authored with Anne Helmreich, “The Periodical and the Art Market: Investigating the ‘Dealer-Critic System’ in Victorian England,” Victorian Periodicals Review 41, no. 4 (Winter 2008): 323-51.

"Virtue, Vice, Sex, and Gossip: Narratives of Gender in Late Victorian and Edwardian Painting," Remapping British Art and Architecture Editors Dana Arnold, and David Peters Corbett. Commissioned for Blackwell; forthcoming.

"Creating the French Gallery: Ernest Gambart and the Rise of the Commercial Art Gallery in Mid-Victorian London," Nineteenth-Century Art Worldwide, Volume 6, no. 1 (Spring 2007).

English Art, 1860-1914: Modern Artists and Identity"Consuming Modern Art: Metaphors of Gender, Commerce and Value in Late Victorian and Edwardian Art Criticism." Visual Culture in Britain, Volume 6 Issue 2, Winter 2005, pp 157-170.
Abstract »

"Masculinity, Money, and Modern Art: The Sentence of Death by John Collier." English Art, 1860-1914: Modern Artists and Identity. Eds. David Peters Corbett and Lara Perry (Manchester University Press, 2000).

Exhibitions, Encyclopedia Entries and Reviews

“John Ruskin: The Porta Della Carta,” catalogue entry, Why Draw? Prestel and the Bowdoin College Museum of Art,  2017.

Review of The Camden Town Group in Context, eds. Helena Bonett, Ysanne Holt and Jennifer Mundy (Tate Research Publication, 2012, http://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/camden-town-group). Art Bulletin, June 2017.

Review of John Paul M. Kanwit, Victorian Art Criticism and the Woman Writer (The Ohio State University Press, 2013). Victorian Studies 57/4 (Summer 2015): 706-708.

Review of Reading Victorian Illustration, 1855-1875: Spoils of the Lumber Room, Eds. Paul Goldman and Simon Cooke (Ashgate, 2012). The Journal of Pre-Raphaelite Studies 22 (Fall 2013): 107-110.

Review of Elizabeth A. Pergam, The Manchester Art Treasures Exhibition of 1857 (Ashgate, 2011). Nineteenth-Century Contexts 35, no. 1 (February 2013): 96-8.

Review of Amy Woodson-Boulton, Transformative Beauty: Art Museums in Industrial Britain (Stanford University Press, 2012). The Journal of British Studies 52, no.2   (April 2013): 567-9. 

“Victorians and Moderns” and four catalogue entries, Edwardian Opulence: British Art at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century. Exhibition catalogue. New Haven and London:        Yale University Press for the Yale Center for British Art, 2013. 99-107, 346-7, 355-6, 358. 

“On the Rise of the Commercial Art Gallery in London,” BRANCH: Britain, Representation, and Nineteenth-Century History Ed. Dino Franco Felluga. Extension of Romanticism and Victorianism on the Net. www. branchcollective.org. Posted February 27, 2012. [http://www.branchcollective.org/?ps_articles=pamela-fletcher-on-the-rise-of-the-commercial-art-gallery-in-london]

“William Maw Egley” and “Marcus Stone,” in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

Review of Katharine Lochnan and Carol Jacobi (eds.), Holman Hunt and the Pre-Raphaelite Vision  (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2009), Victorian Studies, 52, no. 3 (Spring 2010): 476-8.

Review of Peter Trippi and Elizabeth Prettejohn (eds.), J. W. Waterhouse: The Modern Pre-Raphaelite (Royal Academy Publishing, 2009), caa.reviews.

Review of Kimberly Rhodes, Ophelia and Victorian Visual Culture: Representing Body Politics in the Nineteenth Century (Ashgate, 2008), Journal of Pre-Raphaelite Studies,  Fall 2009.

Review of Lara Kriegel, Grand Designs: Labor, Empire and the Museum in Victorian Culture (Duke University Press, 2007), Historians of British Art Newsletter, 2008.

African American Lives (Oxford University Press, 2004), a collection of 600 biographies of notable African Americans, has just been published.Review of Alexander Sturgis, Rupert Christiansen, Lois Oliver, and Michael Wilson, Rebels and Martyrs: The Image of the Artist in the Nineteenth Century (London: National Gallery, Distributed by Yale University Press, 2006), Victorian Studies 50, no. 2 (Winter 2008): 318-9.

“Claude Phillips” and “D.S. MacColl,” Entries in The Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century Journalism, ed. Laurel Brake and Marysa Demoor (Ghent and London: Academia Press and the British Library), 2008.

Review of Tim Barringer, Men at Work: Art and Labour in Victorian Britain (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2005). caa.reviews, April 2007.

Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women's Studies"Edward Mitchell Bannister," in African American Lives.  Eds. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham. (Oxford University Press, 2004).

"Painting, Genres of," in The Encyclopedia of the Victorian Era. Editor James Eli Adams.  (Grolier Academic Press, 2004).

"Painting," and "The Politics of Representation," in The Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women. Editors Cheris Kramarae and Dale Spender.  (Routledge, 2000.)

The Post-Pre-Raphaelite Print: Etching, Illustration, Reproductive Engraving, and Photography in England in and around the 1860s"Illustration" and 15 catalogue entries in The Post-Pre-Raphaelite Print: Etching, Illustration, Reproductive Engraving, and Photography in England in and around the 1860s. Exhibition catalogue. New York: Wallach Art Gallery, Columbia University, 1995.

"The Victorians," exhibition review, Historians of Nineteenth-Century Art Newsletter, 4/1 (April 1997).


Exhibitions Curated at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art

‘We Never See Anything Clearly’: John Ruskin and Landscape Painting 1840s-1870s,   October-December 2012, Becker Gallery. Co-curated with Ursula Moreno-VanderLaan ‘13 and Benjamin Livingston ‘13, students in Art History 352: The Pre-Raphaelites.

Visual Conversations: A Study Gallery for Art History 100, Fall 2009, Shaw Ruddock Gallery. Co-curated with Professors Susan Wegner and De-nin Lee.

Becoming a (Woman) Artist, Fall 2007
Modernism and the Nude, Fall 2001.


Images:
Pablo Picasso - Spanish, 1881-1973
Still Life with Woman with Guitar (Nature Morte and Woman with a Guitar), 1921 - gouache on paper
Bequest of William H. Alexander, in memory of his friend, Howard Hoyt Shiras, M.D.
2003.11.61 Bowdoin College Museum of Art.

Julia Margaret Cameron - British, 1815-1879
Portrait of Maud. 1870-1872 - vintage albumen print from glass plate negative
Museum Purchase, Lloyd O. and Marjorie Strong Coulter Fund. Bowdoin College Museum of Art.

“Circulation,” Keynote Address, Art on the Move: A Conference on Mobility in the Long Nineteenth Century," University of Birmingham, UK, January 2018.

“Viewing Bodies: Looking at Art with William Powell Frith and Lawrence Alma-Tadema,” Interdisciplinary Nineteenth-Century Studies Annual Conference, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, March 2017.

“Mapping the Commercial Art Gallery in Nineteenth-Century London,” Cologne University, Cologne, Germany, December 2016.

“The Social Spaces of Victorian Realist Painting,” North American Victorian Studies Association Annual Conference, Phoenix, Arizona, November 2016.

Panelist, Art History in Digital Dimensions symposium, University of Maryland, October 2016. (Invitation only symposium, sponsored by the Kress Foundation and the Getty Foundation.)

 “The Sequel: Memory, Time, and Attachment in Victorian Narrative Painting (1859), A Year’s Art: The Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, 1769-2016, The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, London, England, September 2016.

 “Mapping the Commercial Art Gallery in Nineteenth-Century London,” Digital Mapping and  the Humanities Lecture Series, Emory University, March 2016.

“Digital Art History: Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?” Apps, Maps and Models: Digital Pedagogy and Research Symposium, Duke      University, February 2016.

Discussant, “Digital Art History: New Projects, New Questions,” CAA, February 2016

“Mapping the Commercial Gallery System in Nineteenth-Century London; or, The Promise and Perils of Digital Art History,” Public lecture in the Elizabeth Allen Visiting Scholar in Art History series, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, Illinois, March 2015.

“Exhibition, Circulation, Memory: An Aesthetic Geography of Victorian London,” Sonic Spaces: Music and Visual Culture in Nineteenth-Century London, Yale University, March 2015. (Invitation only symposium.)

Respondent, “Doing Digital Art History: Reflection on the Field,” College Art Association Annual Conference, New York, February 2015.

“Mapping the Commercial Gallery System in Nineteenth-Century London,” guest lecture at Summer Institute on Digital Mapping and Art History, Sponsored by the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, Middlebury, August 2014.

The London Gallery Project: Process and Outcomes,” THATCamp Session, College Art Association, Chicago, February 2014.

Discussant, “Spatial (Digital) Art History” session, College Art Association, Chicago, February 2014.

“Performing Absorption: Looking at Art with Lawrence Alma-Tadema and William Powell Frith,” at “The Global and the Local,” a supernumerary conference sponsored by the North American Victorian Studies Conference, the British Association of Victorian Studies and the Australasian Victorian Studies Association, Venice, Italy, June 2013.

"Maps, Networks, and Art Markets: Doing Digital Art History", Wesleyan Digital and Computational Knowledge Initiative, March, 2015.

Invited Seminar Leader (with Morna O’Neill), “Storytelling and Play in Victorian Art and Visual  Culture,” North American Victorian Studies Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee, November 2011.

Keynote Address, “Moralities in the Visual Arts,” 36th Annual Graduate Student Symposium, Department of Art History, University of California Santa Barbara, April 2011.

“Edwardian Obituaries for Victorian Art,” British Association of Modernist Studies and Scottish Network of Modernist Studies, University of Glasgow, December 2010.

“Happiness Lost: The Space of Victorian Modern-Life Genre Painting,” North AmericanVictorian Studies Association Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada, November 2010.

“Human Character at the Edwardian Royal Academy, c. 1910,” Midwest Conference on British  Studies Annual Conference, Cleveland, Ohio, October 2010.

 “The Problem of Painting Modern Life, c. 1850,” New England Conference on British Studies, Burlington, Vermont, September 2010.

 “Victorian Old Masters,” Renaissance Society of America Annual Conference, Venice,Italy, April 2010.

 “Gossiping at the Royal Academy,” Symposium in honor of Natalie Boymel Kampen, Barnard College and Columbia University, New York, October 2009.

“Shopping for Art: The Rise of the Commercial Art Gallery,” Victorian Interdisciplinary Studies Association of the Western United States joint conference with the Victorian Studies Association of Western Canada, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, October 2009.

Co-chair, “Galleries, Dealers and Critics: London’s Art Market in the Nineteenth Century,” Victorian Interdisciplinary Studies Association of the Western United States joint conference with the Victorian Studies Association of Western Canada, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, October 2009.

“Happiness Lost: William Powell Frith and the Painting of Modern Life,” Interdisciplinary Nineteenth-Century Studies Conference, Saratoga Springs, New York, April 2009.

“ ‘To wipe a manly tear:’ The Aesthetics of Emotion in Victorian Narrative Painting,” North American Victorian Studies Association, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, November 2008.

“The Grand Tour on Bond Street: Cosmopolitanism and the Commercial Art Gallery,” Association of Art Historians Annual Conference, Tate Britain, Tate Modern and Chelsea College of Art & Design, London, April 2008.

“Modern Masters and ‘Cheap French Chic:’ Cosmopolitanism in the Victorian Art Market” Northeast Victorian Studies Association Annual Conference, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, March 2007.

Chair, "A Nation of Shopkeepers: Innovation and the Art Market in Great Britain," College Art Association, New York, February 2007.

"Shopping for Art: Commercial Art Galleries and Their Publics 1870-1914," The Rise of the London Art Market. Tate Britain, London, February 2007.

"Apologia Pro Arte Mea: A Critic's Perspective on the Art Market and the Press," Research Society for Victorian Periodicals, New York, 2006.

"Artistic Circulation: The Social Lives of Victorian Paintings", North American Victorian Studies Association (NAVSA) Conference, September 2006.

"Cosmopolitan Connoisseurs: The Commercial Art Gallery and Its Publics," Internationalism and the Arts: Cultural Exchange between Britain and Europe at the Fin de Siecle, Magdalene College, Cambridge University, July 2006.

"Cocaine Addicts and Bolsheviks: Gossip and Topicality in British Narrative Painting," College Art Association, Boston, February 2006.

"The Social Practice of Victorian Art," commentator for the panel "New Market/New Economies: Art and Design Discourses c. 1840-1890," North American Conference on British Studies, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, October 2004

"Consuming Modern Art: Metaphors of Gender, Commerce, and Value in Late Victorian and Edwardian Art Criticism." Visual Culture and Taste in Late Victorian and Edwardian Britain, Centre for Visual Culture in Britain, University of Northumbria,  July 2004

" 'Let me be your banker': The Rise of the Commercial Art Gallery in Mid-Victorian London," North American Victorian Studies Association Conference, Bloomington, Indiana, October 2003.

"Art, Commerce, and the Nation: Boydell's Shakespeare Gallery." College Art Association, New York, February 2003.

"Queen Victoria's Indian Subjects: Rudolph Swoboda's Indian Portraits at Osborne House." Women Art Patrons and Collectors, New York Public Library, New York, March 1999.

"The Fallen Woman and the New Woman: The Prodigal Daughter by John Collier." College Art Association, Los Angeles, February 1999.

Links

Summer Research at Bowdoin: Mapping the Emergence of the Modern Art Gallery
Campus News: Gibbons Interns Tackle Interdisciplinary Projects With the Help of Technology
Academic Spotlight: "The British Problem Picture"

Fellowships and Grants

Getty Research Library Grant, Getty Foundation, 2008
Fletcher Faculty Research Grant, Bowdoin College, 2008
Faculty Research Grant, Bowdoin College, 2006
Student Immersion / Faculty Focus GIS Workshop National Institute for Technology and Liberal Education (NITLE), 2005
Research Support Grant, Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, 2004
Coca-Cola Grant for Gender and Women's Studies Scholarship, The Ohio State University, 2000-01
Chester Dale Fellowship, National Gallery of Art (CASVA), 1995-96
President's Fellowship, Columbia University, 1992-97