Dr. Brett M. Van Hoesen
Assistant Professor, Modern and Contemporary Art History
Email: bvanhoesen@unr.edu
158 Church Fine Arts Building
Office phone: 784-6639
Office Hours: Tuesday/Thursday 2:30-3:30; and by appointment

Brett Van Hoesen joined the faculty at UNR in 2007. She holds a Ph.D. in Art History from the University of Iowa and a M.A. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She received her B.A. in Art with a minor in Dance from the University of Iowa. Prior to joining the faculty at UNR, Dr. Van Hoesen served as the Visiting Instructor for Modern and Contemporary Art History at the University of Missouri, Columbia. She has also held museum internships at the University of Iowa Museum of Art, the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, The Busch-Reisinger Museum and The Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University.


Dr. Van Hoesen’s research areas include Contemporary European and American Art, Visual Culture of the Weimar Republic, German Colonial History and its Legacy, Dada (Berlin and Zürich), Photomontage, Hannah Höch, László Moholy-Nagy, Max Pechstein, Popular Press Documentary Photography (Berliner Illustrirte Zeitung and Der Querschnitt), African Art, 19th Century French Art, Museum Studies, and aspects of contemporary Digital Culture Studies.

She has received funding for her research from the Ford Foundation, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), Junior Faculty Research Grant Program (UNR), Scholarly and Creative Activities Grant Program (UNR), and the Scholar in Residence Program at the Robert Gore Rifkind Center for German Expressionist Studies at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.


ART 365

ART 472

ART 473

ART 493, sect.2

ART 493/693/WMST 490

ART 737

Contemporary Art

19th Century Art

20th Century Art

German Art, 1900 - present

Women, Art, and Society

Theory and Criticism


“From Pop Icon to Postmodern Kitsch:  Michael Jackson and Contemporary Art.” In Michael Jackson: Grasping the Spectacle, edited by Christopher Smit. Farnham, Surrey, England; Burlington, VT: Ashgate, forthcoming 2012.

“Visualizing the Enemy:  Weimar Postcolonial Politics and the Rhineland Controversy.” In German Cultures of Colonialism:  Race, Nation and Globalization, 1884-1945, co-edited by Geoff Eley and Bradley D. Naranch. Durham, N.C.:  Duke University Press, forthcoming 2012.

Sound Art - New Only in Name:  A Selected History of German Sound Works from the Last Century,” (co-authored with Jean-Paul Perrotte). In Germany in the Loud Twentieth Century, co-edited by Florence Feiereisen and Alexandra Merley Hill. Oxford:  Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2012.

“Who Knows Tomorrow:  Berlin and Beyond.” (exhibition review) Nka – journal for Contemporary African Art (Duke University Press journal), forthcoming July 2011.

 “Postcolonial Cosmopolitanism:  Constructing the Weimar New Woman out of a Colonial Imaginary”. In The New Woman International: Photographic Representations from the 1870s through the 1960s, co-edited byElizabeth Otto and Vanessa Rocco with introduction by Linda Nochlin,Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press, 2011.

“Notes from the Frontline.” n.paradoxa (international feminist art journal) 26 (July 2010): 77.

“Re-Visioning Germany's Colonial Past: Tactics of Weimar Photomontage and Documentary Photography.” In German Colonialism, Visual Culture, and Modern Memory, edited by Volker Langbehn. London and New York: Routledge, January 2010. http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415997799/

"West of Worcester: Reflections on Grad Night." Capital City Arts Initiative, Carson City, Nevada, June 2009. http://www.arts-initiative.org/essays/grad_night.html

Three essays:  "Guerrilla Girls," "November Group," and "Spartacist Uprising." In International Encyclopedia of Revolution and Protest, edited by Immanuel Ness. (7 volumes + index volume). Malden, MA and Oxford, England: Wiley-Blackwell, 2009. http://www.revolutionprotestencyclopedia.com/public/


ART 365 Contemporary Art

Course Description: This course covers artists, art movements, and issues ranging from mid-century Europe and America to 21st century global centers. With the assistance of PowerPoint presentations, CONTENTdm, films, music, artists’ writings, exhibitions, art theory and criticism, this course provides an interdisciplinary and international approach to the culture of contemporary art practices. Lectures are presented in conjunction with discussion activities. Student participation is an essential component of this course, as the subject matter of contemporary art requires on-going discussion, re-evaluation, and debate. The final grade is based upon in-class assignments, mid-semester and final examinations as well as a written research project.

ART 493/693 Independent Studies in Art History: Women, Art and Society
(cross-listed with WMST/490R Special Topics in Women's Studies) (call #71766 – required for registration)

Course Description:"Women, Art and Society" is a course designed for upper-level undergraduates as well as M.A., and M.F.A students. It provides a rigorous introduction to ideas surrounding the broad rubric, "women, art, and society." In this course, we explore the cultural, social, racial and economic issues embedded in visual culture and the varied ways in which these arenas influence art criticism, political activism, the historiography of women artists, the representation of women in the arts, and the creation of codes/signs of gender and identity. The lectures, assigned readings, and research assignments cover artists and issues dating from the Middle Ages to the present with particular focus on the late 19th Century to the present. The geographic scope of the course is oriented toward Europe and North America with additional attention to artists from Mexico, Russia, Japan, China, Korea, India, South America, and Africa. In this vein, we discuss a number of recent exhibitions including Global Feminisms (Brooklyn Museum of Art, 2007), which have attended to the history and work of women artists from a global perspective. Feminism is discussed as a historical, multi-tiered project. The graded requirements for this class include in-class discussion activities, a midterm exam, final research paper, and an in-class presentation.

*This course was recently featured in a special issue on "Feminist Pedagogies" in the international feminist art journal, n.paradoxa (volume 26, July 2010, p. 77).

ART 737 Theory and Criticism

Course Description:
This graduate-level, discussion-based seminar for MFA students is an introduction to critical theory and art criticism in relationship the history of modern and contemporary art from c. 1850 to the present. The course is divided into five main sections. The first section is devoted to exploring an array of methodologies used to analyze art and cultural production. These methods are wide-ranging from formalism to psychoanalytic theory, from feminist theory to postcolonial studies. The second section is devoted to the history, culture and current state of art criticism. The third section consists of exploring a selection of scholarly journals – comparing and contrasting the agendas of these venues and the role that they play in contributing to and configuring the coordinates of the art world. The fourth section of the course focuses on "major topics of contemporary discourse" – including issues and practices relevant to philosophers, theorists, historians, critics, and artists. The fifth and final section is devoted to writing and presenting book reviews; students will select two books of their choice, write reviews of each book and give a presentation on this material at the end of the semester. 


Research Guide for Art History Courses (spring 2010), Knowledge Center, UNR

Gender, Race and Identity Program, UNR

Nevada Museum of Art

Capital City Arts Initiative (Carson City, Nevada)

College Art Association

Radical Art Caucus

Historians of German and Central European Art & Architecture

German Studies Association

Modernist Studies Association

N Home University of Nevada, Reno
Maintained by: art@unr.nevada.edu