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ISAAC Report Fall 2018

The Institute welcomed our our second group of ISAAC fellows from Nanjing University this fall. Senior Scholar Dr. Hansong Dan, Associate Professor, School of Foreign Studies; Junior Scholar Ting Zhang, PhD Student, The Art Institute; and Dr. Weiyi Wu, Assistant Researcher, The Art Institute. Dr. Dan was in residence for two months, and Ms. Zhang and Dr. Wu are currently in residence through August 2019. The scholars began their research travel in October 2018 with trips to New Mexico and Chicago.

ISAAC scholars and American art historian Penelope Hunter-Stiebel in collection storage at the Museum of Spanish Colonial Art.

ISAAC scholars and ISAAC Coordinator Lauren LaRocca in the Alcove House at Bandelier National Park, located 140 feet above the floor of Frijoles Canyon

The trip to New Mexico introduced the scholars to the art, culture, history, and landscape of the Southwest. The group was warmly welcomed to Santa Fe by staff at the New Mexico Museum of Art with tours of recently opened exhibitions, Shifting Light: Photographic Perspectives and Good Company: Five Artist Communities. Primary focus during the trip was given to collections of Native art with visits to the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian, the Ralph T. Coe Center, and the Indian Arts Research Center. A half-day trip to Bandelier National Monument highlighted the unique New Mexican landscape and archeological sites of early native peoples. New Mexico continues to delight and challenge our scholars in their research areas of photography and Native art. 

In Chicago the scholars visited significant collections of American art at the Art Institute of Chicago and the Block Museum of Art at Northwestern University. The scholars also had the opportunity to visit two private collections. Works by the Chicago imagists featured prominently in one collection, while the other showcased a richly diverse selection of works on paper from the 16th to the late 20th century. They were also treated to a private showing of the documentary “Hairy Who & The Chicago Imagists” with Director Leslie Buchbinder. Focus was also given to Chicago’s architecture with a tour of downtown Chicago icons and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Oak Park home and studio.

ISAAC scholars and Dr. Brettell at the Art Institute of Chicago study room with Curator Jay Clarke

ISAAC scholars, Dr. Brettell, and Dr. Max Schich tour the grounds of the University of Chicago and Hyde Park

The scholars look forward to a busy spring with research trips and a workshop talk. Ting and Weiyi will present reports on their current research on Tuesday, April 30; you can check the Institute’s Programs page for more information.  We hope you can join us!