Kathleen Pierce, PhD
Art History | Visual Culture | Medical Humanities | 19th-Century French Empire



February 2023 | Discussant, “Digital Humanities and the Future of Art History,” affiliated session for the Services to Historians of Visual Arts Committee, College Art Association conference, 111th Annual Meeting, New York, NY 

Past (Selected):

2022 | “Reading Fragmented Bodies Across Art and Medicine: Wax-Cast Moulages, Cubism, and the Problem of Visual Certainty,” at the conference "Wax bodies. Histories of clinical and artistic uses of syphilis ceroplastics,” organized by the project “Neverending Infectious Diseases: the Case of Syphilis” supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation, the Université de Genève, the Hôpitaux Universitaires Genève, and the Université de Strasbourg

2022 | “Intermedial Authority: Re-Presenting Public Health in Fin-de-Siècle Prophylactic Cinema,” at the 10th International Health Humanities Consortium Conference, virtually co-hosted by the Center for Health Humanities, Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences; the Center for Literature and Medicine, Hiram College; and the Health, Medicine, and Society Program, Lehigh University

2022 | “‘This Skin Disease of Poorly Maintained Cities’: Pasted Paper, Surface Layers, and Pathological Skin,” talk for the seminar “Gestes d’images” at the Institut National de l’Histoire de l’Art, Paris

2021 | “A Photography of Restraint: Scientific Knowledge, Animal Subjectivity, and Medical Authority in the Annales de l’Institut Pasteur,” in the panel Contagion, Medicine, and Revival, at the Nineteenth-Century French Studies Conference, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C., winner of the Larry Schehr Memorial Award.

2021 | “Resisting Simian Subjects: Power and Protest in the Fin-de-Siècle Visual Culture of Medicine,” at the 34th Annual Conference for the Society for the Study of French History, “Power, Protest and Resistance,” hosted by H-France and in collaboration with the Society for the Study of French History and the University of Westminster. 

2021 | “New Spaces for a New Midwifery at the Lying-In Hospital of the City of New York,” at “Space and the Hospital,” a virtual conference hosted by the International Network for the History of Hospitals (INHH) and the “Hospitalis: Hospital Architecture in Portugal at the Dawn of Modernity” and “Royal Hospital of All Saints: city and public health” research projects.

2021 | “Doctor’s Orders: Chocolate and the Commodification of Medical Knowledge in the French Empire,” in the panel Coffee or chocolate? The art and design of colonial conquest, hosted digitally by the College Art Association, 109th Annual Meeting, New York, NY

2020 | "Violence in the Laboratory: Figuring Simian Subjects in Experimental Medicine,” in the panel Forms of Violence, at the Southeastern College Art Conference, digitally hosted by Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts, Richmond, VA

2020 | “Surface Layers and the Syphilitic Body: Gender, Race, and the Veiling of Visuality in Early Twentieth-Century France,” Veiling the Body: Cloth, Skin, Membrane, Paper, digitally hosted by the John Rylands Research Institute, University of Manchester

2019 | Panel Co-Chair, “Using (or Losing) the Art History Textbook,” the Southeastern College Art Conference, Chattanooga, TN, a review of this panel was published by Art History Teaching Resources Weekly 

2019 | “Fin-de-Siècle Posters as Collage: Pasted Paper, Surface Layers, and Skins,” Disrupting Narratives: New Perspectives on Collage, Collage Research Network, Edinburgh College of Art

2019 “Dissecting Vision: Cubism, Medical Image Making, and the Modernist Surface,” College Art Association, 107th Annual Meeting, New York

2018 “Pocked: Pattern and the Diseased Surface in Fin-de-Siècle Visual Culture,” the Southeastern College Art Conference, Birmingham, AL 

2018 | “Aping Illness: Visualizing Excessive Simian Subjects in Experimental Medicine,” Interdisciplinary Nineteenth-Century Studies Supernumerary Conference, “Measure and Excess,” hosted by Roma Tre University and John Cabot University, Rome

2018 | Discussant, “Inter/Dependency: A Symposium on the Medical Humanities,” Panel 2: “Seeing,” Center for Cultural Analysis, Rutgers University

2017 | “Picturing the Pathological Surface: Syphilitic Skin and the Disruption of Medical Vision,” the Southeastern College Art Conference, Columbus, OH

2017 “Scarified Skin and Simian Symptoms: Experimental Medicine and Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon,” Rutgers Center for Cultural Analysis, New Brunswick, NJ

2017 | “Prostitute, Moroccan, Monkey: Between the Human and the Animal in Roux’s and Metchnikoff’s ‘Experimental Studies on Syphilis,’” Interdisciplinary Nineteenth-Century Studies Conference, “Odd Bodies,” hosted by Muhlenberg College, Philadelphia, PA

2016 | “Chocolate, Children, and Health: Unwrapping the Doctor’s Image on Fin-de-Siècle French Trade Cards,” 30th Annual Conference for the Society for the Study of French History, “High and Low Culture: Elite and Popular Constructions,” University of Chichester, Chichester, West-Sussex, UK

2015 | “The Scientific Document and the Social Documentary: Photographs from the Tuskegee Syphilis Study,” Zimmerli Art Museum Symposium, “Re-Thinking Social Documentary Photography,” Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ

2015 | “Complicating Objectivity in Photographic Representations of Syphilis in Fin-de-Siècle France,” Natura Science and Epistemology Conference, “Envisioning Science,” Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ