Wendy Bellion

Associate Professor
Department of Art History
318 Old College
Newark, DE 19716

Wendy Bellion (Ph.D. Northwestern University) teaches American art history and material culture studies in the Department of Art History.  She also serves on the Executive Committee of the UD-Winterthur Program in American Material Culture.  Bellion’s scholarship takes an interdisciplinary approach to American visual and material culture, focusing on the late colonial and early national United States and exploring American art within the cultural geographies of the British Atlantic world and early modern Americas. Her book Citizen Spectator: Art, Illusion, and Visual Perception in Early National America (2011), which was awarded the 2014 Charles C. Eldredge Prize for Outstanding Scholarship by the Smithsonian American Art Museum, examines the exhibition of illusionistic paintings and optical devices within post-revolutionary cultures of sensory discernment and undeceiving.  She is also co-editor (with Mónica Domínguez Torres) of Objects in Motion: Art and Material Culture across Colonial North America (2011), a special issue of the journal Winterthur Portfolio.  Her new book project – What Statues Remember: Art and Iconoclasm in New York City – explores the performative dimensions of making and breaking sculptural things in American history.  She recently led an interdisciplinary material culture studies workshop for the 2015 biannual conference of the Society of Early Americanists and Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, and in several forthcoming essays, she explores the material practices of raising liberty poles in Manhattan, painting portraits in London, and looking at theatrical illusions in Philadelphia.