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Graduate Students

Assistant Director, Center for Creative Ecologies
Chessa Adsit-Morris is a curriculum theorist and assistant director of the Center for Creative Ecologies housed within the Department of the History of Art and Visual Culture at the University of California, Santa Cruz. She writes widely on the intersection of curriculum studies, posthumanism, ecological thought and SF, and is the author of Restorying Environmental Education: Figurations, Fictions, Feral Subjectivities (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017). Her current teaching, research and publications focus on transdisciplinary research and pedagogy, with particular reference to visual studies, science and technology studies, environmental humanities, ecological thought and speculative fiction.
Ph.D. Student
New Media Art, The History of Art and Technology, Curating Media & The Politics of Production
Modern and Contemporary Art, Asian Diasporic Art, Asian American Studies, Filipino American Studies, Museum Studies
Land-based contemporary art practices; settler-colonial studies; the politics of land, including land rights and land use management; extractive capitalism and environmental justice.
Transculturation and identity in the early modern Spanish Americas; visual cultures of the Atlantic world; museum and heritage studies
exhibition/museums; critical curatorial studies; contemporary Oceanic art; colonial history, race, and culture; archive interventions
Contemporary art and visual culture in East & Southeast Asia, Hong Kong in particular; colonialism, historical trauma, memory and amnesia, and the concentrationary in Asia; minor transnationalism and minor cultures; Cantonese diaspora
histories of photography; Indigenous and settler-colonial studies; intersections between infrastructure, legal geographies and landscapes
Visual aspects of devotional practices in Roman Catholic traditions with a focus on ex-voto practices of Italy, Spain and Mexico
Visual culture in colonial South America (Andes): textiles and other visual objects; concepts of landscape, territory, claim to land; conflict, contrast, confluence and things inbetween in colonial encounter
Ph.D. Candidate
I'm writing an inter-disciplinary dissertation that tells the story of neoliberalism in Lebanon from waste.
South Korean contemporary art and culture in regard to gender, sexuality, and the body.
Contemporary Art from Africa and its Diasporas
Theories of empire and the ways in which ethnic minorities maintained their identity under periods of colonization localized in Indigenous and Spanish empires in the Andes.
19th and 20th century US built environment, public art and architecture, schools and educational institutions, play, childhood, urban and community planning, social practice, community-based art movements, alternative educational spaces
History of Art and Visual Culture, PhD candidate
Interactions between the Inka and the Amazon; colonial Peru, the Amazon(s).
Interest in the cultural matronage of Late Antique, Byzantine, and Medieval royal women.
Aaron Samuel Mulenga, area of study includes contemporary art of Africa, post-colonial theory and the roles that museums play in shaping cultural narratives. Aaron is a multi-disciplined artist with a keen interest in sculptural forms and installation.
Visual Cultures of Southeast Asia and its diaspora, particularly Cambodia, and its intersection with complex issues of memory, exile, displacement, trauma, and erasure in the post-Vietnam-American War period.
My current research focuses on the visual culture (contemporary art, architecture & mass media) of the Arctic, particularly Svalbard Norway, and its geopolitical implications for global collective memory
Islamic art, material culture, performing arts and gender in Southeast Asia
20th-21st Centuries Latin American and Brazilian art, Latin American and Brazilian Visual Culture, Contemporary Art.
Cultural memory, trauma, and identity/postidentity (particularly contemporary Jewish American identity and the Holocaust); embodiment and performance; temporal/spatial relations; visual lexicons.
Ecology and the nonhuman in contemporary art, ecomedia, emerging media, documentary film, animation, virtual reality, feminist theory, landscape studies, contemporary art of the Americas, cultural memory, postcolonialism, political theory.
Research interests: visual culture of Africa and its diasporas; French colonialism; memory and the archive(s) of slavery; performance; textiles, clothing and the body.
Contemporary Chicanx, Latinx, and Latin American art and visual/material culture. Borderlands, transborder politics, and the colonial body.
Ph.D. Candidate, Visual Studies, University of California Santa Cruz, Co-Executive Editor, Pacific Arts
Material and visual cultures of Oceania, Pacific Studies, environment and ecology, Indigenous studies, Native American material and visual culture, settler colonial history
Research interests include 19th to 21st-century art of the United States, ecocritical art history and visual studies, global contemporary art, environmental justice, energy and environmental humanities, U.S. militarism, Native American art.
Environmental disaster, environmental justice, eco-erotics, rhetorics of apocalypse, utopias/dystopias, toxicity & contamination, diasporic memory, film / video / screen-based media