Graduation 2022: Honorary Doctorates awarded to Prof Kellie Jones and Prof Craig Clunas

6 Jul 2022

Kellie Jones headshot of a woman

Dr Kellie Jones, Professor in Art History and Archaeology and African American and African Diaspora Studies at Columbia University has been admitted to the degree of Doctor of Literature honoris causa. The honour was conferred in a ceremony marking The Courtauld’s Class of 2022.

Dr Jones, whose research interests include African American and African Diaspora artists, Latinx and Latin American Artists, and issues in contemporary art and museum theory, is the recipient of awards from the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research, Harvard University, Creative Capital, and Warhol Foundation, among others. 

Dr Jones has also worked as a curator for over three decades, including terms at the Studio Museum in Harlem (1981–1983), Jamaica Arts Center (1986–1990), and Walker Art Center (1991–1998). With numerous major national and international exhibitions to her credit, she was U.S. Commissioner for the Bienal de São Paulo (1989); and a curator of the Johannesburg Biennale (1997). 

Kellie Jones received a B.A. (1981) from Amherst College and a Ph.D. (1999) from Yale University. She was on the faculty of Yale University (1999–2006) prior to joining the faculty of Columbia University, where she is currently Hans Hofmann Professor of Modern Art in the Departments of Art History and Archaeology and African American and African Diaspora Studies. In addition to her books, EyeMinded: Living and Writing Contemporary Art (2011) and South of Pico: African American Artists in Los Angeles in the 1960s and 1970s (2017), Dr Jones published in journals such as Artforum and Third Text and numerous exhibition catalogues. 

Accolades awarded to Dr Jones include a Creative Capital | Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant, a term as Scholar-in-Residence at the Terra Foundation for American Art in Europe in Giverny, France. She was awarded the inaugural CAA Excellence in Diversity Award in 2018 and appointed CAA Distinguished Scholar in 2020. She was named a MacArthur Foundation Fellow in 2016. 

Dr Craig Clunas, Emeritus Professor of History of Art at Trinity College, University of Oxford, has been admitted to the degree of Doctor of Literature honoris causa. The honour was conferred in a ceremony marking The Courtauld’s Class of 2022.

Historian of the art and history of China, Craig Clunas held the chair of art history at Oxford from 2007 to 2018, the first scholar of Asian art to do so. Much of his work concentrates on the Ming period (1368-1644), with additional interests in the art of 20th century and contemporary China. 

Craig Clunas received his BA in Chinese Studies from the University of Cambridge. In 1983 he was awarded his PhD by the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. He has worked as a curator at the Victoria and Albert Museum, and taught art history at the University of Sussex and SOAS. He was Slade Professor of Fine Art at Oxford in 2004. In 2014 he co-curated the exhibition Ming: 50 Years that Changed China at the British Museum. 

Dr Clunas is the author of Art in China (1997, second edition 2009) in the Oxford History of Art Series. Other books include Empire of Great Brightness: Visual and Material Cultures of Ming China, 1368-1644 (2007), based on the 2004 Slade Lectures, and Screen of Kings: Art and Royal Power in Ming China (2013). Dr Clunas’ most recent book is Chinese Painting and Its Audiences (2017), based on his AW Mellon Lectures in the Fine Arts delivered at the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC, in 2012. Since retiring from the Oxford chair of art history in 2018, Dr Clunas has continued to research and write on the art of China. 

Accolades awarded to Dr Clunas include an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Warwick. He is a Fellow of the British Academy, a Fellow of the Academia Europaea and an Honorary Research Fellow of the China Academy of Art, Hangzhou. 

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