Lucetta Johnson - The Courtauld Institute of Art

Lucetta Johnson

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Dr Lucetta Johnson

Associate Lecturer

Lucetta Johnson received a PhD in History of Art from The Courtauld Institute of Art. Her doctoral thesis, ‘Beyond the Hair-Line: The Representation of Hair in the work of Dante Gabriel Rossetti’, supervised by Professor Caroline Arscott, argued that Rossetti’s unique representation of hair was central to the production an alternative conception of subjectivity in his work. In making this argument she displaced traditional categories of ‘femme fatale’ and male genius, focusing instead on the interrelationship between Rossetti’s representation of space and corporeality.

Lucetta’s current research focuses on the development of the domestic interior between the period 1837-1910, the Great Exhibition of 1851, the overlapping between text and space, the history of furniture, the interconnection between bodies and buildings, the relationship between three-dimensional object and two-dimensional representation and the connection between objects, death and memory. This research will form the basis of her book Skinning the Carcase: Victorian and Edwardian Interiors, and a chapter on the domestic interior, ‘”The Solid Resisting Substance” in the work of Dante Gabriel Rossetti’ in Interiors in Art and Life (2016). Lucetta has extensive experience of teaching BA and MA courses on nineteenth-century and early twentieth-century British and French art at The Courtauld, and has taught on Victorian literature and visual culture at the University of Oxford. She has also worked on exhibitions at Tate Britain, Guildhall Art Gallery, Courtauld Gallery and Sir John Soane’s Museum.

Lucetta co-organised an international conference entitled Probing the Interior: 1800-2012. The conference examined and re-evaluated bodily, psychic and spatial interiors. It explored the interlacing and overlapping of different types of interiors, and developed new ways of thinking about the relationship between the decorative arts, furniture, bio-technologies, anatomy and space. A number of eminent art historians delivered papers in the conference including Professor Marcia Pointon, Dr Ruth Richardson, Professor Susan Sidlauskas, Professor Clare Willsdon, Dr Dominic Johnson, Dr Mary Hunter and Parveen Adams.



  • BA History of Art Year 2: Representing the body in nineteenth-century French and British Art
  • BA History of Art Year 2: Lessons in Interpretation
  • BA History of Art Year 3: Gender and the Body in Victorian Art
  • MA History of Art: Closer Look Series
  • MA History of Art: Flesh and Fabric: the Victorian and the Edwardian Interior

Forthcoming publications


  • Skinning the Carcase: The Victorian Interior (in progress)

Book Chapter

  • ‘”The Solid Resisting Substance” in the work of Dante Gabriel Rossetti’ in Interiors in Art and Life, Peter Lang, 2016. (6,000 words)


  • Ferns under Glass: The mid-nineteenth century Drawing Room (in progress)
  • ‘Down the Rabbit-Hole: Lewis Carroll, Aestheticism and Women’, in [author/ed] Interiors in Art and Life (Place, Publisher forthcoming 2015), pp.

Recent publications

  • Various articles in the Courtauld postgraduate journal Immediations, the Courtauld Gallery exhibition catalogue, Life, Legend, Landscape (2011) and a book review for Art History (2012).

Other current/ongoing professional activities

  • Concealed Interiors Seminar series, Courtauld, 2015-16
    Curator, Study Room 8, Courtauld, 2015-16

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