Current Masters Students

Last updated on September 14, 2021.

A Abudu, Kojo
Alessandrini, Christopher
Aykan, Yasemin Elif
B Bai, Yaying
Beatrice, Caroline
Braybrooks, Alison
C Chang, Caroline
Choi, Daniel
Chu, Michelle
D Denison, Leah
Ding, Xinni
Diogenous, Ariadne
F Fialkoff, Andie
Finister, Brooke
Flinn, Mary Elisabeth
Franks, Barriane
G Gao, Yuan
Gebara, Sophia
Glimcher, Leah
Gu, Jiayi

H Hampton, Maddie
Hansen, Sarah-Rose
Horrocks, Victoria
Hu, Yueqiu
Huzenis, Eleanor
Hyman, Jacob
J Jain, Akshay
Janisch, Richard Austin
Javaheri-Saatchi, Laleh
Jiao, Yuchen
K Klein, Abbe
Klein, Colton
Kim, Ho Won
Kim, Hyojoo
L Lang, Theodora Bocanegra
Li, Si
M Meneses, Ana-Sofia
Millette, Joseph Walsh

O Olmstead, Darcy
Ortiz Monasterio, Carlota
P Park, Celine Hyejin
Pashaie, Natalie
Powers, Chloe
Pratt, Fiona
S Small, Emily
Seo, Helena
Su, Ying
R Rosenberg, Ethan
T Terada, Yuma
Toms, Kristin
W Wang, Shaun
Wehby, Emily
Z Zhuo, La

Kojo Abudu

MODA

Kojo Abudu is a critic, curator, researcher and scholar primarily dedicated to theorising, exhibiting, publishing, and supporting conceptual art practices from the Global South, particularly from Africa and its diaspora. A second-year MODA Student, Kojo is deeply invested in the radical emancipatory projects of queerness and decolonisation, and believes in the unique capacity of art and aesthetics to produce alternative philosophies of history and with this, more complex articulations of modernity. Kojo’s writings and curatorial projects – published in numerous magazines, publications, and exhibition catalogues – constellate theoretical and historical fragments from the so-called West and non-West to demand a multi-sited, pluri-temporal interpretation of the present so that we might think and feel our way towards an otherwise future. Kojo is also a 2021/22 MODA Curates fellow.

Yasemin Aykan

Yasemin Aykan

MA in Art History

Yasemin Aykan is a first-year MA student focusing on 18th-19th century European art. In 2021, Yasemin graduated from Barnard College, Columbia University with a major in History and a minor in Art History. In her senior thesis titled “‘What a “Delight’”: Turquerie in Interior Design and Decorative Arts in 18th Century France,” she focused on how the French attitude toward the Ottomans changed from fascination to degradation. She also served as the Editor-in-Chief of Columbia Undergraduate Journal of Art History, which she worked on receiving an affiliation from Columbia University’s Department of Art History and Archeology. Yasemin is particularly interested in revealing the cross-cultural encounters and the intersection of politics with art through an engagement with material culture.

Yaying Bai

Yaying Bai

MA in Art History

Yaying Bai is a first-year MA student and recently graduated from UCLA where she received a B.A. with highest honors in Art History and a minor in Visual and Performing Arts Education. Her research interests lie in the transnational analysis of modern East Asian visual culture, as well as the pedagogical practices in art history and arts. She won a UCLA Library Award with her undergraduate thesis titled “Inchoate Unitary Visions: Tracing Nationalism in the Visual Culture of Korea’s International Expositions, 1893–1929.” She was a recipient of Donald F. McCallum Memorial Scholarship and previously held internship at National Museum of China.

Alison Braybrooks

Alison Braybrooks

MA in Art History

Alison is a second year MA student, researching late Renaissance and early Baroque sculpture, primarily by sculptors active in Rome between 1590 and 1630. Her interest began with Bernini and Algardi, and she is now looking across the period at sculptors such as Camillo Mariani, Stefano Maderno and Francesco Mochi. She graduated from Aston University in the UK in 1989, and after a career in social investment, attended London’s Courtauld Institute and received their Graduate Diploma.

Caroline Chang

Caroline Chang

MA in Art History

Caroline Chang is a first-year MA student and is interested in devotional objects of medieval Europe. She currently works as the Associate Coordinator for Acquisitions at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Caroline earned her BA in Art History with honors and Studio Art from Kenyon College. She has held internships at the Frick Art Reference Library, Smithsonian Exhibits, and Gund Gallery.

Leah Denison

Leah Denison

MODA

Leah Denison is a first year MODA student originally from MA, who has been living in Portland, OR for the last few years. Her research interests include the intersections of modern and contemporary French, Middle Eastern and African art and the factors which determine the institutional dichotomization of these works. Leah is also interested in fashion history and its intertwinement with feminist theory, consciousness, design and environmentalism. She earned a BFA from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University in 2014 and studied at the Institut Catholique de Paris in 2013, where she studied French art history, plein air painting and street photography. Leah held internships at the Harvard Museum of Natural History and the Portland Art Museum and served as an Artist Assistant to Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons at the 2011 Havana Biennial. She is honored to continue her studies at Columbia and currently serves on the editorial board of the MODA Critical Review.

Brooke Finister

Brooke Finister

MODA

Brooke Finister is a first-year MODA student from California who focuses on the intersection of contemporary art, the African American Diaspora, and the social politics of American culture. At the start of her first year, her research is related to women in the spatial arts and the monetization of black bodies throughout history. She graduated as a published Ronald E. McNair scholar from San Jose State University (2016), with a B.A. in art history and visual culture and a minor in journalism. For five years, she has worked while studying in the non-profit museum world at the New Museum Los Gatos, San Jose Museum of Art, and the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art in the California Silicon Valley. Her experience as an art installer, curatorial assistant, visitor services, and now an avid blogger better informs her desire to make art education accessible regardless of background by providing equitable resources and encouragement of critical thinking in galleries. Brooke will continue to grow her career as an emerging curator, writer, and support to emerging BIPOC artists. First in her family to attend graduate school, she is honored to be going to her dream school to continue her education.

Yuan Gao

Yuan Gao

MODA

Yuan Gao is a first-year MODA student in the Department of Art History and Archeology at Columbia University. Her research interests lie in contemporary East Asian visual arts and cultural consciousness, and how the two inform each other. Yuan graduated High Distinction from University of Toronto with an Honours B.A. in History of Art and Cinema Studies. She was a University of Toronto International Scholar with a full-ride scholarship, and the recipient of the Moriyama Gold Medal, Mary Coyne Rowell Jackman Graduate Scholarship and Lawrence and Sharon Ho International Scholarship. She has previously held internships at Sequoia Capital China and M WOODS Museums in Beijing, as well as a research fellowship at the Jackman Humanities Institute and an RA position at the University of Toronto. She has written about and published in contemporary Chinese art and cinema, and premodern Chinese visual culture.

Sophia Gebara

Sophia Gebara

MA in Art History

Sophia Gebara is a second year MA Art History and Archaeology student who specializes in Latin American & Caribbean art. Her research interests focus on colonialism and imperialism, pre-Columbian art and material culture, as well as on contemporary artists who, through their artwork, challenge and redefine perceptions of indigeneity in the 21st century. Working with artists that engage within such a disciplinary field, such as Guadalupe Maravilla, Sophia researches for Maravilla while expanding upon her own research interests surrounding contemporary indigeneity.

Earning her BA from Union College (NY) with highest honors in Art History and a minor in Spanish and Hispanic Studies, she was honored with the William B. Jaffee award that recognizes a student’s exceptional achievement in art history, marked by the excellence of independent scholarship and interest in the department.

She has held various positions at the Yale University Art Gallery, The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, as well as the Williams College Museum of Art.

Jiayi Gu

Jiayi Gu

MODA

Jiayi, who also goes by Estelle, joined the MODA program in the fall of 2019 upon receiving her B.A. with distinction and a concentration in art history and Italian from Sarah Lawrence College, where there is no traditional major requirements. She is primarily interested in Italian modern and contemporary art and institutional critique. As an undergraduate, she spent one year studying art history, museology and sociology at the Università di Firenze and Middlebury Sede in Italy. Previously, she has held internship at the Center for Italian Modern Art.

Maddie Hampton

Maddie Hampton

MODA

Maddie Hampton is a second-year MODA student. She is broadly interested in theories of perception and the relationship between artworks and their representation, with a particular focus on large-scale installation pieces, the quoting of a Minimalist aesthetic practice in the late 20th and early 21st centuries, and the function of time-based media as it relates to the human impulse to document and collect. Her thesis project will investigate the relationship between autofictional narratives and contemporary art.

Victoria Horrocks

Victoria Horrocks

MODA

Victoria Horrocks is a first-year MODA student interested in image/text relationships, theories of display, exhibition cultures, and narratology. She graduated with distinction from the University of Oxford with an MSt in History of Art & Visual Culture and summa cum laude from Cornell University with a BA in English. Her research has varied in focus from modern painting to vernacular photography to museology. She has further professional experience in museum work and education, having previously worked as an educator at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum.

Akshay Jain

Akshay Jain

MODA

Akshay Jain is a second year MODA student focusing on global comparative modernities, with particular interest in the art of South Asia and more broadly the Muslim world. He graduated with a BA from Cornell University, where he studied Art History and Film Studies. He has previously worked at Aicon Gallery, Christie's, and Delhi Art Gallery. He is currently Assistant Curator at Darat al Funun.

Austin Janisch

Austin Janisch

MODA

Austin is a first year MODA student focusing on moments where the work of artists transformed, critiqued or inspired society. Passionate about cultivating his creativity through his art practice, Austin seeks to blend History and Art to bring the contemporary period in conversation with the past and through analysis highlight those continuities that are parallel with and can inform the present. His research seeks to develop cross-cultural and temporal comparisons to address issues which have re-emerged in the contemporary period. Austin’s undergraduate thesis titled “Soaring into Los Angeles: The 1910 Los Angeles International Aviation Meet” was published in the 2020 edition of the University of California’s URCA Journal.

His past experiences include positions at the Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Aside from academia, he is an avid ultramarathon runner. Austin earned his Bachelor of Arts in both History and Art along with a Minor in Museum Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Laleh Javaheri-Saatchi

Laleh Javaheri-Saatchi

MA in Art History

Laleh is a student of Art History with a particular fascination in the study of jewelry. Born in a multi-generational family of jewelers, she was exposed to jewelry throughout her life. The origins of forms, the history of fabrication techniques, and meaning in motifs and materials are amongst topics of interest. Combined with an interest in the arts of the ancient Near East, Laleh seeks to shed light through her studies on the various forms of bodily ornamentation preponderant in the ancient Near East. Bracelets from the Achaemenid period are a particular favorite. Laleh is also the mother of two boys, a long-time New Yorker, creates her own jewelry and is on the board of the Poets House in downtown NYC.

Abbe Klein

Abbe Klein

MA in Art History

Abbe Klein is a second-year MA student, studying the history and theory of modern architecture. Her research interests include 19th and 20th century housing and urban planning, as well as the Lebensreform movement. She is writing her thesis on Loheland, a women’s settlement and art school founded in 1919, in Fulda, Germany. In 2018 Abbe graduated Phi Beta Kappa from New York University with a B.A. in Art History. She has held positions at the International Center of Photography, Venus Over Manhattan, New York University in Berlin and Phillips.

Colton Klein

Colton Klein

MA in Art History

Colton Klein is a second-year MA student focusing on American visual culture from the mid-19th to mid-20th centuries with interest in materiality, ecocriticism, and affect theory, and interdisciplinary coursework in American Studies and Film Studies. He is currently the Project Manager for The Marsden Hartley Legacy Project: The Complete Paintings and Works on Paper, the first-ever comprehensive, annotated catalogue of all known artwork by Marsden Hartley, sponsored by the Bates College Museum of Art through a grant from the Mr. and Mrs. Raymond J. Horowitz Foundation. He has previously served as a Curatorial Intern in Prewar Art at the Whitney Museum of American Art, a Havner Curatorial Intern in American Art (Pre-1960) at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, and a Cataloguer in American Art at Sotheby's. Colton is concurrently studying Historic Preservation through the Center for Applied Liberal Arts at the NYU School of Professional Studies.

Ho Won Kim

Ho Won Kim

MODA

Ho Won Kim is a first-year MODA student. He is interested in the intersection of art and technology. His research focuses on the issues of artistic material and practical sensory behavior in contemporary art, especially the hybridization between the conventional artistic mediums and the new media. His area of interest spans from art practice to art writing and curating methods, reflecting the ever-changing communication environment. He graduated summa cum laude from Chung-Ang University, where he earned a B.A. in French Language & Literature and Media Contents.

Theodora Bocanegra Lang

Theodora Bocanegra Lang

MODA

Theodora Bocanegra Lang is a first year MODA student from New York. She received her BA from Oberlin College in Art History, and has particular interest in contemporary painting and performance. She is currently curatorial assistant at Dia Art Foundation, where she most recently worked on exhibitions with Maren Hassinger and Joan Jonas, among others. She previously worked at Gavin Brown’s enterprise and The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Ana-Sofia Meneses

Ana-Sofia Meneses

MA in Art History

Ana-Sofia Meneses is a New Yorker, student of Art History, theater costumer, and archaeologist. She enjoys taking on innovative and meaningful projects, organizing chaos through creativity, and engaging with people's conceptions of the visual. She has worked with the Poggio Civitate Archaeological Project, Dig Umbria, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Scala Publishing, The Juilliard School, Glimmerglass Opera Festival, and Target Margin Theater. These days, she fuses her Classics background and Art Historical scholarship with her love for costumes by studying ancient theater, particularly in the Roman world. She is interested in constructions of identity presented in outward appearance, and wonders what ancient theater mask type was the sweatiest.

Darcy Olmstead

Darcy Olmstead

MODA

Darcy Olmstead is a first year MODA student from Fayetteville, Arkansas. She is primarily interested in museum studies; archival silence; and how contemporary artists engage with questions of memory, grief, and preservation. She is further interested in film and media studies, particularly works regarding gender and abjection.

Darcy recently graduated from Washington and Lee University with honors in Art History and minors in Film Studies and Museum & Cultural Heritage Studies. While at W&L, she focused on Latin American modern art and wrote an honors thesis on a previously undocumented early work by Colombian artist Fernando Botero. She also studied conservation science under Dr. Erich Uffelman and traveled across the United States, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg to assist museums in the scientific imaging of their collections. Darcy has held positions at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art and RxART.

Carlota Ortiz Monasterio

MODA

Carlota Ortiz Monasterio is a first year MODA student from Mexico. Her research interests lie in the intersection of philosophy and contemporary art, and specifically in the fields of aesthetic theory, object-oriented ontology, ecocriticism, and phenomenology. She is also passionate about photography and lens-based art practices. Carlota holds an MA in Art History from Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City. She has previously held positions at Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco; Marian Goodman Gallery, London; The National Anthropology Museum, Mexico City; Karma, New York; Galería Elvira González, Madrid; and Galería Hilario Galguera, Mexico City.

Natalie Pashaie

Natalie Pashaie

MODA

Natalie Pashaie is a first year MODA student at Columbia University. She recently graduated with honors from the University of Southern California, where she earned her B.A. in Art History and Comparative Literature (2020). Her experience in the art world has been varied; she has excavated and conducted research in Ostia Antica, participated in LACMA's Mellon Summer Academy (2018), written art criticism for the Daily Trojan and for ArtNowLA (an online art review platform for which she still writes), worked at an art advisory, and assisted a curator in planning the exhibition Guasti, Michelucci, e il Monumento ai Tre Carabinieri in Fiesole, Italy. Her research interests lie within a global view of contemporary art, and on contemporary artists who, through their artwork, challenge marginalization and redefine preexisting narratives.

Chloe Powers

Chloe Powers

MODA

Chloe Powers is a first-year MODA student at Columbia University. She recently graduated from The University of Texas at Austin, where she earned her B.A. in Art History Honors with a Business Minor and a Museum Studies Certificate (2021). Her research interests surround contemporary African-American women artists, focusing on artists who create space within the margins leading to a more inclusive art historical canon. She recently completed her Honors Thesis over Renee Cox, Mickalene Thomas, and Lalla Essaydi, published in the Texas ScholarWorks (2021). In addition, she has held various positions at the Whitney Museum of American Art, The Blanton Museum, Mexic-Arte Museum, and the Texas Archive of the Moving Image.

Fiona Pratt

Fiona Pratt

MA in Art History

Fiona Pratt is a first-year MA student with an interest in Renaissance art and the history of art conservation. She is particularly interested in the varied approaches to the conservation of paintings and how the restoration of artworks affects public perception and the scholarly study of artwork. Fiona earned her BA from New York University with honors in Art History and a minor in Italian. She has worked at Villa la Pietra in Florence, Gagosian, and in the conservation laboratory of the Hispanic Society Museum.

Emily Small

MODA

Emily Small is a visual artist and second year MODA student. She received her BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2018 with honors, distinguished by the department of textiles as a returning visual artist. She was the recipient of the 2018 David A. Warner award for excellence, for her work in performance theory within RISD’s school of liberal arts and Brown University’s performing arts department. She is interested in performance theory, and relations of space and architecture to contemporary art and performance, as forms of archiving and historicization. She is also a MODA curates 2021 / 2022 fellow.

Helena Seo

MA in Art History

Helena Seo is a first year MA student who studies Italian Renaissance and Baroque art. Her research interests include the intersection of art and natural philosophy in early modern Italy with a focus on issues of materiality. Helena graduated summa cum laude from Wellesley College with a B.A. in Art History. Prior to entering Columbia, she worked as a curatorial intern in the Art of Europe department at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. In 2021, she was awarded the Wellesley College Graduate Chandler-Ott Fellowship for her graduate studies in Art History.

Ying Su

Ying Su

MA in Art History

Ying Su is a first year MA Art History and Archaeology student at Columbia University. Her research interests lie in Chinese art, especially that of the Ming Dynasty, as well as Chinese artifacts, such as bronze mirrors from the Han dynasty. Ying recently earned a BA from New York University with honors and awards in Art History, a minor in Business Studies, and a minor in Business of Entertainment, Media, and Technology. She has held positions at Lisson Gallery Shanghai, Shanghai Museum, New York University Art History department, Arton Contemporary, and Artra Tailored Art Experience.

Emily Wehby

Emily Wehby

MA in Art History

Emily Wehby is a second-year MA student in the Department of Art History and Archeology at Columbia University. Her research interests include nineteenth-century European painting with an emphasis on academic painting and its proliferation through international expositions and world’s fairs as well as the influence of photography upon its aesthetics.

She received her bachelor’s degree in Art History from Rhodes College in 2012, where her undergraduate research focused on the relationship between William Bouguereau’s paintings and early photography. Previously, she has served as the curatorial intern for the Parthenon Museum in Nashville, Tennessee, and as a teaching assistant at Northern Arizona University. Additionally, she has held positions with Vanderbilt University and Tennessee’s Department of Commerce and Insurance.