May 16, 2011
The Department of History of Art congratulates Patricia Simons on her promotion to professor with tenure.
Patricia Simons' scholarly interests include the art of Renaissance Europe (primarily Italy, France, Germany and the Netherlands) with a special focus on the representation of gender and sexuality and interdisciplinary research on the construction of authority and identity. Her work, published in anthologies and peer-review journals like Art History, Renaissance Quarterly and Renaissance Studies, has investigated such issues as portraiture as a mode of fictive representation, medical discourse in relation to visual culture, the representation and reception of homoeroticism, and metaphors both visual and textual (literary or "popular"). It is distinguished for its combination of rigour and innovation, as well as for analyzing the breadth of visual and material culture, from badges to maiolica, anatomical illustration to erotic prints, life size sculpture to canonical oil paintings and frescoes.
Her book The Sex of Men in Premodern Europe: A Cultural History (Cambridge University Press, 2011) examines the conceptualization and visualization of male bodies in premodern Europe. Her current project is a reinterpretation of the Villa of the Mysteries in Pompeii.