Patrick R. Crowley

Biography

Patrick R. Crowley is a historian of Roman art and visual culture. His research and publications focus on conceptual questions about media and mediality and the evidentiary status of the image in antiquity, exploring such topics as ancient theories of vision and representation, issues of materiality and facture, and the historical intersections between documentary photography and the production of knowledge in classical archaeology. The objects of his study range widely, but include Roman sarcophagi, portraiture, and decorative arts, especially in precious stone. His research has been supported by the Getty Research Institute, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Mrs. Giles Whiting Foundation.

 

His first book, The Phantom Image: Seeing the Dead in Ancient Rome (The University of Chicago Press, forthcoming Autumn 2019), investigates the ghost as an epistemic figure in Roman art and visual culture. Crowley is currently working on two new book projects. The first offers a media-theoretical perspective on one of the most captivating bodies of portrait art in the western tradition, beginning with a critical rethinking of the technical procedures of molding and casting as they pertain to the evidentiary status of the trace and important formal questions about style. The second explores the conceptual space between Roman art and jurisprudence, investigating such matters as theories of labor-value, aesthetic hierarchies of the applied arts, the issue of unfinish and its distinctions across media, and so on.

Publications

The Phantom Image: Seeing the Dead in Ancient Rome

The University of Chicago Press
,
2019

"Parrhasius' Curtain, or, a Media Archaeology of a Metapainting," in Classics and Media Theory, ed. Pantelis Michelakis (Oxford, forthcoming)

,

"Rock Crystal and the Nature of Artifice in Ancient Rome," in Seeking Transparency: Rock Crystal in the Mediterranean World, ed. Cynthia Hahn and Avinoam Shalem (Reimer, forthcoming)

,

“Factitious Gems and the Matter of Facts in Pliny's Natural History,” in The Nature of Art. Pliny the Elder on Materials, edsAnna Anguissola and Andreas Grüner (Brepols, forthcoming)

,

Doubting Thomas and the Matter of Embodiment on Early Christian Sarcophagi,” in "The Embodied Object," a special issue of Art History (June 2018)

,

“The Farnese Sarcophagus in Antiquity,” in Life, Death, and Revelry: The Farnese Sarcophagus, ed. Christina Nielsen (London: Holberton, 2018)

,

“Crystalline Aesthetics and the Classical Concept of the Medium,” West 86th: A Journal of Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture (Fall/Winter 2016)

,

“Roman Death Masks and the Metaphorics of the Negative,” Grey Room (Summer 2016)

,

Profiles

Charles Cohen
Charles Cohen
Italian Renaissance and Mannerist Art
CWAC 258
773.702.0619
Potters Wheel
Richard Neer
Ancient Greek Art and Architecture
CWAC 259
773.702.5890
Andrei Pop
Andrei Pop
Modern Art and Aesthetics
1130 East 59th Street
773.702.8410
Lisa Zaher
Lisa Zaher
Modern and Contemporary Art
2013-14
University of Chicago
Conservation Research Fellow