Yifan ZOU is a PhD candidate specializing in late imperial Chinese art and architecture. She received her MA from the University of Pennsylvania and holds a BSocSc degree from the University of Hong Kong, where she double majored in geography and art history. Her dissertation project “Competing for Fame: Iconic Timber Pavilions in Chinese Art and Visual Culture,” places buildings in dialogue with painting, literature, and material culture, and reveals how premodern Chinese conceived “iconic pavilions” as a distinct system through their codified multiplicity, shared locality, and mutable but public-oriented functions. Her dissertation is intended not simply as an effort to encompass interdisciplinarity, but as a methodological strategy to revise what constitutes “architecture” from within.
Before starting her PhD, Yifan has held internships at the Princeton University Art Museum, the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts at Penn, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.