Sylvia Wu is a PhD student in Islamic art and architecture. Her primary research interests revolve around the medieval Indian Ocean trade routes, a network connecting the coastal areas of East and South Asia, the Gulf, and East Africa. She seeks to foreground the dynamics of cultural activities seen in these regions that have been traditionally deemed outside of, or on the rims of the so-called Dar al-Islam. Through examining the artistic enterprises sponsored, executed, and used by individuals and communities with diverse backgrounds, Sylvia aspires to construe the transmission of knowledge within and beyond the network, which facilitated, or was formed by, the regional visual and material cultures.
Sylvia received her MA from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University with a thesis on imperial Ottoman silks. She has interned in the Department of Islamic Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.