Associate Faculty — Ph. D., Yale University
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Linda Henderson earned her Ph.D. at Yale University and has taught twentieth-century European and American art in the Department of Art and Art History since 1978. Before coming to the University of Texas, she served from 1974 through 1977 as Curator of Modern Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Professor Henderson's research and teaching focus on the interdisciplinary study of modernism, including the relation of modern art to fields such as geometry, science and technology, and mystical and occult philosophies. In addition to periodical articles and catalog essays, she is the author of The Fourth Dimension and Non-Euclidean Geometry in Modern Art (Princeton University Press, 1983; new ed., MIT Press, 2009), which received the Vasari Award from the Dallas Museum of Art. Her second book, Duchamp in Context: Science and Technology in the Large Glass and Related Works (Princeton, 1998), won first prize in the Robert W. Hamilton Author Awards competition in 1999.
The new MIT Press edition of her Fourth Dimension includes a "Reintroduction" of several hundred pages tracking the history of this important cultural idea in the second half of the 20th century. It was in the context of that work that she discovered the Park Place Gallery artists and developed the exhibition Reimagining Space: The Park Place Gallery Group in 1960s New York for the Blanton Museum, opening in fall 2008. The exhibition and her catalog essay, "Park Place: Its Art and History," highlight this important gallery and group of artists who were at the center of activity in New York in the mid-1960s, but whose commitment to complex space in painting and sculpture put them at odds with the increasingly dominant reductivist aesthetics of Minimalist sculpture and Clement Greenberg's doctrine of flatness in modern painting.
Before these most recent projects, Professor Henderson published in 2002 an interdisciplinary anthology co-edited with literature scholar Bruce Clarke, From Energy to Information: Representation in Science and Technology, Art, and Literature (Stanford University Press). That volume is based on a symposium of the same title organized at the University of Texas in 1997, which brought together panels of historians of science, literature, and art to discuss the cultural impact of a series of scientific and technological developments, ranging from thermodynamics and ether/electromagnetism to cybernetics and virtual reality. In 2003 Professor Henderson co-organized in Austin the national conference of the Society for Literature and Science (now the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts) on the theme "Rethinking Space and Time Across Science, Literature, and the Arts."
A Guggenheim Fellow in 1988-89, Professor Henderson is a member of the Academy of Distinguished Teachers and holds the David Bruton, Jr. Centennial Professorship in Art History.