Northern Illinois University

School of Art

Ph.D. University of California-Berkeley

Assistant Professor, Art History, Contemporary Art
Office: Art Building 203B

Sarah Evans

Sarah Evans is Assistant Professor of contemporary art history. Having completed a B.A. in film studies and an M.A. in critical theory, Professor Evans earned her Ph.D. (2004) in art history at University of California at Berkeley. She has held post-doctoral fellowships in the College of Letters and Science at UC Berkeley (2004-2006) and at Cornell University’s Society for the Humanities (2006-2007).

Her current project focuses on appropriation art of the 1970s, situating the early work of avant-garde artists like Cindy Sherman, Sherrie Levine, Robert Longo and David Salle within a broad context that includes pop-cultural phenomena like repertory cinema and television sit-coms, as well as the punk and No Wave music and film cultures of Lower Manhattan. Her goal is to analyze the social, professional and private dimensions of citation-based art, music and film, which, until now, has been interpreted primarily in terms of its contribution to postmodernism.

Professor Evans’ research interests include: theories of modernism and post-modernism; the relationship between modernism and mass culture; the connection between art and radicalism or revolutionary projects; the history of bohemianism and the concept of subculture; irony as a modern mode; humor, deadpan delivery and in-jokes in post-WWII art; crossovers among visual art, music, and film; collaborative practices, community-based and community-building art, and artist communities; art, art markets and art-working in the era of globalization; feminist theory; theories of photography; the historic and thematic association of women with photography; and the work of Edouard Manet and Cindy Sherman. Her article “There’s No Place Like Hallwalls: Alternative-space Installations in an Artists’ Community” is forthcoming in the Oxford Art Journal.