Jackson Davidow

I am currently a Visiting Lecturer at the Rhode Island School of Design. In September 2019, I completed my Ph.D. in the History, Theory, and Criticism of Art and Architecture program with a dissertation titled "Viral Visions: Art, Activism, and Epidemiology in the Global AIDS Pandemic."

I study art, visual culture, and media of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries from a transnational perspective, with a focus on histories and theories of political activism, science, health, pedagogy, and globalization. Rather than concentrating on singular author figures, my research seeks to uncover complex narratives about networks of cultural production. I analyze the ways in which cultural programs, ideas, and identities emerge from, travel across, and negotiate various institutions, geographies, publics, and spaces, especially those that are sometimes thought to be beyond the realm of the aesthetic. A great deal of my work examines visual and spatial articulations of queerness in relation to constructs of the global and the postmodern. My scholarship foregrounds critical approaches to identity and representation, with regard to gender, sexuality, race, dis/ability, and post-coloniality. My work is also highly informed by debates on writing history from the vantage point of the global South. 

In the past year, I have been a Junior Fellow at the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, the Howard Tanenbaum Fellow at the Ryerson Image Centre, and the Photographic Arts Council—Los Angeles Research Fellow at the Center for Creative Photography. Recently, I co-organized Future Genders, the Max Wasserman Forum on Contemporary Art at the MIT List Visual Arts Center. I have been the recipient of the Aga Khan Program Student Travel Grant, the Harold Horowitz (1951) Student Research Fund Award, the Vera List Prize for Writing on the Visual Arts, the Schlossman Research Fellowship, and the MIT-Africa Travel Grant. Before my doctoral work at MIT, I studied Art History at McGill University and the University of Toronto.

My CV is available here.