Ph.D. Institute of Fine Arts, New York University
M.A. Queens College, City University of New York
B.A. City College, City University of New York
- Research Areas
Late medieval through 17th-century art
Diane Wolfthal specializes in late medieval and early modern European art. Her interests include feminist and gender studies, Jewish Studies, the history of sexuality, technical art history, and the study of the intersection of money, values, and culture. Her authored books include In and Out of the Marital Bed: Seeing Sex in Renaissance Art (Yale University Press, 2010), Picturing Yiddish: Gender, Identity, and Memory in Illustrated Yiddish Books of Renaissance Italy (Leiden: Brill, 2004), Images of Rape: The "Heroic" Tradition and its Alternatives (Cambridge University Press, 1999), and The Beginnings of Netherlandish Canvas Painting (Cambridge University Press, 1989). She co-authored Princes and Paupers: The Art of Jacques Callot (2013) and Corpus of Fifteenth-Century Painting in the Southern Netherlands and the Principality of Liège: Early Netherlandish Paintings in Los Angeles (Brussels: KIK-IRPA, 2014). She has also edited or co-edited collections of essays on the family; peace and negotiation; the rise of the monetary economy and its effect on European culture; and a Festschrift for Colin Eisler. She is a Founding Co-editor of Early Modern Women: An Interdisciplinary Journal.
Book and Exhibition Plans
Wolfthal's two major current projects are Household Help: Images of Servants and Slaves in Europe and Abroad, 1400-1700, under contract to Yale University Press, and an exhibition, Medieval Money, for the Morgan Library and Museum in New York.
For PDFs of her publications, see her website on academia.com.
- Selected Articles and Essays
“Peter Pourbus’ Canvas Triptych,” catalogue entry for exhibition Pieter Pourbus en de familie Claeissens. Het Brugse schildersmilieu in de tweede helft van de zestiende eeuw, ed. by Til-Holger Borchert and Anne van Oosterwijk. (Also published in English version: Forgotten masters: Pieter Pourbus and painting in Bruges, 1525-1625) 12 October 2017 - 21 January 2018, Groeningemuseum, Bruges, co-authored with Anne van Oosterwijk, pp. 240-245.
“Weave Match and its Implications: The Case of Dirk Bouts," co-authored with Don Johnson and Catherine Metzger, in Workshop Practice in Early Netherlandish Painting: Case Studies from Van Eyck through Gossart, edited by Maryann Ainsworth (Turnhout: Brepols, 2017), 36-47.
“Complicating Medieval Anti-Semitism: The Role of Class in Two Tales of Christian Violence against Jews," Gesta 55.1, (Spring 2016): 105-27.
“Beyond Human: Visualizing the Sexuality of Abraham Bosse's Mandrake,” in Renaissance Posthumanism, edited by Joseph Campana and Scott Maisano (Fordham University Press, 2016), 221-52.
"A Newly Discovered Penitent Magdalen by Giampietrino," co-authored with Natasha Mao, Source 35.4, (2016) pp. 311-21.
“A Yiddish Minhagim Manuscript,” in Skies of Parchment, Seas of Ink: Jewish Illuminated Manuscripts, ed. by Marc Michael Epstein (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2015), 225-28.
“Household Help: Early Modern Portraits of Female Servants,” Early Modern Women: An Interdisciplinary Journal, 8 (2013): 5-52 . Reviewed in Times Literary Supplement, Economic History Review (Feb. 2015).
“Paupers,” “Introduction” (co-authored with Dena Woodall), and ten catalogue entries in Princes and Paupers: The Art of Jacques Callot, ed. by Diane Wolfthal and Dena Woodall (Houston: Museum of Fine Arts, distributed by Yale University Press, 2012).
“Sin or Sexual Pleasure? A Little-Known Nude Bather in a Flemish Book of Hours,” in The Meanings of Nudity in Medieval Art, ed. by Sherry Lindquist (Aldeshot: Ashgate Press, 2012), 279-97.
“The Sexuality of the Medieval Comb,” in Exploring the Thresholds of Medieval Visual Culture, ed. by Elina Gertsman and Jill Stevenson (Woodbridge: Boydell Press, 2012), 176-94.
“Religious Devotion, Aristocratic Status, and Crusading Fervor in Rogier van der Weyden’s Diptych of Philippe de Croÿ,” in New Studies on Old Masters: Essays in Renaissance Art in Honor of Colin Eisler, co-edited by John Garton and Diane Wolfthal (Toronto: Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies, 2011), 105-23.
- Selected Awards and Honors
2017 - Faculty Teaching and Mentoring Award, Graduate Student Association, Rice University
2014 - Awarded the prize for the Best Article on women and gender for the year 2013 for "Household Help: Early Modern Portraits of Female Servants" by the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women 2012 - Visiting Scholar, Yarnton Manor, Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies
2012 - Museum Scholar, J. Paul Getty Institute
2012, 2007-2010 (declined), 2006 - Art in Europe in Context Grant, Samuel H. Kress Foundation
2011 - Visiting Scholar, Yale Center for British Art
2006 - Art History Fellowship, Sylvan C. Coleman and Pamela Coleman Memorial Fund, Metropolitan Museum of Art
2006, 2002-2003 - Fellowship, National Endowment for the Humanities
2005 - Paul Mellon Visiting Senior Fellowship, National Gallery of Art, Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts
2002, 1999 - Grant, Lucius N. Littauer Foundation
2001, 1993 - Summer Stipend, National Endowment for the Humanities
2000-2001 - Research Award, Hadassah International Research Institute on Jewish Women, Brandeis University
2000-2001 - Grant, The Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture
2000 - Awarded Article of the Month (October) for “’Douleur sur toutes autres’: Revisualizing the Rape Script in the ‘Epistre Othea’ and ‘Le Livre de la Cité des Dames’ ” by The Medieval Feminist Index, Haverford College
1997-1998 - American Postdoctoral Scholar Fellowship, American Association of University Women
1995 - Member, Summer Institute on Sex and Gender, National Endowment for the Humanities
1991-1992 - Leona Beckmann Fellowship, American Association of University Women (awarded but declined)
Corpus of Early Netherlands Paintings. Los Angeles Museums, co-authored with Catherine Metzger. (Brussels: Centre d’étude de la peinture du quinzième siècle dans les Pays-Bas méridionaux et la principauté de Liège, 2014).
Princes and Paupers: The Art of Jacques Callot, co-authored with Dena Woodall (Houston: Museum of Fine Arts, distributed by Yale University Press, 2013).
In and Out of the Marital Bed: Seeing Sex in Renaissance Art (London: Yale University Press, 2010).
Picturing Yiddish: Gender, Identity, and Memory in Illustrated Yiddish Books of Renaissance Italy. Brill Series in Jewish Studies, 36 (Leiden: Brill, 2004).
Images of Rape: The "Heroic" Tradition and its Alternatives (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press). Hardcover edition, 1999. Paperback edition, 2000.
The Beginnings of Netherlandish Canvas Painting (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press). First printing, 1989. Second printing, 1990.