Natasha Mao earned her Ph.D. in art history with a focus on Italian Renaissance art, gender and sexuality, multicultural Europe, material cultural studies, and decorative arts. She completed a minor in medieval art. She has published one dissertation chapter, co-authored a journal article, taught an on-site course in Rome, and completed a year-long research internship at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
Dr. Mao was appointed Curatorial Interpretive Fellow at the Worcester Art Museum in 2019. The fellowship is specifically tied to the Higgins Armory Collection, which was a private arms and armor collection collected by John W. Higgins and the second largest after the Metropolitan Museum of Art's arms and armor collection. The collection was formally transferred to Worcester Art Museum in 2014, and Dr. Mao serves to help plan a permanent gallery for the 1500 objects from the collection in the next couple of years. Her fellowship has recently been extended until December 2022