Research Interests

  • The Ecological Imperative
  • History of the Perception of Art in the Modern and Contemporary Periods
  • Display and Space
  • Methodological Problems in the Analysis of Contemporary Art
  • Artists’ Travels
  • Creation of Artistic Identity
  • International Exhibitions
  • Historiography of Abstract Expressionism
  • French History Painting of the 18th Century

Memberships and Responsibilities

  • Prix Mobilière, Member of the Nomination Committee (2024)
  • Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, University of Bern (since August 2023)
  • EcoArtLab, Bern University of the Arts (HKB), Member of the Advisory Board (since March 2023)
  • Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board, Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz (since April 2022)
  • Senate Member of the Faculty of Humanities, University of Bern (since September 2021)
  • Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, University of Bern (September 2021-July 2023)
  • Kunsthalle Karlsruhe, Member of the Advisory Board (since 2018)
  • SAGW, Elected Member of the Commission for the Young Scientists Award SAGW (September 2017-2022)
  • University of Bern, Walter Benjamin Kolleg, Auto-Bio-Grafie – Historiografische Perspektiven auf Selbstzeugnisse in den Künsten, Coordinating Principal Investigator (2017-2022)
  • University of Bern, Walter Benjamin Kolleg, Research Forum: Original – Copy: Techniques and Aesthetics of Reproduction (2016-2018)
  • Getty Research Center, Los Angeles, Member of the Advisory Board (2008-2017)
  • Prix Thun for Art and Ethics, Jury Member (since 2016)
  • CIHA (Comité International d'Histoire de l'Art), Delegate, Administrative Secretary, and Treasurer (2004-2016)
  • Kiefer Hablitzel Stiftung, Member of the Board of Trustees, appointed by the Federal Council (since 2014)
  • SNSF Research Commission (Stipendiumskomission), Member (since 2014)
  • ProHelvetia, Jury Member for the Swiss Exhibitions at the Biennials (2011-2014)
  • Bern University of the Arts (HKB), Scientific Advisory Board (until 2012)
  • University of Bern, Institute of Art History, Director
  • Steering Committee of the Graduate School of the Arts (GSA / SINTA) (since 2011)
  • Swiss Association of Art Historians (VKKS), Board Member; 2008-2011 President of the Board
  • Biennale Bern ‘03, Patronage, 12.9.-19.9.2008
  • University of Bern, Member of the Collegium Decanale (2007-2010)
  • University of Bern, Director of Studies for the post-graduate course "Kunst und Beruf" (1998-2003)
  • BHA (Bibliography of the History of Arts), Advisory Board (project discontinued)
  • Konsthistorisk tidskrift / Journal of Art History, Member of the International Advisory Board
  • Cercle Recherche & Information André Malraux, Swiss Correspondent
  • The H.W. Wilson Company, Member of the Art Library Advisory Panel
  • Perspective: La revue de l’INHA, Member of the Comitée de rédaction époque contemporaine (editorial committee, contemporary period)
  • ICOM (International Council of Museums), Member
  • University of Bern, Forum für Universität und Gesellschaft (Forum for University and Society), Member
  • LWL - Landesmuseum für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte Münster, Advisory Board
  • Fulbright Commission, Switzerland, Selection Committee
  • Apexart, jury member for unsolicited exhibition proposals
  • Stiftungsrat Johannes-Itten-Stiftung, Member
  • Öffentlichkeiten der Kunst. Die Geschichte der Schweizerischen Plastikausstellung (SPA), funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), (2022-2026)
  • Mediating the Ecological Imperative: Formats and Modes of Engagement, SNSF Sinergia, (2021-2024)

Academic Positions

Since 08/2023 Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, University of Bern
Since 11/2001 Full Professor of Art History (The Thannhauser Foundation Endowed Professorship for Contemporary Art) and Director of the Institute of Art History, University of Bern
06/1993 - 2001 Assistant to Professor Oskar Bätschmann, Chair of Modern Art History at the Institute of Art History (research and teaching duties), University of Bern

Lectureships, Research, Awards

06/2019 Winner of the Excellence in Teaching award of the Faculty of Humanities, University of Bern
01-03/2019 Senior Fellow, Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz, Max-Planck Institut
01/2015 Visiting Senior Fellow, Getty Research Inistiute, Los Angeles
07 - 08/2013  Invited guest researcher, Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles
08/2012 - 01/2013 Professorial Fellow, Schweizerisches Institut für Kunstgeschichte (SIK-ISEA), Zürich
Since 12/2012 Appointment to the Academia Europaea, London
Since 03/2012 Appointment to the European Academy of Sciences and Arts, Salzburg
06 - 09/2011 Visiting Scholar, National Institute for Art History (INHA), Paris
06 - 07/2009 Visiting Senior Fellow Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles
07 - 09/2008 Visiting Professor at NSCAD Halifax, Canada
05 - 08/2008 Lecturer and Module Leader in the postgraduate course for Didactics in Art and Design, Bern
07 - 09/2005 Fellow of the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa
2002 and 2010 Travel grants on the basis of academic excellence, Embassy of the United States of America, Bern
2001 Winner of the Art-Focus Prize (Senior) of the Swiss Association of Art Historians (VKKS)
2000 - 2003 Lecturer for the Certificate Course "Art and Career," Institute of Art History, University of Bern / Member of the directorate of studies
1999 - 2001 Lecturer at the University of Neuchâtel
1998 and 1999 Visiting Scholar at the German Center for Art History (DFK), Paris
08 - 09/1998 Visitor Award from the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.
1997 Scholarship from the Swiss-American Cultural Exchange Council (SACEC)
07 - 10/1996 Research Fellowhsip at the Archives of American Art (AAA) in Washington, D.C.