The Institute of Fine Arts is delighted to welcome Chika Okeke-Agulu as the Kirk Varnedoe Visiting Professor for the spring 2020 semester.
The Kirk Varnedoe Visiting Professorship brings a distinguished scholar to the Institute each year to teach a course and give a series of public lectures in the area of modern and contemporary art.
The Professorship was endowed in 2006 by the late Professor Varnedoe’s friends and colleagues to honor and perpetuate his legacy of innovative teaching and to enhance the study and presentation of modern and contemporary art at the Institute.
Chika Okeke-Agulu is Professor of African and African Diaspora Art at Princeton University. His books include Yusuf Grillo: Painting. Lagos. Life (Skira Editore, 2020), Obiora Udechukwu: Line, Image, Text (Skira Editore, 2016); Postcolonial Modernism: Art and Decolonization in Twentieth-Century Nigeria (Duke, 2015); and (with Okwui Enwezor), Contemporary African Art Since 1980 (Damiani, 2010). He is co-editor of Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art and maintains the blog Ọfọdunka. He has co-organized several art exhibitions, including El Anatsui: Triumphant Scale (Haus der Kunst, Munich, 2019), Who Knows Tomorrow (Nationalgalerie, Berlin, 2010), 5th Gwangju Biennale (Gwangju, 2004), The Short Century: Independence and Liberation Movements in Africa, 1945 1994 (Museum Villa Stuck, Munich, 2001), Seven Stories About Modern Art in Africa (Whitechapel Art Gallery, London, 1995), and the Nigerian section at the First Johannesburg Biennale, 1995.
Among Professor Okeke-Agulu’s many awards and prizes are: Honorable Mention, The Arnold Rubin Outstanding Publication (triennial) Award (Arts Council of African Studies Association, 2017); The Melville J. Herskovits Prize for the most important scholarly work in African Studies published in English during the preceding year (African Studies Association, 2016); and the Frank Jewett Mather Award for Distinction in Art Criticism (College Art Association, 2016).
Okeke-Agulu serves on the advisory boards of the Hyundai Tate Research Centre, the Tate Modern, London, and the Center for the Study of Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC. He is on the executive board of Princeton in Africa, and the editorial board of African Studies Review.
About the Institute of Fine Arts at NYU
Founded in 1932, the Institute of Fine Arts is a center of graduate training and research in art history, archaeology, and conservation. The Institute has a faculty unrivaled in the breadth and depth of its expertise and in the range of its adjunct lecturers from top museums, research institutes, and conservation studios. The Institute has conferred more than 2,700 degrees, and its alumni hold leadership roles as professors, curators, museum directors, archaeologists, conservators, critics, and institutional administrators throughout the U.S. and internationally.