PhD University of Edinburgh, Islamic Art History, 1993
B.A. Trinity College, Archaeology with Mental and Moral Science, Dublin, 1988
Art and architecture of the Islamic world.
Cross-cultural dimensions of Islamic material culture.
Theories and practices of image-making.
Technologies of Representation.
Art historical historiography, methodology, and theory.
The Emergence of Islam and its Mediterranean Milieu.
Before the Mughals: Early Indo-Islamic Material Culture.
Beyond Abstraction and Arabesques: Refiguring Islamic Ornament.
Intercultural Islam: Betwixt and Between in the Medieval Islamic World.
Globalizing Cultures: Art and Mobility in the Eighteenth Century. Co-edited with Nebahat Avcioğlu, a dedicated volume of the journal Ars Orientalis (39, 2011).
Objects of Translation: Material Culture and Medieval “Hindu-Muslim” Encounter. Princeton University Press, 2009.
Piety and Politics in the Early Indian Mosque. Debates in Indian History and Society.Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008.
The Great Mosque of Damascus: Studies on the Makings of an Umayyad Visual Culture. Boston: Brill, 2000.
Articles and Essays:
“Bodies and Becoming: Mimesis, Mediation and the Ingestion of the Sacred in Christianity and Islam,” in Sally M. Promey, ed., Sensational Religion: Sensory Cultures in Material Practice, 459-493. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2014.
“Gilding, Inlay and the Mobility of Metallurgy: A Case of Fraud in Medieval Kashmir,” in Venetia Porter & Mariam Rosser-Owen, eds., Metalwork and Material Culture in the Islamic World: Art, Craft and Text. Essays Presented to James W. Allan (London, 2012), 131-142.
“From Icon to Coin: Potlatch, Piety, and Idolatry in Medieval Islam,” in Gerhard Jaritz, ed., Images, Ritual and Daily Life. The Medieval Evidence, (Vienna: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 2012), 163-172.
“Christian Mosaics in Jordan and Early Islamic Palestine: A Case of Regional Iconoclasm;” “Faith, Religion and the Material Culture of Early Islam;” “The Qur’an,” along with entries on mosaics, pilgrimage art, and Qur’ans, in Helen Evans, ed., Byzantium and Islam: Age of Transition (New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2012). [ ‘Faith. religion’ and ‘The Qur’an’]
“Conflict and Cosmopolitanism in Arab Sind,” in Deborah Hutton & Rebecca Brown, eds., A Companion to South Asian Art (Blackwell Companions to Art History) (2011), 365-397.
“Appropriation as Inscription: Making History in the First Friday Mosque of Delhi,” in Richard Brilliant and Dale Kinney, eds., The Mirror of Spolia: Premodern Practice and Postmodern Theory (Malden, MA, 2011), 121-147.
“A Ghaznavid Narrative Relief and the Problem of Pre-Mongol Persian Book Painting,” in David Knipp, ed.,Siculo-Arabic Ivories and Islamic Painting 1100-1300, Proceedings of the International Conference, Berlin, 6-8 July 2007 (München, 2011), 257-272.
“Masons and Mobility: Indic Elements in Twelfth-century Afghan Stone-carving,” in Anna Filigenzi & Roberta Giunta, eds., Fifty Years of Research in the Heart of Eurasia, Insituto Italiano per l’Africa et ;’Oriente, (Rome 2009), 137-160.
“An ambiguous aesthetic: Crusader spolia in Ayyubid Jerusalem.” In Ayyubid Jerusalem: The Holy City in Context, 1187-1250, edited by Robert Hillenbrand and Sylvia Auld, 202-215. London: Altajir Trust, 2009.
“Islamic Identities and Islamic Art: Inscribing the Qur’an in Twelfth-century Afghanistan.” In Dialogues in Art History, from Mesopotamian to Modern: Readings for a New Century, edited by Elizabeth Cropper, 91-118. Washington, D. C.: National Gallery of Art, 2009.
“From the Prophet to Postmodernism? New World Orders and the End of Islamic Art.” In Making Art History: A Changing Discipline and its Institutions, edited by Elizabeth Mansfield, 31-53. London & New York: Routledge, 2007.
“Image against Nature: Spolia as Apotropaia in Byzantium and the Dar al-Islam.” Mapping the Gaze – Vision and Visuality in Classical Arab Civilisation, a special issue of The Medieval History Journal 9 no. 1 (2006): 143-166.
“Ghurid monuments and Muslim identities: Epigraphy and Exegesis in Twelfth-century Afghanistan.”Indian Economic and Social History Review 42 no. 3 (2005): 263-294.
“Ghurid Architecture in the Indus Valley: the Tomb of Shaykh Sadan Shahid.” Ars Orientalis 36 (2001): 129-166.
“Light in Stone: the Commemoration of the Prophet in Umayyad Architecture.”In Bayt al-Maqdis Part Two: Jerusalem and Early Islam, edited by Jeremy Johns, 311-59. Oxford Studies in Islamic Art, 9, part 2. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000.
“The Ottoman Windows in the Dome of the Rock and the Aqsa Mosque.”In Ottoman Jerusalem, the Living City: 1517-1917, edited by Sylvia Auld and Robert Hillenbrand, 431-63.London: Altajir World of Islam Trust, 2000.
Articles in Press:
“Stucco and Glass Windows from the East and West Palaces.” Forthcoming in Raqqa IV: Excavations of the Deutsches Archäologisches Institut at Raqqa, Syrian Arab Republic.
Selected Review Articles
Review of Ahmad Ghabin, Hisba, Arts and Craft in Islam (Arabisch-Islamische Welt in Tradition und Moderne, 2009), Speculum (88/2, 2013), 517-520.
Current Research Projects:
Islam and Image: Polemics, Theology and Modernity. A transhistorical exploration of the ‘prohibition of images’ (Bilderverbot) as a perceived characteristic of Islamic cultures. Based on both empirical and theoretical approaches, the book analyses the interrelationships between proscription, prescription, and artistic praxis. To be published by Reaktion Books, London.
2014 Iris Foundation Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Decorative Arts
2011 winner of the Ananda K. Coomaraswamy Book Prize of the Association for Asian Studies, South Asia Council, for the best English-language work in South Asian studies.
Carnegie Foundation Scholar, 2007-2008
NYU’s Golden Dozen Award for Outstanding Teaching, 2006
Getty Scholar, Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles, 2007
Residential fellow, The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Mass., 2006
Ailsa Mellon Bruce Senior Fellow, Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 2000-2001
Research Fellow, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., 2001-2002
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Aga Khan Program for Islamic Art, Harvard University, 1997
Nasser D. Khalili Research Fellow in Islamic Art and Architecture, University of Oxford, 1993-1995