Dr. David Stewart

Associate Professor, Art History


I research the Victorian paintings of G. F. Watts and investigate his feminist patrons and influences. I am taken with Thomas Carlyle’s philosophy of clothes, and use it as a powerful art historical tool for works of artist as diverse as Marcel Duchamp and Cindy Sherman. I am fascinated by Enlightenment manifestations of arrogance and hate mongering, such as Eighteenth-Century sham ruins. I am also stimulated by the efforts of Deleuze and Ranciére to press art and life beyond worn out molds. This is why I love to study the latest developments in 21st-Century Art.

Why am I an Art Historian? I love to travel to Europe. I love to look at art. I love to take my students with me, and I love to learn from them.

I teach 19th, 20th, and 21st century art. Studying the history of art convinces me more and more everyday that there is always something new under the sun. Ideas and art change as fast as technology. Ten years ago Facebook reshaped the world and very few people could have imagined the impact it would have. The pace of change is what I love to study. Understanding past revolutions helps me understand just how radically different our future will be from our present. I find that exciting.


  • Ph.D., Art History, Boston University, 1988
  • M.A., Art History, University of South Carolina, 1980
  • B.A., Philosophy, University of South Carolina, 1976

Classes Taught

Honors and Awards

  • UAH Humanities Center Research Grant (Research in Italy), 2001 and 2002
  • UAH Foundation Distinguished Teaching Award, 2000-2001
  • UAH Mini-Grant (Research in Italy and Germany), 1999 and 2000


  • "Watts and Women: Victorian Art and Feminism".
  • Watts and Evelyn de Morgan. Pamela Gerrish Nunn.
  • "Political Ruins, Gothic Sham Ruins and the '45." The Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians. 1996.
  • "Of Angst and Escapism: G.F. Watts and Frederic, Lord Leighton." Victorians Institute Journal. Volume 22, 33-53. 1994.


  • "Art History, Art Criticism and the Evolution of Contemporary Art." Midwest Society for Photographic Education. 2001.
  • "G.F. Watts, A Victorian Feminist in the Royal Academy." College Art Association Conference. Toronto, Canada. 1998.
  • "Political Ruins: Gothic Sham Ruins and the '45." Twelfth International Conference on Medievalism. Canterbury, England. 1997.