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Associate Professor

Lyneise Williams is Associate Professor of Art History at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (PhD Yale 2004). She is the author of Latin Blackness in Parisian Visual Culture, 1852-1932, (February 2019, Bloomsbury Academic Publishers), which examines how Parisians’ visual iconography of Latin Americans in popular imagery inextricably links blackness to Latin American identity beginning in the mid-nineteenth century and into the early twentieth century. Three case studies focusing on the imagery of Cuban circus entertainer, Chocolat, Panamanian World Bantamweight Champion boxer, Alfonso Teofilo Brown, and Black Uruguayans by Uruguayan painter, Pedro Figari, demonstrate the way this strategy was reconfigured in portrayals of phenotypically black Latin Americans, and argue for a nuanced reconsideration of blackness in early twentieth-century Paris. In her current book project, Williams explores the intersection of beauty, technology, fashion, masculinity, and the black male athletic body in 1920s and 30s Paris. Her third book project examines ideas about trauma, care, community, African American spirituality, and material culture as they converge in two cloth reliquaries made by an African American traditional healer in late 1920s Edgefield, South Carolina. In Fall 2016, Williams served as a Getty Scholar Fellow at the Getty Research Institute. Williams is also working on a manuscript that She has published articles on the paintings of Uruguayan artist Pedro Figari, the depictions of Panamanian boxer Alfonso Teofilo Brown, as well as on African art and hip-hop jewelry. Chief Justice of the State of North Carolina Supreme Court, Cheri Beasley appointed Williams as a member of the Chief Justice Advisory Commission on Portraits. Williams has curated exhibitions on African art, and she is a member of the team selected from an international competition to design the North Carolina Freedom Monument Project in Raleigh, North Carolina.