Linda K. Williams

Professor of Art History

Professor Linda Williams specializes in art of sixteenth and seventeenth-century Mexico and Italian art of the renaissance period.  She teaches a range of courses on the history of art of Europe and the Americas from the fourteenth century to the present, including the survey of western art, art of Mexico, Italian art of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, nineteenth and twentieth-century art and architecture, methodologies of art history, and co-teaches Art and Revolution in Latin America.  She is currently director of the Latin American Studies program.

Professor Williams’ scholarship focuses on the production and reception of art on both sides of the Atlantic in the early modern period.  She earned her doctorate in Italian Renaissance art, studying domestic murals in sixteenth-century Rome.  Her interest in the art of Viceregal New Spain, sparked at the University of Texas in the early 1990s, has resulted in research and publications that engage questions of artistic confluence in colonial Mexico.  She is particularly interested in the ways that art communicated with Maya and European audiences in sixteenth and seventeenth-century Yucatan; her current research focuses on the creation and reception of devotional works and religious murals painted by Maya artists in this region. 

Professor Williams was awarded a three-year (2019-2022) National Endowment for the Humanities collaborative research grant with co-P.I. Amara Solari (Pennsylvania State University) for the project, Maya Christian Murals of Yucatán: Indigenous Catholicism in Early Modern New Spain.

Select Publications

“The Birth of the Virgin with Saint Michael Mural at Tabi: The Inmaculada, Eschatology, and Christian Orthodoxy in Seventeenth-Century Yucatán.” Ethnohistory 61:4 (2014): 715-738.

“Modalities of Representation: Symbol and Contemporary Narrative in Sixteenth-Century Murals at the Convent of Izamal, Yucatán.” Colonial Latin American Review v. 22:1 (2013): 98-125. 

“Dual Messages of Power on the Façade of Casa Montejo, Mérida, Yucatán.”  Studies in Iconography v. 31 (2010): 157-210. 

“Local and Global: Expanding Vision in the Study of Sixteenth-Century Latin American Arts.”  The Sixteenth Century Journal: The Journal of Early Modern Studies v. XL, no. 1 (2009): 228-230. 

Book Review, Visual Culture of the Ancient Americas: Contemporary Perspectives, edited by Andrew Finegold and Ellen Hoobler; afterword by Esther Pasztory (University of Oklahoma Press, 2017).  Hispanic American Historical Review, 98:4 (2018): 709-711.

Book review, Global Indios: The Indigenous Struggle for Justice in Sixteenth-Century Spain by Nancy E. van Deusen (Duke University Press, 2015).  The Sixteenth Century Journal: Journal of Early Modern Studies  XLVII/4 (2016): 1058-1059.

Memberships

College Art Association
Association for Latin American Art
American Society for Ethnohistory

Renaissance Society of America
Sixteenth Century Society and Conference

Educational Background

B.A. History, UC Davis, 1984
M.A. Art History, UT Austin, 1992
Ph.D. Art History, University of Washington, 2004