Article Written by Sarah Joseph
A new professor will be joining the Art History Department next fall. Professor James Hargrove, the current eighteenth through twentieth century European art and architecture specialist, will be leaving Roanoke at the end of this semester. Thus, the department has begun the process of hiring someone to fill his position.
Over the past few weeks, three final candidates have visited campus to meet with departmental faculty and art history students over lunch, as well as to conduct teaching simulations and research presentations.
Art history Professor Jane Long, although not allowed to disclose much information as the decision has not been made yet, hinted at the difficult choice ahead.
“All are wonderful candidates with impressive qualifications who all are excited to be part of a small community and actively working with students,” she said. Adding that, “We are looking for a new faculty member with an intense love of art history.”
The first candidate is Ms. Julia Sienkewicz who hails from Duquesne University. She specializes in American art from 1750-1850, which was the focus of her lecture.
Anika Holzer, a sophomore art history major, meet all three professors at each of their presentations. She agrees with Long in that they all would be good fits for Roanoke. Regarding Sienkewicz, Holzer said, “I think she would do a good job at integrating local art and architecture – localizing art history – especially American/Southern arts.”
The second candidate is Ms. Alexis Clark from Denison University. She presented on Cubism and World War I, even though she specializes in nineteenth century France. Holzer thought she was “really knowledgeable and nice…her research was very cool but at such a high level of research that I got a little bit lost at times.”
The third and final candidate is Ms. Angelica Lucento, from the National Research University. She specializes in twentieth century Russia and lived in the country for a substantial amount of time. Despite this she presented on the public art of the New Deal. Holzer seemed most impressed by Lucento, saying that she was “engaging with the classroom and [had] high standards, which will push art history majors to better their understanding of art history.”
Although Hargrove is not involved in this process, he had some encouraging thoughts. “I’m sure my colleagues have chosen somebody who will be a wonderful addition to the program.”