Amy M. Mooney is an Associate Professor at Columbia College Chicago where she teaches courses on modern and contemporary American art with a focus on African American art and visual culture. Her publications include a monograph on the Chicago painter Archibald J. Motley, Jr., which was published in 2004 in the David C. Driskell series on African American Art, and contributions to anthologies and catalogues including Beyond Face: New Perspectives in Portraiture (2018), Archibald Motley: Jazz Age Modernist (2014), Black Is Black Ain’t (2013), and Romare Bearden in the Modernist Tradition (2009). She has been awarded fellowships by the American Council of Learned Societies, the Black Metropolis Research Consortium with the Andrew Mellon Foundation, the Joyce Foundation, the National Portrait Gallery, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and the Terra Foundation for American Art. In collaboration with photography historian Dr Deborah Willis and the Museum of Contemporary Photography at Columbia College, she recently launched a digital humanities project entitled “Say It with Pictures” Then and Now that recovers and critically examines the work of Chicago’s African American photographers from the 1890s into the 1930s. As part of the Terra Foundation’s Art Design initiative, this project will generate an exhibition and catalogue that brings to light Chicago’s contributions to the formation of modern black subjectivities.
During her tenure as the Terra Foundation Visiting Professor of American Art in the Department of History of Art at the University of Oxford and a Visiting Fellow at Worcester College, Professor Mooney will complete her second book, Portraits of Noteworthy Character: Negotiating a Collective American Identity, which will be published by Duke University Press. The project investigates the ways in which individuals and institutions looked to the portrait as a means to effect social change.