Elise Y. Chagas is a Ph.D. candidate specializing in modern and contemporary art. Rooted in the study of Latin American art, she is primarily interested in how art mediates political and cultural resistance to exploitative and extractive processes of modernity. Problems of enduring concern in her work include the critique of institutions and ideology, abstraction, and the possibilities and limitations of art as activism. At Princeton, Elise’s research has been supported by the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies and the Program in Latin American Studies, where she was a 2018–2019 Lassen Fellow.
Elise holds a B.A. in Art History from Northwestern University, with minors in Gender and Sexuality Studies and Critical Theory, and an M.A. from the Graduate Program in the History of Art at Williams College and the Clark Art Institute. While at Williams, she was Graduate Curatorial Fellow at MASS MoCA in nearby North Adams, where she curated Etel Adnan: A yellow sun A green sun a yellow sun A red sun a blue sun. Before entering graduate school, she worked in programming and fundraising for Public Art Fund in New York City.