Kristen Windmuller-Luna studies African art history, with a particular interest in cross-cultural exchange, early globalization, transcultural art, and the depiction of non-Western cultures in museums and popular media.
Her dissertation examines the relationship between Jesuit Roman Catholic, Ethiopian Orthodox, and Ethiopian royal art and architecture during the 16th and 17th centuries. Incorporating archival and site-based work, her research has taken her to Ethiopia, Italy, and Portugal.
Kristen holds a B.A. in the history of art from Yale University, and an M.A. in art and archaeology from Princeton University, with exam fields in African art and pre-colonial African history. She was a graduate research assistant for the Neuberger Museum of Art in Purchase, New York, where she wrote on Kotoko bronzes and Cameroonian sculpture, and was the curator of the exhibition Life in Miniature: Asante Goldweights and Sculpture at the Renee and Chaim Gross Foundation in New York City.
She has presented papers on African art and architecture and related topics at conferences and scholarly events held in the United States and in Europe, in addition to giving frequent gallery talks at museums in the New York metropolitan area. She was the organizer of the Department of Art and Archaeology’s 2012 graduate student conference “The End of the –ist and the Future of Art History.”
In addition to writing her dissertation, Kristen is the 2015–16 Sylvan C. Coleman and Pam Coleman Memorial Fund Fellow in the Department of the Arts of Africa, Oceania and the Americas at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, where she was formerly a graduate intern. From 2013 to 2015, she held the positions of Andrew W. Mellon Research Assistant in African Art and McCrindle intern at the Princeton University Art Museum.
“Guerra com a lingoa: Book Culture and Biblioclasm in the Ethiopian Jesuit Mission,” Journal of Jesuit Studies 2.2 (2015).
“Uche Okeke: Works on Paper, 1958–1993 (Review),” Ufahamu: A Journal of African Studies (UCLA) 38: 2 (2015).
“The Rock-hewn Churches of Lalibela, Ethiopia;” “Monumental Architecture and Stelae of the Aksumite Empire;” and “Ethiopian Healing Scrolls,” Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2014-2015).
“Royal Treasures of the Asante Court,” Princeton University Art Museum Magazine (Summer 2014).
“A Nigerian Song Literatus: Chinese Literati Painting Concepts from the Song Dynasty in the Contemporary Art of Obiora Udechukwu,” Rutgers Art Review 29 (2013).
Exhibition review, “Zwelethu Mthethwa, ‘New Works’ at Jack Shainman Gallery,” Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art 24 (Fall 2013).
Life in Miniature: Asante Goldweights and African Sculpture from the Collection of the Renee and Chaim Gross Foundation (Renee and Chaim Gross Foundation, 2012).