History of Art and Architecture

Colleen O'Reilly



Colleen O’Reilly is a PhD candidate in History of Art and Architecture at the University of Pittsburgh.  Her research is in the history of photography and in the history of the use of images in education, especially science education directed at youth and the general public in the U.S. during the Cold War era.  She is interested in intersections between art and science in photography and in representation more broadly. Her dissertation will bring together the scientific photography of Berenice Abbott, the science exhibits of Will Burtin, and an American mid-century discourse on “visual literacy.”

Education Details

University of Pittsburgh 2012-Present. Ph.D. Program, History of Art and Architecture Admitted to Candidacy – December 2014. Dissertation: “Visual Pedagogy, Visual Literacy, and Photography in the U.S. 1945 – 1970.”

York University MA, Art History, Diploma in Curatorial Practice, 2010.Thesis: "Stephen Andrews – Images of War and an Exploration of Photographic Information."

University of Toronto, Hon.  BA, Specialist in Fine Art History with French, 2007. Included one year of exchange at Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3/Université Lumière Lyon 2.  

Selected Publications

"Pedagogical Interventions: The Physics Photographs of Berenice Abbott,” RACAR: Revue d’art canadienne/Canadian Art Review, Vol. 41, No. 2 (2016), 72-85

Selected Conferences

"Will Burtin's Touring Exhibitions and the Visual Display of American Science," Marshalling American Art: Exhibition Ideology in the Cold War, Tate, London 2015.

"'Snowflake' Bentley, Ukichiro Nakaya, and Snow Crystal Photomicography," Art History Graduate Student Association 40th Annual Symposium, Department of History of Art and Architecture, University of California, Santa Barbara, 2015.