Warren T. Woodfin
Kallinikeion Assistant Professor
Department of Art and Department of History
Warren Woodfin’s courses at Queens College cover the history of the Byzantine Empire (from the fourth to the fifteenth century) as well as the arts of Late Antiquity and Byzantium. He has taught specialized courses on Byzantium and the Crusades, on artistic interchange between Byzantium and Islam, and during the fall Semester 2015, he is teaching a special course on “Arts of the Silk Road” in connection with the Year of Silk Roads.
Dr. Woodfin’s research focuses on the art and archaeology of Byzantium and its cultural sphere in the eleventh through fifteenth centuries. Since 2006, he has been collaborating with a research team of U.S.- and Ukraine-based scholars to study a medieval burial complex in the Black Sea steppe. The site, called the Chungul Kurgan, yielded a trove of medieval textiles, precious metalwork, and other artifacts interred with a nomadic leader during the early thirteenth century. His article on the textiles from the burial (co-authored with Renata Holod and Yuriy Rassamakin) appeared in Ars Orientalis 38 (2010); a further article on a silver cup from the burial will appear in The Art Bulletin in 2016. He has also published articles in the journals Gesta and Dumbarton Oaks Papers, and has contributed essays to various edited volumes.
Dr. Woodfin has long had a particular interest in textiles and their imagery. His book on Byzantine textiles and their role in ritual and hierarchy, The Embodied Icon: Liturgical Vestments and Sacramental Power in Byzantium, was published by Oxford University Press in 2012. He is also the co-editor (with Mateusz Kapustka) of Clothing the Sacred: Medieval Textiles as Fabric, Form, and Metaphor (Berlin: Edition Imorde, 2015). In 2015, he also guest-curated an installation at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, “Liturgical Textiles of the Post-Byzantine World,” highlighting rarely-displayed embroideries and textiles of the Orthodox Church dating from the fifteenth to eighteenth centuries.
Prior to joining the faculty at Queens College, Woodfin held teaching and research posts at Duke, Princeton, the University of Pennsylvania and the Metropolitan Museum. Most recently, he had a European Research Council-sponsored fellowship at the University of Zurich. During the spring semester of 2016, he will be a resident Fellow at the Israel Institute for Advanced Studies in Jerusalem.