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Mirjam Brusius

Image of Mirjam Brusius

I am interested in the history of collecting and visual culture across Modern Europe and the Middle East. I hold an MA in Art History (Berlin 2007) and a doctorate in History and Philosophy of Science (Cambridge University 2011). My first monograph and co-edited volume revisited the early history of photography, in particular the scholarly archive and network of the photographic pioneer William Henry Fox Talbot. My current book project examines the value of Middle Eastern archaeological objects during the transition period on their way to Europe when the finds seem to have "no status". The project investigates the subsequent processes of canonization and decanonization these objects caused upon their arrival in the leading museums of Paris, London and Berlin in the long 19th century.

I also write articles and essays on photography and heritage debates in the Middle East and collaborate with artists. Recently, I co-edited a special issue on photography, antiquity and scholarship for the journal History of Photography. A forthcoming volume, to be published by Routledge, is entitled ‘Museum Storage and Meaning: Tales from the Crypt’ (co-edited with Kavita Singh).

In 2016/17 I will co-organize several events on heritage in collaboration with the Sydney Centre for the Foundation of Science and the Centre for Anthropological Research on Museums and Heritage at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. I previously worked as a Postdoc at Oxford’s Bodleian Libraries and the History Faculty (A.W. Mellon Fellowship), at Harvard University and the Max Planck Institute.