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Dr. Ingrid R. Vermeulen
Associate Professor of Early Modern Art History
Coordinator master programme Curating Art and Cultures


I am fascinated by the roots of the discipline of art history in the practices of collecting and writing in networks of scholars, collectors, dealers and artists in Western Europe in the long eighteenth century. Therefore I am especially interested in the history of collecting and the museum, the historiography of art and the artistic media of printmaking and drawing. Art works have been the object of study already since classical antiquity, and certainly since the Renaissance. Yet, it is in particular since the period of the Enlightenment that the study of art works and their history acquired the form in which it is still practiced today at such diverse places as the university, the museum or the art market. With my research I aim to contribute from a historical perspective to the changes within art history that have been brought about by postmodernism and visual culture studies since the end of the twentieth century.


In my book Picturing Art History. The Rise of the Illustrated History of Art in the Eighteenth Century (AUP 2010) I studied the ways in which pictures such as prints, drawings and book illustrations assembled in collections became indispensable tools to study the artistic past. In cosmopolitan Rome such collections provided direct motives for scholars of different nationalities such as Giovanni Bottari to propose the illustration of Giorgio Vasari’s seminal Vite (1759-60), for Johann Joachim Winckelmann to comparatively explore artistic progress in ancient and early modern times (1767) and for Jean-Baptist Seroux d’Agincourt to study and illustrate the first history of medieval art (1810-23). Because they all emphaticallly endorsed the value of observation and connoisseurship – both in practice and in theory – they accorded a key role to the appearance of art works as evidence of the artistic past, and thus fundamentally changed the history of artists into the history of art.

In a range of subsequent articles I explored further case studies from different perspectives such as the reception of art and artists, the mediatization of art-historical ideas and the reproduction of art. For example, they comprise the Rembrandt album in the collection of Michel de Marolles in Paris, the print collection of Pieter Cornelis Baron van Leyden which would become the founding collection of the Amsterdam Rijksmuseum print room, the various collections of early Italian art in the Uffizi in Florence and the print collection of Leiden University under the directorship of Humbert de Superville in the first half of the nineteenth century. Recently I have developed an interst for the sometimes biassed national motives that underscored much art-historical research in Enlightenment Europe. With the help of an NWO Aspasia fund and in collaboration with the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam I am now developing this research under the title of The Artistic Taste of Nations.

Much of my research would not have been possible without the invaluable facilities and support of the KNIR Rome, the NIKI Florence and the Fondation Custodia Paris.



- Clue+:

- AUP: (research)



- Fondation Custodia:


The larger part of my teaching is devoted to the master programme Curating Art and Cultures (before Museumconservator). I give lectures and seminars and arrange and give input for working visits and excursions within the core courses Collecting, Curating and Display and Curatorial Practices in the Contemporary World together with my colleagues from the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and the Universiteit van Amsterdam. With them I also attend our students during their year-long internship as curators-in-training in many of the museums with whom we work together. The remaining part of my teaching is divided between a seminar Visual Art within the master programme ‘Kunst, markt en connaisseurschap’ (Art, Market and Connoisseurship), and a lecture and seminar course Production and reception of Early Modern Visual Arts within the bachelor programme ‘Media, Kunst, Design en Architectuur’ (Media, Art, Design and Architecture).

-Master programme Curating Art and Cultures:

- Masteropleiding Kunst, Markt en Connaisseurschap:

- Bacheloropleiding Media, Kunst, Design en Architectuur:


NWO Aspasia              E 200.000,-
VU Talentgelden        E 60.000,-

Koninklijk Nederlands Instituut Rome (KNIR)

Nederlands Interuniversitair Kunsthistorisch Instituut (NIKI), Florence

Prizes and Awards

2011-2015 Nomination Karel van Mander prize, Vereniging van Nederlandse Kunsthistorici (VNK)


1999-2006 Doctorate Degree, Phd-thesis Picturing Art History. The Rise of the Illustrated History of Art in the Eighteenth Century, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

1991-1997 Master’s Degree Art History and Archaeology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

1993-1994 Art History, Erasmus programme, University of Leicester, United Kingdom

Ancillary activities

  • Wetenschappelijke Adviesraad, Nederlands Interuniversitair Kunsthistorisch Instituut (NIKI) | Florence | Lid Wetenschappelijke Adviesraad | 2015-09-01 - present
  • Oud Holland, Journal for Art of the Low Countries | Den Haag | Lid redactie | 2019-03-01 - present
  • Research School for Art History (OSK) | Amsterdam | Chair section Early Modern Art | 2020-09-01 - present
  • Amsterdam Museum | Amsterdam | Lid onderzoeksgroep Huis Willet-Holthuysen | 2021-09-01 - present

Ancillary activities are updated daily


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