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Dr Michaela Giebelhausen

Course Leader BA Culture Criticism and Curation
Central Saint Martins
Researcher Research
Michaela  Giebelhausen


Michaela is an art historian, with research interests in the architecture of the city, the aesthetics of decay and destruction, documentary photography, the history of collections and contemporary dance. I’ve published on Pre-Raphaelite painting, museum architecture, photography and the Paris Commune.

I am completing a book on the museum as an instrument of modernity which explores the museum's claim to modernity, and investigates a broad range of museums, including fine art museums, natural history museums, and museums of history and ethnography. It also considers the gradual dematerialisation of the museum in the age of ever-growing digital data sets.

I am also working on representations of Paris and of the 1871 Paris Commune in photographs and popular prints. I investigate how the ruins of Paris constructed a different kind of tourism which oscillated between war reportage, time travel, and meditations on culture's rise and fall.

I am interested in supervising PhD students pursuing research in the fields of Victorian visual culture, museum history and theory, representations of Paris, aesthetics of decay and destruction, early photography and concepts of natural history.


Current research students

  • Richard Crawford, Taxidermy and Art. (Lead supervisor)
  • Julia Dudkiewicz, An Examination of the Multiple Histories of Kelmscott Manor (1871-1938): Myth and History. The Creation, Presentation and Representation of an Artists’ House. (Lead supervisor)
  • Abigail Abby Dyson, Ambiance & Atmosphere: Understanding the Affective Impact of Post-War Abstract Stained Glass in German Sacred Spaces (Lead supervisor)
  • Katerina Evangelou, The use of illustration to reveal the morphological diversity of European butterflies’ eyespots through a visual analysis and classification (Joint supervisor)

Past research students

  • Mary Hersov, 'The Sainsbury Wing temporary exhibition space, the National Gallery: the background to its creation, the building of the space and its critical reception' (Lead supervisor)