KATHERINE WODEHOUSE

Print Room Manager, Department of Western Art

 
Research summary

My primary area of research is British art of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. I am currently developing an Ashmolean touring exhibition entitled ‘Romanticism Revisited’ about the British Romantic Tradition. The emergence in the 1930s of a group of British artists seeking a visual idiom in which to reconcile the achievements of the native Romantic tradition with contemporary European Modernism led the critic Raymond Mortimer to coin the term ‘neo-romanticism’ (New Statesman, March 1942). The artists described by this term such as John Piper, Paul Nash, Eric Ravilious, Graham Sutherland, and John Minton are amply represented in the Ashmolean’s collection, along with their Romantic nineteenth-century forebears including John Sell Cotman, J.M.W. Turner, and Samuel Palmer. Both groups of artists were working in the shadow of military conflict and in periods of rapid social change. This exhibition will display the work of these different artists together, as well as those of the intermediate generation including F. L. Griggs and Francis Short, demonstrating the continuity the British Romantic Tradition.
I am also interested in the relationship between Art and Christianity, and have lectured on Caravaggio and the Counter Reformation, the Eucharist in Art, the Crucifixion, Landscape and Spirituality, and metaphors of light. I am currently a member of the Oxford University Church project board 'Stations of the Cross' project for Lent and Easter 2020. My work on the exhibition F. L. Griggs: Visions of England in 2016 united these research interests. However, working in the Ashmolean’s Western Art Print Room enables me to explore a wide variety of research areas and a degree of generalist adaptability is an enjoyable necessity.

 
CV

Katherine Wodehouse is one of two Print Room Managers in the Ashmolean’s Western Art Department. She joined the Ashmolean in 2007 and managed the Picture Library for three years, prior to a year’s secondment as Print Room Assistant. She then worked on an Oxford University Museums project before spending two and a half years in the Ashmolean’s Publications Department as an Editor and Project Manager. She returned to the Western Art Print Room on secondment as a Supervisor from April 2016 and was permanently appointed to the position in June 2018.

In addition to her official duties she curated F. L. Griggs: Visions of England (Broadway Museum and Art Gallery, 2016; Museum of North Hertfordshire, Hitchin, 2017; Chippenham Museum and Heritage Centre, 2018). Her second exhibition, Skyscape, tackled 500 years of the representation of the sky in Western Art (Broadway Museum and Art Gallery, 2017; Petworth House, Sussex, 2020; Worcester City Art Gallery and Museum, 2020; Henley River and Rowing Museum, 2020–21). Her third exhibition, focussed upon French print-making in the second half of the nineteenth century, Making an Impression: Prints by Manet, Pissarro, and their Contemporaries (Broadway Museum and Art Gallery, 2018; Wolverhampton Museum and Art Gallery 2019; ZAMEK Cultural Centre Poznan, 2020; Kirkby Art Gallery, 2020). She is currently developing an Ashmolean touring exhibition about British Romanticism, Romanticism Revisited, spanning the late eighteenth to the mid-twentieth centuries. She also works as a freelance lecturer and tutor, teaching study days on Art and Christianity for various churches and for the St Albans Cathedral Study Centre, as well as tutorials to visiting students at the University of Oxford.

 
Publications
Author
  • F. L. Griggs (1876–1938): Visions of England  in The Ashmolean (no. 71, Spring 2016)
  • Josephine Butler (1828–1906): The Face of Feminism in The Ashmolean (no. 73, Spring 2017)
  • Skyscape in The Ashmolean (no. 74, Autumn 2017)
  • The Sheila Hoenigsberg in The Ashmolean (no. 75, Spring 2018)
  • Making an Impression: Prints by Manet, Pissaro and their Contemporaries in The Ashmolean (no. 76, Autumn 2018)
Joint Author
  • Great British Drawings (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2015) 
  • The Ashmolean Museum: Crossing Cultures, Crossing Time (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2014)
Editor
  • Paul Collins, Mountains and Lowlands: Ancient Iran and Mesopotamia (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2016)
  • Francesca Leoni, et al, Power and Protection: Islamic Art and the Supernatural (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2016)
  • Catherine Whistler, Baroque and Later Paintings in the Ashmolean Museum (London: Modern Art Press, 2016)
  • Catherine Whistler, et al, Drawing in Venice: Titian to Canaletto (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2015)
  • Timothy Wilson and Matthew Winterbottom, Treasures of the Goldsmith’s Art: The Michael Wellby Bequest to the Ashmolean Museum (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2015)
  • Colin Harrison, et al, Great British Drawings (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2015)
  • Clare Pollard and Mitsuko Ito Watanabe, Hiroshige: Landscape, Cityscape: Woodblock Prints in the Ashmolean Museum (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2014)
  • The Ashmolean Museum: Crossing Cultures, Crossing Time (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2014)
  • The Ashmolean, no. 66, Autumn 2013 
  • The Ashmolean, no. 67, Spring 2014 
  • The Ashmolean, no. 68, Autumn 2014 
  • The Ashmolean, no. 69, Spring 2015 
  • The Ashmolean, no. 70, Autumn 2015
  • The Ashmolean, no. 71, Spring 2016 
 
Featured projects
List of site pages