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Professor Jaś Elsner

BA (Hons), MA, MA, PhD

Jaś Elsner is the Humfry Payne Senior Research Fellow in Classical Archaeology and Art at Corpus Christi College and the Faculty of Classics.

HIs research looks at the way art was viewed in antiquity, which has led to an interest in all kinds of reception from ritual and pilgrimage in the case of religious art to the literary description of art (including the rhetorical technique known as ekphrasis) to the more recent collecting and display of art as well as its modern historiography and receptions. Since the art of antiquity has such a privileged, indeed canonical, position in our culture, the study of its receptions is an exploration of more recent history’s varied, competing and often ideologically understandings of its own past. Recently, Professor Elsner has explored a more global and comparative approach to the history of art, encompassing at least the arts of Eurasia.

Research interests: Classical and Late Antique Art; the Reception of Ancient Art; Ekphrasis