Karen  Gonzalez Rice

Sue and Eugene Mercy Assistant Professor of Art History

Joined Connecticut College: 2011

B.A., M.A., University of Texas at Austin
Ph.D., Duke University


Contemporary art (1945-present)

Experimental art

Performance studies

Contemporary art and the body

American studies; contemporary art in America

Religion in contemporary art

Trauma studies

Art and ethics

Karen Gonzalez Rice's approach to teaching and research is multidisciplinary, drawing on methodologies of contemporary art history, religious studies, American studies and trauma studies. Her courses include Late 20th-Century Art, Pop Art, and Survey of the History of Art II: Renaissance to the Present, and upper-level courses such as Environmental Art & Its Ethics, Minimalism and the American West, and Radical Bodies: Contemporary Art & Action.

Karen Gonzalez Rice, Sue and Eugene Mercy Assistant Professor, Department of Art History Gonzalez Rice joined Connecticut College in 2011. She received her Ph.D. from Duke University’s Department of Art, Art History & Visual Studies in 2010.

Gonzalez Rice is committed to ethical inquiry and lively debate in and beyond the classroom, and her courses often draw on local art resources. Student projects include researching Sol Lewitt sculptures on campus and in the town of New London, analyzing art historical narratives in exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and presenting public gallery talks about their research on campus artworks.

Gonzalez Rice is completing a book manuscript titled Long Suffering: Surviving Trauma and Living Religion in American Endurance Art, which explores the intersection of twentieth-century American avant-garde performance art with traditions of prophetic religious discourse in the United States. An excerpt from the book is included in the edited anthology Beyond Belief: Theoaesthetics or Old-Time Religion? (2010). A related article, “‘No Pictures:’ Blind Date and Abject Masculinity” will appear in Performance Research in February 2014. Her next project, Forming the Habit: Monastic Commitment in Contemporary Art, traces representations of monasticism in American popular visual culture and in avant-garde performance art in the 1970s.

Gonzalez Rice has also taught at Duke University and at Beloit College.

At Connecticut College, she has served on several committees, including Writing Across the Curriculum Board and the Instructional Technology Advisory Board.

Visit the art history department website.

Majoring in art history.

Contact Karen  Gonzalez Rice

Mailing Address

Karen  Gonzalez Rice
Connecticut College
Box #5346
270 Mohegan Ave.
New London, CT 06320


209 Cummings Arts Center