Professor Tom Henry
Professor of History of Art
- +44(0)1227 823559
Before joining the department in January 2013 my career has moved between museums and university teaching, concentrating recently on a number of international exhibition projects. I co-curated the exhibition Raphaël à Rome: les dernières années at the Musée du Louvre in Paris (closed 14.1.2013, and previously at the Museo del Prado in Madrid). Raphael has been a major research interest and I had previously co-curated Raphael: from Urbino to Rome at the National Gallery in London (2004-5). 2012 saw the publication of my study of The Life and Art of Luca Signorelli (Yale University Press) as well as the first major international loan exhibition of Signorelli’s art for 60 years which was mounted in Perugia, Orvieto and Città di Castello.
I am committed to research-led teaching and to history of art as the study of objects and artists in their cultural context. I ask the simple questions (who?, what?, when?, why?) as a prelude to the other questions that interest me, such as how artistic careers were fashioned, and how ideas travelled.
My Signorelli book has received the following reviews:
“In its scope, size and scholarly quality, and also in the illustrations, [Tom Henry’s] book, which is based on sustained research, is superior to all previous monographs on the artist and will certainly be the standard work of reference.” Charles Hope, London Review of Books
“I have always thought it a cause for regret that Signorelli ... should have fallen into the hands of the dull and diligent Tom Henry, but with this new book I must think again, for the diligence now has the pace and polish required by the brilliance of Signorelli’s most famous frescoes ... this account of a briefly great painter will be for decades the authoritative text.” Brian Sewell, Evening Standard
back to top
“Tom Henry’s book is a classic of its kind . . . [and] gives you all the historical and visual knowledge necessary to go forth and look at Signorelli’s paintings on your own.”?Svetlana Alpers, Key Reporter
Also view these in the Kent Academic Repository
I have taught many aspects of Italian renaissance art, and try to align my teaching with my current research projects.
back to top
I completed two long-term projects centred on the art of Raphael and that of Luca Signorelli in 2012, and I have now moved on to new projects. One of these is a study of artists and artistic centres in Central Italy. The project is going to address the limitations of monographic and city-centred research by interweaving elements of both into a broader study which will also develop my interest in issues of ‘centre’ and ‘periphery’ and to the questions of how artists and artistic ideas travelled. The foundations of this study flow out of my researches into the activity of Signorelli and Raphael in Tuscany and Umbria. A building block in this project is a plan to publish Italian renaissance documents on line (funded 2014-15 by the Samuel H. Kress Foundation).
back to top
I have recently given research papers on Raphael, Perugino and Signorelli, as well as Piero della Francesca and Piero di Cosimo.
I do not currently have any PhD students but would welcome the chance to supervise students in my areas of expertise. The last PhD that I supervised to completion was a study of patronage in Perugia c.1420-1530.back to top