Mary McGuire

Mary McGuire
Graduate Alumni


Areas of Concentration: Contemporary Art and Photography
Faculty Advisor: Laurie Monahan
Committee Members: Jenni Sorkin, E. Bruce Robertson
Dissertation: "Theological Avant-Garde: The Arts Program at the Judson Memorial Church, 1958-1968"
M.A. Thesis: "The Preservation of Marcel Duchamp's Institutional Critique," completed 2009


Mary McGuire is a Ph.D. Candidate in the History of Art and Architecture department at the University of California Santa Barbara. She is currently finalizing her dissertation, "Theological Avant-Garde: The Arts Program at the Judson Memorial Church, 1958-1968," which connects the emergence of socially engaged artistic practice to ecclesiological, liturgical, and theological practices. Specializing in contemporary art and photography, her research interests include post-World War II American art, transnational contemporary art, performance studies, photography and film theory, histories and theories of the avant-garde, theology, gender studies, feminist and queer theory, and psychoanalysis.

Mary has held curatorial fellowships at the UCSB Art, Design & Architecture Museum, where she facilitated the production of numerous student-based curatorial and educational projects. At the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, she worked as a curatorial assistant and contributed biographical entries to the Labour and Wait (2013) exhibition catalog. She has co-curated a campus-wide exhibition and event series at UCSB, and has contributed to many other exhibition-based projects and publications.

She has instructed courses in Contemporary Art, the History of Photography, Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, a survey of Modern-Contemporary Art, and a Docent Apprenticeship. She has organized and participated in numerous scholarly conferences, including delivering a paper at the 2009 College Art Association conference. Her article, "Performing Agency in Carolee Schneemann’s The Queen’s Dog (1965)" is forthcoming from Ashgate Press for the anthology American Women Artists, 1935-1970 (Eds. Helen Langa and Paula Wisotzki, January 2016).