Dr. Radha Dalal

Interim Director of Art History

Contact

+974 4402 0779
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353A

Specialization

Islamic Art and Architecture

Education

2011     Doctor of Philosophy, University of Minnesota, Art History, Islamic Art and Architecture. Thesis: At the Crossroads of Modernity, Space, and Identity: Istanbul and the Orient Express Train.

2003    Master of Arts, University of Minnesota, Art History, Islamic Art and Architecture; East Asian Art and Architecture. Thesis A: Travelogues and Dead Cities: An Historiographic Study of Nineteenth-Century Khiva (Islamic Art). Thesis B: Rereading the Yuan: Expressions of Archaism and Individualism in Landscape Painting (East Asian Art).

1999   Bachelor of Arts, University of Maryland, Art History and Archaeology.
1999   Bachelor of Science, University of Maryland, Physiology and Neurobiology.

Biography

Professor Radha Dalal researches visual cultures of mobility and urbanism with a particular emphasis on the Ottoman Empire and its socio-political interactions with other European and Asian polities during the 19th and early 20th centuries.  In her dissertation, supported by grants from the Samuel H. Kress and MacArthur Foundations, she explored the evocations of loss, nostalgia, and communitas embedded in the visual and literary intersections of Istanbul and the Orient Express train. Her current research examines the narratives of modernity crafted through photography, architecture, and postcard printing in Istanbul during the twilight years of the Ottoman Empire.  Part of a five-person research team, she is also working on a Qatar National Research Fund’s National Priorities Research Program grant titled “Museums in the 21st Century and Global Art History: Building Knowledge Base through Online Resources in Qatar.”  At Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar, Dr. Dalal teaches global and Islamic art surveys as well as a variety of upper division courses in Islamic art and East Asian art.  Prior to joining VCU Qatar, she taught Art History and Asian Studies at the College of Charleston.

Research Interests

  • The visual cultures of mobility within the Ottoman Empire in the 19th and early 20th centuries
  • The visual propaganda of the Khilafat movement in India
  • Cultural heritage and museum studies
  • Theories of collective memory
  • Histories of photography and urbanism.  

Teaching Experience

2012 - Present Assistant Professor, Department of Art History, VCUarts Qatar

2009-2012    Research Associate and Instructor, Department of Art History, College of Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina

2009-2012    Instructor, Online Program, Tidewater Community College, Virginia Beach, Virginia

2008    Instructor, Tidewater Community College, Virginia Beach, Virginia

2005    Instructor, Inver Hills Community College, Inver Hills, Minnesota

Publications

Dalal, Radha. “Negotiating Modernity in the Posters of the Orient Express.” Journal of Early Popular Visual Culture (article currently under review)

Dalal, Radha, Sean Roberts, and Jochen Sokoly eds. The Seas and the Mobility of Islamic Art. Yale University Press. (forthcoming 2021)

Dalal, Radha. “Scroll, Firman with a Tughra of Sultan Süleyman the Magnificent,” “Iznik Flask,” and “Iznik Dish” catalogue entries for the Museum of Islamic Art catalogue, Doha, Qatar. (forthcoming)

Dalal, Radha. “The Public Space of the Bakewell Ottoman Garden.” In Travelers in Ottoman Lands: The Botanical Legacy, edited by Ines Asceric-Todd, Sabina Knees, Janet Starkey, and Paul Starkey, 69-88. Oxford: ASTENE and Archaeopress Publishing, 2018.

Dalal, Radha, et. al. Global Art History, Visual Cultures of the Islamic World, and Museum Studies Educational Modules. Website developed for the QNRF NPRP grant “Museums in the 21st Century and Global Art History: Building Knowledge Base through Online Resources in Qatar.” http://vcuqatar.rampages.us/

Chandra, Aditi; Leda Cempellin; Kristen Chiem; Abigail Lapin Dardashti; Radha J. Dalal; Ellen Kenney; Sadia Pasha Kamran; Nina Murayama; and James P. Elkins. 2016. "Looking Beyond the Canon: Localized and Globalized Perspectives in Art History Pedagogy." Art History Pedagogy & Practice 1. http://academicworks.cuny.edu/ahpp/vol1/iss1/2

Dalal, Radha. “In Search of the Relics of War: From the American Colony in Jerusalem to the Red Cross Museum in Washington, DC,” NEH Summer Seminar Blog, Georgetown University, October 2014. https://blogs.commons.georgetown.edu/world-war-i-in-the-middle-east/seminar- participants/web-projects-2014/radha-dalal/

Dalal, Radha. “The Great Mosque of Isfahan,” "The Great Mosque (or Masjid-e Jameh) of Isfahan," in Smarthistory, August 8, 2015, accessible at https://smarthistory.org/the-great-mosque-or-masjid-e-jameh-of-isfahan/.

Dalal, Radha. "The Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Camii)," in Smarthistory, August 8, 2015, accessible at https://smarthistory.org/the-blue-mosque-sultan-ahmet-camii/.

Dalal, Radha. “Spaces of the Past: Nostalgia in the Murder on the Orient Express and The Last Express.” In Engaging with Videogames: Play, Theory and Practice, edited by Dawn Stobbart and Monica Evans, 265-275. Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press, 2014.

Presentations

Dalal, Radha. “The Khilafat Movement and the Satirical Press,” Globalizing Islam panel, Middle East Studies Association, New Orleans, November 16, 2019.

Dalal, Radha. “In Travelers’ Dreams: The Public Space of the Bakewell Ottoman Garden” Travelers in Ottoman Lands: The Botanical Legacy, Association for the Study of Travel in Egypt and the Near East (ASTENE) Annual Conference, Edinburgh, May 14, 2017.

Dalal, Radha. “The Aesthetics of Distance: Constantinople in Illustrated Travelogues” Reconsidering Cultural Ideologies and Identities in India and Beyond, Delhi University, New Delhi, March 18, 2016.

Dalal, Radha. “A Pedagogical Turn: Shifting Center/Periphery in Qatar’s Art History Curriculum,” Teaching Western and Non-Western Art History: Starting a Global Conversation panel, College Art Association Annual Conference, Washington, DC, February 5, 2016.

Dalal, Radha. “Postcarding the Capital: Representations of Ottoman Istanbul, 1890-1914” Metropolitan History Seminar, University College London, London, England, March 18, 2015.

Dalal, Radha. “Tipu Sultan in the European Imaginary.” Part of the Tiger’s Dream: Tipu Sultan Exhibition lecture series, Museum of Islamic Art, Doha, Qatar, January 14, 2015.

Dalal, Radha. “Intertextual Representations of Modernity: Max Fruchtermann’s Postcards and the Sultan Abdul Hamid II Photo Albums.” Visualizing Modernity in the Nineteenth Century: Photography and Print Culture from the Middle East panel, Middle East Studies Association, Washington, DC, November 22, 2014.

Dalal, Radha. “Placing the Spectator on the Scene of Conquest: Istanbul’s 1453 Panorama History Museum.” The Bodhi Tree and the Orchid Symposium in honor of Professors Catherine and Frederick Asher, College Art Association, Chicago, February 15, 2014.

Dalal, Radha. “Istanbul and the Cartography of Modernity in the Posters of the Orient Express.” Borders and Mobility in Cinema, Literature and Pictures panel. 11th Annual Conference of the International Association for the History of Transport, Traffic, and Mobility on Intangible Borders, Kouvala, Finland and St. Petersburg, Russia, September 26, 2013.

Dalal, Radha. “Spaces of the Past: Nostalgia in The Murder on the Orient Express and The Last Express.” Videogame Cultures panel, 5th Global Conference on Videogame Cultures, Mansfield College, Oxford, England, July 15, 2013.

Dalal, Radha. “Journeying into the Past: The Orient Express and the Creation of ‘Ottoman’ Spectacle.” The Past in the Present: History as Practice in Art, Design, and Architecture conference. The Glasgow School of Art, Glasgow, Scotland, October 27, 2007.

Dalal, Radha. “Excavating Footsteps: Nineteenth and Twentieth-Century Travelogues on Khiva.” 3rd Annual Conference of the Central Eurasian Society, University of Wisconsin, Madison, October 19, 2002.

Funded Research Projects and Grants

2019    Distinguished Achievement in Research Award, VCUarts Qatar. Award nominations are vetted by committee and presented annually to honor outstanding faculty members whose records of accomplishments and contributions are significant and meritorious.

2017-2020    Presidential Research Quest Fund Grant, “The Khilafat Movement and Print Media in British India and Ottoman Turkey, 1919-1924,” VCUarts Qatar.

2017-2018    Qatar National Research Fund’s (QNRF) National Priorities Research Program (NPRP) Grant, “Museums in the 21st Century and Global Art History: Building Knowledge Base through Online Resources in Qatar,” Lead Principal Investigator, VCUarts Qatar.

2016    Faculty Exploratory Grant, “The Study of Urban Form through Photography in Nineteenth-Century Istanbul,” VCUarts Qatar.

2015-2017    Qatar National Research Fund’s (QNRF) National Priorities Research Program (NPRP) Grant, “Museums in the 21st Century and Global Art History: Building Knowledge Base through Online Resources in Qatar,” Principal Investigator, VCUarts Qatar.

2014    National Endowment of the Humanities Summer Seminar Grant, “World War I in the Middle East and North Africa,” Georgetown University.

2014    Faculty Research Grant, “Intertextual Representations of Modernity: Max Fruchtermann’s Postcards and the Sultan Abdul Hamid II Photo Albums,” VCUarts Qatar.

2013     Center for Teaching Excellence Grant, “Online Course Development Initiative,” VCU Richmond.

2013      Faculty Research Grant, “The Khilafat Movement and Pictorial Satire in Britain, British India, and Ottoman Turkey,” VCUarts Qatar.

Honors

  • 2015-2017 Qatar Foundation National Priorities Research Program Grant, “Museums in the 21st Century and Global Art History: Building Knowledge Base through Online Resources in Qatar,” with co-PIs Drs. Dina Bangdel, Michael Schreffler, Karen Exell, and Jelena Trkulja.
  • 2014 NEH Summer Seminar Grant, “World War I in the Middle East and North Africa,” Georgetown University       
  • 2014 Faculty Research Grant, Virginia Commonwealth University, Qatar
  • 2013 Center for Teaching Excellence Grant, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA
  • 2007 Getty Library Research Grant, The J. Paul Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles
  • 2006-2007 Kress Travel Fellowship, Samuel H. Kress Foundation, New York
  • 2006-2007 MacArthur Dissertation Grant, ICGC, University of Minnesota
  • 2006 Language Study Grant (Ottoman Turkish), Institute of Turkish Studies, Georgetown University
  • 2005 MacArthur Pre-dissertation Grant, University of Minnesota
  • 2001-2002 MacArthur Interdisciplinary Program on Global Change, Sustainability and Justice Fellowship, University of Minnesota

Professional Service

  • 2012-2015 Appointed Member, International Committee, College Art Association (CAA)
  • 2013 Field Study Co-Leader, Greek Temples Site in Agrigento, Sicily with Dr. Leah Long, Virginia  Commonwealth University, Qatar
  • 2013 Faculty Observer, Islamic Art in Spain Course with Dr. Michael Schreffler, Collaboration between Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA and University of Cordoba, Spain
  • 2013 Workshop Co-Leader, Tasmeem Art and Design Conference Art History Workshop on “Objects as Locus of Hybridity and Hybrid Making: Transcultural, Transhistorical, and Global Explorations,” Virginia Commonwealth University, Qatar