The Curious Professor Z is Dr. Mary F. Zawadzki. Known as “Franny” to my family and friends, I hold a doctorate from The Graduate Center, The City University of New York, in American and 19th century art history and visual culture. I specialize in illustration, the printed image, print technology, and art and aesthetic education in the 18th and 19th century in America. My current scholarship focuses on the magazines printed by The Scribner Co., later The Century Company, and their role in the art and aesthetic education movement in the late 19th century. I am currently transforming her dissertation into two book projects, one of which will making the proposal rounds soon.
My other scholarly … and not-so-scholarly … interests include mourning and mortuary art, feminist art history and theory, artists’ materials and methods of learning, political cartoons and satire, childhood and family studies, “crap art” and other ephemera, Colonial and Early American cookery, music, and costuming, and the “stuff” of everyday life in America in the 18th and 19th century. I’m also interested in the fashion and lifestyles of the 1920s, 30s, and 40s … especially Flappers, Dandies, and World War II state-side efforts like rationing and victory gardens. And in case you didn’t notice, I’m an old Punk-Goth who was born and bred in NYC.
In otherwords, The Curious Professor Z is … well … curious.