Research Area: Byzantine Art|
Advisor: Dr. Lynn Jones
Sarah Mathiesen, a doctoral candidate working with Lynn Jones, studies the art of Byzantium. Her dissertation examines the monumental decorative program of Yılanlı Kilise, a rock-cut church located in the Ihlara Valley of Cappadocia, Turkey. Sarah’s research focuses on constructions of identity in the medieval period; in her dissertation she seeks to recontextualize the painted decoration in Yılanlı as part of a rich contact zone between multiple cultures of the eastern medieval world, from Byzantium to the Islamic Caliphates, Georgia, and Armenia.
Sarah graduated with her BA from Tulane University in 2014, earning cum laude in Art History, with a double minor in Classics and History. She completed her MA at Tulane in 2015 with a thesis examining a 14th-century Byzantine manuscript of the Alexander Romance. At FSU, Sarah is a Legacy Fellow in Art History, a member of the Graduate Fellows Society, and Co-Director of the Medieval Studies Workshop. In 2019–20 she served as a university-wide Program for Instructional Excellence Teaching Associate. Outside of FSU, Sarah is a member of the Student Committee of the International Center of Medieval Art (ICMA) and co-chairs the ICMA’s new Oral History Project.
Sarah has been the recipient of the CARA Summer Scholarship from the Medieval Academy of America, the I.N. Winbury Essay Award, as well as several other grants and awards. She has presented papers nationally and internationally, including at the Byzantine Studies Conference, the International Congress of Medieval Studies, the meeting of the Middle East Studies Association, and the “Studying East of Byzantium VI: The State of the Field” workshop co-hosted by Tufts University and the Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture. Her publications include a review of Robert Ousterhout’s Eastern Medieval Architecture (Peregrinations: Journal of Medieval Art & Architecture 7, no. 2 (2020), and an essay contribution and catalog entries for Ethiopian Art in the David P. Harris Collection, Department of Art History, Kenyon College: Cultural Heritage, Identity, and the Persistence of Form (forthcoming).