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Kyunghee Pyun, PhD


Office Location: Business and Liberal Arts B649
Phone: 212 217.4648
E-mail: kyunghee_pyun@fitnyc.edu

Dr. Pyun is a specialist of Asian art as well as European medieval art. She has been publishing on topics related to Asian-American visual culture and reception of Asian art in Europe and North America while she developed her doctoral dissertation into a book on Jean Pucelle, a French manuscript illuminator of the fourteenth century. Her other research interests include Global trade of decorative arts in pre-modern Eurasia and Americas; usage and reception of visual art in context of religious performance and liturgy; interplay of word and image; and history of art collections.

Professor Pyun’s experience of teaching a diverse range of cultural exchange between Europe and Asia, for example, has become an article, “A Journey through the Silk Road in a Cosmopolitan Classroom” in Teaching Medieval and Early-Modern Cross-Cultural Encounters Across Disciplines and Eras edited by Lynn Shutters and Karina Attar (Palgrave, 2014). She was a 2015 recipient of the Field Research Grant Korea Foundation for a project called "Decoding Landscape in Portraiture Painting: A Cross-cultural Perspective." She is a Leon Levy Fellow for the Center for History of Collecting at the Frick Collection in 2017. Established at the Frick Art Reference Library in 2007, this prestigious long-term fellowship supports her book project entitled “Collecting Asian Art: Discerning Languages for Exotic” as part of the center’s mission to encourage the study of collectors and collections of fine and decorative arts in Europe and the United States from the Renaissance to the present day. Forthcoming is the co-edited volume, Fashion, Identity, and Power in Modern Asia (under contract with Palgrave Macmillan), which include about 12 essays by costume historians, literary scholars, and art historians from Japan, Taiwan, Korea, U.K., and the U.S. and discuss dress reforms in modern Asia.

Before coming to FIT, Dr. Pyun taught at many colleges and universities in New York including Pratt Institute, Brooklyn College, Hunter College, Wagner College, Manhattanville College, Montclair State University, New School University Parsons School of Design, and The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. In addition to teaching, Dr. Pyun contributes to not-for-profit organizations to support visual artists and advocate their works, especially public art projects. She is a member of the College Art Association, International Congress on Medieval Studies, Alliance of American Museums, and the Association of Asian Studies. She has also developed programs and written grant proposals for the Archive of Korean Artists in America (AKAA). She is often invited to give public talks on broad topics of art and culture. She has been a curator of contemporary art since 2011 including the Lineage of Vision: Progress through Persistence held at Gallery Korea of Korean Cultural Service New York in 2014.

Professor Pyun is engaged with initiatives of new technology and international learning. She teaches online courses of East Asian Art and Civilization (HA221) and Korean Art and Civilization (HA229) at FIT’s Center for Online Learning and Academic Technologies. She participated in the Latin America Academy for The US-Mexico Multistate COIL Program (MCP) organized by The Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) Center, SUNY in 2016. She has taught a COIL module with Professor Angelica Sterling at Universidad del Caribe, Cancun, Mexico since 2016 and plans another collaborative learning with Professor Ruiling Feng at Tianjin Normal University in 2017.  She also received SUNY Innovative Instructional Technology Grant (SUNY IITG) in 2016 to create a web-based platform for educational videos, Diverse Techniques of Asian Art and Crafts: Interactive Media. Since 2014, Professor Pyun organizes a lecture series Primary Sources in Costume/Textile History and Design with four speakers each year, funded by the Student-Faculty Corporation of Fashion Institute of Technology.


BA (summa cum laude), Art History, Seoul National University; Completion of Graduate Program, College of Humanities, Seoul National University
MA and PhD, History of Art, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University

Selected Recent Publications

Fashion, Identity, Power in Modern Asia, edited by Kyunghee Pyun and Aida Yuen Wong (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, forthcoming 2018)

“The Master of the Remède de Fortune and Parisian Manuscript Production circa 1350.” In An Illuminated Manuscript of the ‘Collected Works’ of Guillaume de Machaut (BnF, ms. fr. 1586): A Vocabulary for Exegesis, ed. by Domenic Leo (Turnhout: Brepols, 2017), forthcoming.

“Jean Pucelle” with Anna Russakoff. In Allgemeines Künstlerlexikon (Encyclopedia of Artists of the World) (Berlin: Walter de Gruyter GmbH, forthcoming 2017-2018).

“Portraying Monks in Illuminated Service Books in the Fourteenth Century.” Journal of the Association of Western Art History, Vol. 45 no. 1 (2016): 149-184.

“A Journey through the Silk Road in a Cosmopolitan Classroom.” A chapter in Teaching Medieval and Early-Modern Cross-Cultural Encounters Across Disciplines and Eras edited by Lynn Shutters and Karina Attar (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014), pp. 53-70

Co-Editor with Anna Russakoff, Jean Pucelle: Innovation and Collaboration in Manuscript Painting (Turnhout: Brepols, 2013)

“Pucellian Influence in Illuminated Liturgical Manuscripts around 1350.” In Jean Pucell: Innovation and Collaboration in Manuscript Painting, ed. Kyunghee Pyun and Anna Russakoff (Turnhout: Brepols, 2013), pp. 171-96.

“Introduction and Korean Artists in New York 1955-1989.” In Coloring Time: An Exhibition from the Archive of Korean-American Artists, Part One (1955-1989) edited by Kyunghee Pyun (New York: AHL Foundation, 2013), pp. 15-22; 39-62.

“Asian Art in the Eyes of American Collectors, 1880-1920: Antimodernism and Exotic Desire.” Journal of Contemporary Art Studies 15 no. 2 (2011): 245-278.

“End of Iconography? Introducing New Trends of Iconology in Medieval Studies.” Art History and Visual Culture 9 (2010): 222-271.

“Foundation Legends in the Illuminated Missal of Saint-Denis: Interplay of Liturgy, Hagiography, and Chronicle.” Viator 39 no. 2 (2008): 143-192.

“Great Expectations: The Legacy of Teaching at Two Art Schools in New York.” Sculpture Review vol. 4 no. 1 (Spring 2006), 8-15.

“Leo Bible and the Historiography of Byzantine Manuscript Illumination.” Art History and Visual Culture 2 (2003): 148-172.

Selected Public Lectures

“Predicament of Contemporary Artists: Represent or Subdue Ethnicity?” AHL Foundation Public Lecture Series 2012 in Collaboration with Korean Cultural Center NY in New York City, 30 November 2016 (KCCNY) (DAAN)

“Aesthetics of Asian Art Collectors at the Turn of the 20th Century.” Exploring Aesthetics of Traditional Korean Art. AHL Foundation Public Lecture Series 2012 in Collaboration with Korean Cultural Service NY in New York City, 14 November 2012 (video)

“The Decorative Program of the V&A Missal of Saint-Denis and the Liturgy at the Royal Abbey in the Fourteenth Century.” New York Medieval Liturgy Group Lectures at MOBIA (Museum of Biblical Art) in New York City, 15 September 2005


  • HA 111 – History of Western Art and Civilization: Ancient to Medieval
  • HA 112 – History of Western Art and Civilization: Renaissance to Modern Era
  • HA 211 – Asian American Art and Design
  • HA 221 – East Asian Art and Civilization
  • HA 225 – Art and Civilization of India
  • HA 229 – Korean Art and Civilization
  • HA 271 – Japanese Art and Civilization
  • HA 303 – Tradition and Innovation in Asian Art and Design (Study Abroad)
  • HA 311 – Medieval Art
  • HA 383 – Art of the Silk Road: Cross-Cultural Encounters (Honors)