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Caroline LaPorte-Burns
Doctoral Candidate, Department of Art History & Communication Studies, McGill University

Caroline LaPorte-Burns is a doctoral candidate in art history at McGill University, where she works with Dr. Angela Vanhaelen. Her dissertation examines the relationship between violence and the market for ornament in its survey of early modern Dutch pearl and mother-of-pearl trade networks and craft workshops. She studies this instance of the burgeoning economic, artistic, and social relationship between humans and the ocean to consider an aesthetics of the sea, where bodies of water are conceptualized as social spaces, repositories of imagination and invention, and galleries of both resource accumulation and human and environmental loss.

Caroline's research has been supported by the Fonds de Recherche du Québec-Société et Culture (2023-2026), the Historians of Netherlandish Art (HNA), and the Max Stern Museum Fellowship. She is the 2023-2024 recipient of the Fred and Betty Price Faculty of Arts Research Award. As a Price awardee, she serves as Curatorial Research Fellow in the collection of European Art (before 1800) at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. 

Prior to entering the PhD program in 2020, Caroline received a BA in Art History and German from Barnard College of Columbia University, and an MA in Art History from The Courtauld Institute of Art, where she worked with Dr. Joanna Woodall.

Jan van der Straet, Pearl Diving, 1596-1598. Pen and brown ink with wash and white body colour, on laid paper. The Courtauld: D.1952.RW.1633

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