Alfred University News

Alfred University faculty to present at College Art Association conference

Alfred University faculty Hope Childers, Bethany Johnson, and Meghen Jones will be presenting at the College Art Association (CAA) conference in New York City Feb. 15.

Alfred University faculty Hope Childers, Bethany Johnson, and Meghen Jones will be presenting at the College Art Association (CAA) conference in New York City Feb. 15.

Founded in 1911, CAA has over 12,000 individual members—artists, art historians, educators, curators, critics, and others in the field of visual arts. Its annual conference is the largest international gathering of visual arts professionals. This year’s event will feature over 300 sessions selected from more than 900 submissions.

Dr. Hope Childers, professor of Art History in the School of Art and Design, and Dr. Bethany Johnson, professor of psychology in the College of Liberal Arts and Science, will conduct a professional development workshop centered around their ongoing Content Advisories project. Many CAA attendees will already understand that Art/Art History learning environments can include difficult, provocative, or even distressing content, Childers noted. “Our pedagogical workshop demonstrates how to use content advisories to foster constructive discomfort in academic or professional settings.”

Dr. Meghen Jones, also a professor of Art History in the School of Art and Design, will chair the session Ceramics and the Global Turn. This panel will consider ceramics and globalization from the early modern period to the present, focusing on ideologies, production systems, and networks of exchange.

 Childers obtained her doctoral degree in South Asian Art History from the University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA) in 2011. She teaches classes in Indian Art, Non-Western Photography, Global Asian Contemporary Art, and Feminist Art History. With interests that include colonial/post-colonial studies, feminist art, and the intersection of science and art, her current research centers on representations of the opium trade in colonial South Asia and the constitutive role of such images in the emergence of a modern, robust, visual public sphere in the subcontinent.

In recent years, she has expanded her focus to include the intersection of pedagogy, social justice, and the Global South. As part of the Social Justice Teaching Collective at Alfred, she has worked to help fellow faculty teach about race, class, and gender in a global context.

Johnson centers her teaching and scholarship on learning and behavior in social situations and applications to social justice. She received her doctorate in Social Psychology and the Teaching of Psychology from the University of Nebraska - Lincoln in 2012. She is focused on how the scholarship of teaching and learning intersects with theory and research on the classroom as a social space. She teaches classes in social psychology, gender and sexuality, principles of learning, behavior modification, and research methods and statistics.

Her research and teaching both draw on current research on interpersonal and intrapersonal factors influencing learning, such as identity development, metacognition, self-awareness, systemic inequality, and reflective writing. Increasingly, those interests have converged in leadership and participation in social justice-oriented professional development for faculty and staff, teaching collectives, and research initiatives.


Jones, assistant professor of Art History and director of Global Studies, teaches courses on the histories and theories of ceramics, material culture, design, and East Asian art history. Jones’s research on ceramics, craft, and modern Japanese art in international perspective has been published most recently in the proceedings of the International Committee of Design History and Design Studies Conference (University of Barcelona, 2018), the exhibition catalog Hands and Earth: Ceramics from the Horvitz Collection (University of Miami, 2018), and the journal Design and Culture (2017).

She is currently co-editing the book manuscript Ceramics and Modernity in Japan (Routledge, expected publication 2019). Her research has been supported by grants and fellowships from the Japan Foundation, the Association for Asian Studies, the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures, the Fulbright Foundation, and others. She received a PhD in the History of Art and Architecture from Boston University and an MA in Industrial, Interior, and Craft Design from Musashino Art University, Tokyo.