Meghen Jones

Associate Professor
Art History
School of Art and Design


  • PhD, History of Art & Architecture, Boston University
  • MA, Ceramics Craft Design, Musashino Art University
  • BA, Japanese Studies and Fine Arts, Earlham College
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Meghen Jones is Associate Professor of Art History within the School of Art and Design. She teaches introductory courses on material culture and Buddhist arts; upper-level undergraduate courses on ceramics history, design history, and East Asian visual and material culture; and the graduate seminar Global Flows: Ceramic Art, Craft, and Design. Her teaching emphasizes the direct study of objects, and she has led student travel to museums and collections in the US, Canada, and Japan.

Her research focuses on the history of ceramics, modern art, and craft theory in Japan and in international perspective. She guest curated Path of the Teabowl for the Alfred Ceramic Art Museum (on view through December 29, 2021). Her publications include the chapter “National Treasure Tea Bowls as Cultural Icons in Modern Japan,” in The Construction and Dynamics of Cultural Icons, edited by Erica van Boven and Marieke Winkler (2021); the book Ceramics and Modernity in Japan (2019) co-edited with Louise Allison Cort, and essays on modern and contemporary ceramics in the exhibition catalogs Materiality: The Miller Ceramic Art Collection (2019)Vessel Explored/ Vessel Transformed: Tomimoto Kenkichi and his Enduring Legacy (2019), Hands and Earth: Contemporary Japanese Ceramics from the Horvitz Collection (2018), and O Pioneers! Women Ceramic Artists, 1925­–1960 (2015). Her 2017 article “Hamada Shōji, Kitaōji Rosanjin and the Reception of Japanese Pottery in the Early Cold War United States” appeared in Design and Culture, and her 2018 essay “American Potters’ Interventions with the Tea Bowl: Using Thing Theory to Problematize Cultural Appropriation” was published by the University of Barcelona in the International Committee on Design History and Studies conference proceedings book. She has translated poetry and texts from Japanese to English in Botsugo 50 nen Kawai Kanjirō: kako ga saite iru ima, mirai no tsubomi de ippaina ima [Exhibition of Kawai Kanjirō 50 Years after his Death: The Past is Blooming Now, and the Bud of the Future is the Abundant Present], and the Google Cultural Institute web project Made in Japan. 

Her work has been supported by grants and fellowships from the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission and the Northeast Asia Council of the Association for Asian Studies; the Japan Foundation; the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts & Cultures; the Fulbright Foundation; the Korea Foundation; the Japanese Ministry of Education; and others.


Courses Taught

  • Introduction to Material Culture
  • Buddhist Arts of Asia
  • History of Modern Design
  • Arts of Japan
  • Ceramics in Japan and Beyond
  • East Asian Design & Material Culture
  • Anime to Zen: Contemporary Japanese Visual & Material Culture
  • Modern and Contemporary Ceramics
  • History of Ceramic Art, Craft and Design: Global Flows
  • BS Thesis in Art History and Theory

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