Dr Jeanne Nuechterlein



BA (Rice University), MA, PhD (University of California, Berkeley)

Jeanne Nuechterlein has taught at York since October 2000.  Her work centres on northern European art, primarily Germany and the Low Countries in the 15th and 16th centuries and its receptions in the 19th and 20th centuries, with further interests extending out to related geographical areas and periods. Her teaching and research investigates religious and secular imagery in the late medieval and early modern periods, particularly the cultural role of art for its makers, patrons and viewers. She is a member of York’s interdisciplinary Centre for Medieval Studies as well as the Centre for Renaissance and Early Modern Studies. Currently she is completing a monograph, Holbein and the Art of Science. She has written Hans Holbein: The Artist in a Changing World for Reaktion Books' Renaissance Lives series, to be published in 2020.



Jeanne’s research has addressed a number of themes, including the nature and functions of sacred and secular art, and how they have changed over time; the impact of the Reformation on the visual arts; comparison between different artistic media such as painting, sculpture, prints, illuminated manuscripts, embroidery, and tapestry; conceptualization of period divisions; the impact of patronage; word/image/rhetoric relationships; interactions between art and science; and the methodologies applied to northern Renaissance art.



Research group(s)




  • Collaborative Doctoral Partnership. AHRC-funded studentship with Dr Susan Foister at the National Gallery, ‘Settings and subjects in early Netherlandish painting’ (2017-20)
  • Collaborative Doctoral Award. AHRC-funded studentship with Dr Susan Foister at the National Gallery, London, ‘Shifting perspectives on German Renaissance Art’ (2012-2015)
  • Leverhulme Research Fellowship. 9-month research fellowship for ‘Fictionalized Histories of early Netherlandish art’ (October 2010-June 2011)
  • Kluge Fellowship, Library of Congress.  11-month residential fellowship for research on rhetorical concepts in the work of Hans Holbein the Younger (October 2005-September 2006)
  • British Academy Larger Research Grant. Research travel in France, Belgium, Switzerland, and Germany for her project on early Netherlandish art (July 2005-December 2007)
  • DAAD Research Grant.  Three-month fellowship for research in Berlin to study the historiography of early Netherlandish art (July-September 2003)


In collaboration with Dr Susan Foister at the National Gallery, London, Jeanne co-curated the exhibition ‘Strange Beauty: Masters of the German Renaissance’ (17 February-11 May 2014), which examined the dramatic changes in attitude towards German Renaissance painting over the National Gallery’s history, from its foundation in 1824 to the present.  For more on the exhibition and the collaboration, see http://yahcs.york.ac.uk/partnerships/the-national-gallery/.

Jeanne's work on the exhibition was the subject of an interview for the National Gallery's February 2014 podcast, Why German Renaissance art made the Victorians blanch.

Jeanne is currently part of a collaboration between York Art Gallery, the Bowes Museum and Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, with support from the National Gallery, London, to interpret a recently-acquired painting from the Bouts workshop, St Luke Drawing the Virgin and Child (http://www.thebowesmuseum.org.uk/en-us/visitus/whatson/stlukedrawingthevirginandchild.aspx). The painting will form the focus of an exhibition at York Art Gallery in Autumn 2019.


Jeanne would welcome enquiries from potential PhD candidates concerning any aspect of 15th- or 16th-century German or Netherlandish art or its later receptions, or for co-supervision on late medieval interdisciplinary topics within the Centre for Medieval Studies.

In Progress:

Jordan Cook, ‘Settings and subjects in early Netherlandish painting’ (co-supervised with Dr Susan Foister, National Gallery, London)

Amanda Daw, The role of iconography in the expression and promotion of Eucharistic piety in fifteenth-century York' (co-supervised with Dr Jeremy Goldberg, History)

Claudia Jung, 'Visual translations of Jerusalem in the Early Modern Netherlands' (co-supervised with Dr Hanna Vorholt)

Hilary Moxon, ‘The Stained Glass of the York Minster Chapter House’ (co-supervised with Dr Jane Hawkes)

Niko Munz, ‘Under the Same Roof: the Interior in Early Netherlandish Painting 1390-1520’



Nicola Sinclair, 'Nineteenth-Century British Perspectives on Early German Paintings: The Case of the Krüger Collection at the National Gallery and Beyond’ (co-supervised with Dr Susan Foister, National Gallery, London), 2016

Justin Sturgeon, ‘Text & Image in René of Anjou’s Livre des tournois, 1460: Imagining Chivalry and Court Culture in the 15th Century’ (co-supervised with Dr Craig Taylor, History), 2015

Zoe Dumelow, 'Visual Representations of Biblical Dreams in England, c.1200-1350' (co-supervised with Dr Tim Ayers), 2013

Lucy Allen, 'Reading and Visual Processing in Late-Medieval Devotional Texts' (co-supervised with Dr Nicola MacDonald, English), 2013

Holly James-Maddocks, 'The Scribes and Artists of Books of Middle English Literature in the Fifteenth Century English Metropolis' (co-supervised with Prof. Linne Mooney, English), 2013

Helen York, 'The Origins and Meanings of Hans Memling’s Landscapes’, 2011

Emily Richards, 'Body-Soul Debates in Late Medieval Manuscripts' (co-supervised with Prof. Jocelyn Wogan-Browne, English), 2009

Stephen Hanley, 'The Optical Concerns of Jan van Eyck’s Painting Practice', 2007

Elizabeth O’Mahoney, 'Representations of Gender in Seventeenth-Century Netherlandish Alchemical Genre Painting' (co-supervised with Dr Mark Jenner, History), 2006


Selected publications

Jeanne has also written book and exhibition reviews for Art History, Sixteenth-Century Studies Journal, Renaissance Studies, and The Art Newspaper.




  • The Rise of the Print in Europe, 1400-1800
  • Image Controversies and Iconoclasms
  • Bosch and Bruegel in Netherlandish Art


  • Interpreting Northern Renaissance Art
  • Numerous interdisciplinary MA seminars on a range of topics from the 14th to 16th centuries in the Centre for Medieval Studies and Centre for Renaissance and Early Modern Studies

External activities

Editorial duties

Deputy Editor for Art History (2017-22)

Invited talks and conferences

  • ‘Luther’s unexpected legacy for scientific prints’, British Museum (October 2017)
  • ‘Hans Holbein the Younger’s Art of Science’, Rice University (February 2017)
  • ‘The search for harmony in the Reformation: a mathematical interpretation of Holbein’s Ambassadors, Reformation colloquium, Getty Research Institute (February 2017)
  • ‘St Luke as artist in the 15th-century Netherlands’, Bowes Museum (December 2016)
  • Co-organiser with Juliet Simpson (lead organiser, Coventry), Susanna Avery-Quash (National Gallery, London) and Marjan Sterckx (Ghent), Visions of the North: Reinventing the Germanic ‘North’ in Nineteenth-Century Art and Visual Culture in Britain and the Low Countries, Compton Verney, with contribution ‘Barthel Bruyn and Hans Holbein’ to online spotlight exhibition https://visionsofthenorthconference.wordpress.com/barthel-bruyn/ (June 2016)
  • 'Letters from Germany: perceptions of German art and culture by Ralph Nicholson Wornum and Henry Cole, 1834-1872’, Kulturelle Transfers zwischen Großbritannien und dem Kontinent, Erlangen (October 2015)
  • ‘“The picture does not please me”: Cranach’s critical fortunes in Britain’, Strange Beauty exhibition conference ‘Primitive Renaissances: Northern European Art at the Fin-de-Siècle’, National Gallery, London (11-12 April 2014)
  • Co-organiser with Susan Foister, half-day academic workshop for Strange Beauty exhibition, National Gallery, London (March 2014)
  • ‘Curators in conversation’ lunchtime talk with Susan Foister for Strange Beauty exhibition, National Gallery, London (March 2014)
  • Co-organiser and leader with Susan Foister, full-day pre-opening colloquium for Strange Beauty exhibition, National Gallery, London (February 2014)
  • ‘The transition from “medieval” to “Renaissance” in the 15th-century Netherlands’, Transition in the Medieval World conference, York (May 2012)
  • ‘The potential impacts of Gossaert’s work on northern audiences’, workshop co-organised with Susan Foister and Amanda Lillie: ‘Artistic Interplay: A Workshop for “Jan Gossaert’s Renaissance”’, National Gallery, London (March 2011)
  • 'Imagined encounters in the Renaissance with Netherlandish art', Interdisciplinary Renaissance and Early Modern Seminar, Leeds (March 2011) 
  • 'Holbein, humanism and publishing in Basel', Basel, Summer School for international PhD students ‘Shaping Europe: Imagined Spaces and Cultural Transactions 1450-1700’ (September 2010)
  • 'Experiencing gold in early Netherlandish paintings', Historians of Netherlandish Art, Amsterdam (May 2010)
  • 'Reformation anti-typology', Renaissance Society of America, Los Angeles (March 2009)
  • 'Aesthetic visual experience as a metaphor for knowledge', New Directions in the Humanities conference, Istanbul (July 2008)
  • 'The value of early Netherlandish art', Denys Hay seminar, University of Edinburgh (February 2007)
  • 'Seeing rhetoric in the art of Hans Holbein', Library of Congress, Washington DC (September 2006)
  • 'In search of Holbein: the life of an elusive artist', Association of Art Historians, Bristol (April 2005)
  • 'The dangerous power of vision: depicting religious experience in pre-Reformation images', Reformation Studies Colloquium, Birmingham (April 2004)
  • 'The domesticity of sacred space in the fifteenth-century Netherlands', Defining the Holy: Sacred Space in Medieval & Early Modern Europe conference, Exeter (April 2003)
  • 'Portraying art patronage at the Burgundian court: Philip the Good's Golden Fleece vestments and the Ghent Altarpiece', International Medieval Congress, Leeds. Also session organiser, Medium and Manipulation: the Representation of Identity at the Burgundian Court  (July 2002)
  • 'Hans Memling's St Ursula shrine: the subject as object of pilgrimage', 37th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo (May 2002)
  • 'Interpreting Holbein: the problem of confessional identity in the 1520s', Sixteenth Century Studies Conference, Denver (October 2001)
  • 'Van Eyck to Holbein: origins and extensions of northern Renaissance art', College Art Association conference, New York (February 2000)

Contact details

Dr Jeanne Nuechterlein
Department of History of Art
Room V/240

Tel: 01904 323265
Fax: 01904 323427

Office hours: Thursdays 4:15-5:30pm, except weeks 2 and 6. If you need an appointment in these weeks, please email Jeanne.