H. (Haohao) Lu

  • Samuel H. Kress Fellow
  • Art History
  • Northern Renaissance


Titled "The Paradox of Desire: Image and Imagination of Eros at the Burgundian-Habsburg Court," my dissertation examines the articulation of desire in sixteenth-century Netherlandish visual culture. The paradoxical intertwining of unavailability and desire has long been a prominent feature of discourses on the erotic from late medieval courtly poetry to what is now often called “playing hard to get.” Drawing on a range of primary sources as well as important artistic monuments, I propose to examine that intertwining, and, in the process, trace the outlooks of erotic interest in the courts of Margaret of Austria (1480–1530) and Philip of Burgundy (1464–1524). Artists associated with these two patrons, including Jan Gossaert, Conrad Meit, and Joos van Cleve, repeatedly cultivated self-conscious, at times even contradictory, appeals to desire. Works by these artists offer a striking display of grasping hands, delicate skin, lustrous hair, suggestive poses, and frequently revealing outfits. My project treats these traits as more than just evidence of erotic interest and moral admonition. I aim to demonstrate that artists and patrons used the intertwining of desire and unavailability to instrumentalize erotic life in all its complexity at the Burgundian-Habsburg Court.

Teaching activities

Selected Teaching Activities:

Fall 2012 100-level: Introduction of Art History to Non-Majors, Indiana University Bloomington (Instructor of Record).

Summer 2012 200-level: Northern Renaissance Art, Indiana University Bloomington (Instructor of Record).

Curriculum vitae

2014 - present: Samuel H. Kress Fellow, LUCAS, Leiden University.

2013: Allen Whitehill Clowes Curatorial Fellow, Indianapolis Museum of Art.

2009 - present: Doctoral Student, History of Art, Indiana University Bloomington.

2008: MPhil, History of Art, Leiden University.

2006: BA, Chinese Literature, Beijing Normal University.

Key publications

Various entries for the early Netherlandish section of Online Scholarly Catalogue: Early European Collectionof the Indianapolis Museum of Art. Forthcoming. http://www.imamuseum.org/research/curatorial-research/featured-projects

Last Modified: 10-12-2015