Nearing the Clearing: A Panel Discussion on the Work of Nicole Ahland

   nicole install mirror


A casual panel discussion responding to the exhibition A Long Night’s Journey: Expectations and Clearings in the Photography of Nicole Ahland. Three scholars and curators bring their diverse interests and knowledge to enlighten and complicate these photographs. With backgrounds in Architecture, Contemporary Art History, and Theology/Curatorship, the panelists will present their insights into the exhibition – ranging from family histories to architectural phenomena, these works present an opportunity for the mind to wander through space, time, and emotion. A moderated discussion period, with audience participation, will follow. All are invited to a reception in the gallery space afterward, where light refreshments will be served and these works may be viewed with new eyes.

Paula Birnbaum, PhD

Associate Professor and Academic Director, MA in Museum Studies, USF

James Blaettler, SJ, PhD

Exhibition Curator, Director and Founder of Manresa Gallery

Steven Doctors, PhD

Adjunct Professor, Architecture, USF

Moderator: Kate Luscheck, PHD

Program Director, Art History/Arts Management, USF


USF Architecture Professor Steven I. Doctors giving a presentation on Nicole Ahland’s work.


Exhibition curator and Gallery Director, Father James Blaettler, S.J.


Paula Birnbaum, Professor in Museum Studies/Arts Management.


Gallery Reception

More information on Participants:

Moderator: Kate Lusheck, PhD

Program Director of Art History/Arts Management at USF 

Kate Lusheck specializes in early modern European art, works on paper, and curatorial practice. She received her PhD in the History of Art from the University of California, Berkeley in December 2000 and specialized in Northern Baroque Art. With a recent USF graduate Madeline Warner, she is curating the Manresa Gallery’s spring exhibition, Mapping “The East”: Envisioning Asia in the Age of Exploration, which opens March 22nd.


Paula Birnbaum, PhD

Associate Professor and Academic Director, MA in Museum Studies at USF

Paula J. Birnbaum is Associate Professor of Art History/Arts Management and Academic Director of the M.A. program in Museum Studies at USF.  She is the author of Women Artists in Interwar France: Framing Femininities (Ashgate, 2011). Her scholarship focuses on modern and contemporary art in relationship to gender and sexuality, as well as institutional and social politics. Recent projects include a series of essays on street art and global visual culture and a monograph on the 20th-century sculptor Chana Orloff who made her career in France and Israel.


Steven Doctors, PhD

Adjunct Professor, Architecture, USF

Steven I. Doctors, PHD maintains a project management practice (The CM+ Group, LLC) in the San Francisco Bay Area. He received a Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University and both a Master of Science and a PhD in Architecture from the University of California (Berkeley). He has been teaching architectural history, theory, and professional practice in the USF Department of Art + Architecture since 2007. His research interests include the history of architectural practice, design theory and methods, project management methodologies, and project delivery strategies. Steven is licensed as an architect and general contractor, and is a member of the American Institute of Architects, the AIA Practice Management Knowledge Community, the American Society for the Advancement of Project Management, and the International Project Management Association.


James Blaettler, SJ, PhD

Exhibition Curator, Director and founder of Manresa Gallery

Fr. Blaettler pursued studio art and language studies at Georgetown University, art and art education at Columbia University’s Teacher’s College and Art History at the University of Chicago. His doctoral work focused on Spanish Romanesque art. He has taught Art History as well as Art and Religion courses at Santa Clara, Fairfield and Fordham universities. He has curated exhibitions at Fairfield, Corpus Christi Church in New York City and St. Ignatius Church in San Francisco. He is the director of the Manresa Gallery.