School of History

Dr Hannah Williams


Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow



I am an art historian of early modern France. I joined QMUL in 2015 after five years at the University of Oxford as a Junior Research Fellow at St John’s College and a Lecturer in History of Art. I did my undergraduate degree at the University of Sydney and my Masters and PhD at the Courtauld Institute of Art.


Research Interests:

My research focuses on the visual and material culture of 18th-century France and artistic communities in Paris. My first book, Académie Royale: A History in Portraits (2015), is an anthropologically inflected study of the inner workings of this pre-eminent art institution and the social lives of its members.  I’m also writing a book with Katie Scott called Artists’ Things, a material study of objects once owned by 18th-century artists.

As a Leverhulme Fellow, I’m working an a research project called Artists and the Church: Religion, Art, and Parish Life in 18th-Century Paris, investigating the crucial and vastly underexplored subject of religious art in this period. I’m also exploring the cultural geography of the Paris art world in a digital mapping project called Mapping Paris.

  • The Paris art world
  • Early modern artistic communities
  • Portraits and self-portraits
  • Religious art and architecture
  • History of art institutions (e.g. Académie Royale, Louvre)
  • Maps and mapping




Articles & Essays