Associate Professor of Northern Renaissance and Baroque Art
Art History

Ashley D. West, PhD


Ashley West is an art historian of the early modern period, 1400-1700, with a particular expertise in the history, practice, and theories of printmaking.  Her interest extends to cross-cultural encounters between the Holy Roman Empire and its neighbors across Northern and Central Europe, rival empires, and outposts globally. She studies processes of cultural transmission and the dissemination of knowledge, as well as occasions for artistic exchange through travel and portable objects, pilgrimages, warfare, global trade and exploration, and early collecting practices. 

In her teaching she regularly incorporates on-site learning opportunities in the Print Study Room of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Mütter Museum, the Wagner Free Institute of Science, and Temple’s Special Collections of rare books. 

West currently is the Vice President of the Historians of Netherlandish Art. She has been a fellow with the international research project on “BildEvidenz. History and Aesthetics” at the Freie Universität in Berlin, and her research has been supported also by the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts (CASVA) and Andrew Mellon Foundation, among others. 

Her project on Hans Burgkmair and the Visual Translation of Knowledge in the German Renaissance reevaluates notions of the German Renaissance through the prints, drawings, and paintings of Hans Burgkmair the Elder, a contemporary of Albrecht Dürer. She has published on early etchings; history painting and the German sense of the past; and early representations of peoples from the coast of Africa and India. She is currently working on the materials and technologies of sixteenth-century Augsburg as a site for negotiating the global and the local in everyday experience.

PhD, Art History, University of Pennsylvania
MA, Art History, Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art
BA, Humanities, Yale University

Selected Work

West, A.D., with graduate students (2023). "Printmaking | Worldmaking" exhibition. Berman Museum,          Ursinus College.

West, A. D. (in progress). Hans Burgkmair and the Visual Translation of Knowledge in the German
. London; Turnhout: Harvey Miller / Brepols.

West, A. D. (2018). "Hans Burgkmair and Conrad Peutinger: Reevaluating the Artist-Humanist 
     Relationship." In W. Augustyn, & M. Teget-Welz (Eds.), Hans Burgkmair—Neue Forschungen, Vol. 44
     (pp. 45-67). Passau, DE: Dietmar Klinger Verlag.

West, A. D., Cashion, D., & Luttikhuizen, H. (Eds.). (2017). The Primacy of the Image in Northern
     European Art, 1400-1700
. Leiden: Brill Press.

West, A. D. (2017). Preserving Destruction: Albrecht Altdorfer’s Etchings of the Regensburg Synagogue
     as Material Performances of the Past and Future. In A. D. West, D. Cashion, & H. Luttikhuizen         (Eds.),The Primacy of the Image in Northern EuropeanArt, 1400-1700 (pp. 284-300). Leiden: Brill     Press.
West, A. D. (2013). Albrecht Dürer, Hans Burgkmair and the Practice of Early Etching. Print Quarterly,
(4), 379-395.
West, A. D. (2010). Between Artistry and Documentation: A Passage to India and the Problem of
     Representing New Global Encounters. In L. Pericolo, & A. Nagel (Eds.), Subject as Aporia in Early
     Modern Art
(pp. 87-114). Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing Limited.