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Renata Holod
University of Pennsylvania
Fax: 215-573-2210
History of Art
University of Pennsylvania 3405 Woodland Walk
Philadelphia, PA, 19104
United States
Renata Holod received her Honours B.A. in Islamic Studies from the University of Toronto, her M.A. in the History of Art from the University of Michigan, and her Ph.D. in Fine Arts from Harvard University. She has conducted archaeological and architectural fieldwork in Syria, Iran, Morocco, Central Asia, Turkey and Ukraine. She completed an archaeological/ethno-historical survey on the island of Jerba, Tunisia. Supported by a Getty Collaborative Grant, she lead a team engaged in the analysis of the grave goods of a medieval kurgan from the Black Sea steppe. She has co-authored and edited several books including: City in the Desert: An Account of the Archaeological Expedition to Qasr al-Hayr al-Sharqi, Syria, Harvard Middle Eastern Monographs XXIII/XXIV, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1978; Architecture and Community: Building in the Islamic World Today (Aga Khan Award Series), Millerton, NY: Aperture, 1983; Modern Turkish Architecture, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1984, 2nd ed. Istanbul, 2005; The Mosque and the Modern World, London: Thames & Hudson, 1997; The City in the Islamic World, Handbook of Oriental Studies 94, Leiden: Brill, 2008; An Island through Time: Jerba Studies, I (Journal of Roman Archaeology Supplementary Series 71), Portsmouth, RI: Journal of Roman Archaeology, 2009. A monograph The Last Kurgan: A Thirteenth Century Prince’s Burial in the Black Sea Steppe is in preparation. Renata Holod is the Curator of the Near East Section at the University Museum. She co-curated the September 2010–June 2011 exhibition “Archaeologists and Travelers in Ottoman Lands.” It opened in October 2011 at the Pera Museum, Istanbul under the name “ Osman Hamdi Bey and the Americans.” She served as Convenor, Steering Committee Member, and Master Jury Chair of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture. She was member of the Scientific Committee for the Fondation Max Van Berchem, Geneva. She is Past - President of the Historians of Islamic Art Association (HIAA). She was elected to the Board of Trustees of the Ukrainian Museum, New York in 2011, and Chair of the Board for 4 years, 2014-2017. She was Clark Professor at Williams College and the Clark Institute in 2002. In 2004, the Islamic Environmental Research Centre honored her with an Award for outstanding work in Islamic Architectural Studies. In 2010 she received the Provost’s Award for Distinguished Ph.D. Teaching and Mentoring and was named College of Women Class of 1963 Term Professor in the Humanities.
Sub Areas
Central Asian Studies
Iranian Studies
Maghreb Studies
Middle East/Near East Studies
Geographic Areas of Interest
All Middle East
Central Asia
Archae: Settlement Patterns
Archit Hist: Bldg Practics, Waqf Documents
Islamic Period Archaeology
Arabic (intermediate)
French (advanced)
German (intermediate)
Persian (advanced)
Russian (advanced)
Spanish (intermediate)
Turkish (elementary)
Uzbek (elementary)
Ukrainian (native)
PhD | 1972 | Fine Arts | Harvard U
The Making of Sectarian Space: Ibadi Jerba and the Shape of Its Settlement Recovering Rayy: Erich Schmidt’s Excavations of the late 1930s at Rayy, and their Contribution to the Study of the Material Culture of Medieval Iran