Jessica Gerschultz is an Associate Professor in the Department of African and African-American Studies at the University of Kansas. Her research examines modern art, gender and craft, and feminist art history and methodologies. Jessica was an American
Council of Learned Societies Fellow in 2016 for the writing of her first book Decorative Arts of the Tunisian École: Fabrications of Modernism, Gender, and Power (Pennsylvania State University Press, 2019). Her current book project Fiber Art Constellations traces transregional networks of artists across sites in the Arab world, Africa, and former Soviet-bloc countries. Jessica has published in Under the Skin: Feminist Art and Art Histories from the Middle East and North Africa Today (Oxford University Press, 2020), The Journal of Modern Craft (2020), The Art Salon in the Arab
Region (Beiruter Texte und Studien, 2018), ARTMargins (2016), and The International Journal of Islamic Architecture (2015). She was a subject advisor for the MoMA anthology Modern Art in the Arab World: Primary Documents (Duke University Press, 2018) and has published essays in exhibition catalogues, including Gorgi pluriel, edited by Nadia Jelassi in 2018. She serves on the board of AMCA, the Association for Modern and Contemporary Art of the Arab World, Iran, and Turkey.
As the entrepreneurial co-founder of the Société Zin, a modernist design company, Safia Farhat (Tunisian, 1924–2004), contributed to the visual aesthetics of civic space during the formative period of Tunisian socialism and state feminism. Jessica Gerschultz introduces Farhat’s key role in sustaining a mural tradition for Tunisian modernists.