Department of Art History and the College
The cross-cultural encounter between European Christianity and the art and religion of the Kingdom of Kongo from the 15th to the 18th century is the primary research focus for Cécile Fromont. Her work sheds light on the yet-to-be-written story of the interaction between early modern European Christianity and Central African art and religion, contemporaneous to the well-known encounter between Catholicism and indigenous cultures in the Americas. In doing so, it opens new perspectives for both the study of African visual culture as well as the understanding of the early modern period at large by pushing back the timeline of African art history and considering the contribution of Africa to the formation of the multicultural Atlantic world.
Fromont received her PhD in the history of art and architecture from Harvard University in 2008. Prior to joining the University of Chicago faculty, she was a postdoctoral scholar at the Michigan Society of Fellows and an assistant professor in the Department of the History of Art at the University of Michigan.
Fromont joined the University of Chicago faculty in 2010.