Dr. Cheryl Finley is the Inaugural Distinguished Visiting Director of the Atlanta University Center Collective for the Study of Art History & Curatorial Studies. She is the author of Committed to Memory: the Art of the Slave Ship Icon (Princeton UP, 2018), awarded the Mr. and Mrs. Raymond J. Horowitz Book Prize for the best book on the decorative arts, design history, or material culture of the Americas published in 2018. Dr. Finley’s work has appeared in numerous academic and popular publications, including Aperture, Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art, American Quarterly, Art Forum, and Small Axe; in the co-authored publications My Soul Has Grown Deep: Black Art from the American South (Yale University Press, 2018), Teenie Harris, Photographer: An American Story (Carnegie Museum of Art, 2011), and Diaspora, Memory, Place: David Hammons, Maria Magdalena Campos- Pons, Pamela Z (Prestel, 2008); and in catalog essays on the artists Berenice Abbott, Terry Adkins, Löis Mailou Jones, Lorna Simpson, Hank Willis Thomas, Carrie Mae Weems, and Deborah Willis.
Together with Heike Raphael-Hernandez (Würzburg) and Leigh Raiford (Berkeley), she was awarded an American Council of Learned Societies Collaborative Faculty Research Fellowship (2015–17) for the interdisciplinary project Visualizing Travel, Gendering the African Diaspora. A specialist in the art market, Dr. Finley’s current research examines the global art economy, focusing on the relationship among artists, museums, biennials and migration in the book project, Black Market: Inside the Art World. Her scholarly endeavors have been supported by the Ford Foundation, the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art; the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research, Harvard University; the Alphonse Fletcher, Sr. Fellowship; and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. On leave from Cornell University, where she is an Associate Professor of Art History, Dr. Finley is also a Visiting Professor at the Visual Identities in Art and Design Research Centre at the University of Johannesburg and a member of the Advisory Committee of the Getty Research Center’s African American Art History Initiative.
A prize-winning author, widely-published academic and supported by some of the most respected scholarly institutions throughout the world, Dr. Finley is a specialist in the art market, currently researching global art economy.