Associate Professor and Director, Andean Working Group
Department: Art History
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1417
Keywords: Andean Region
Trained as an architect and architectural historian, Nair has conducted fieldwork in Bolivia, Mexico, Peru, and the U.S. Midwest, with ongoing projects in the South Central Andes. Her research examines the art, architecture, and urbanism of indigenous communities in the Americas, before and after the arrival of Europeans. Nair’s scholarship is shaped by her interests in material culture studies, cross-cultural exchange, hemispheric networks, landscape transformations, spatial theory, and construction technology.
Nair’s publications explore a range of subjects and regions such as the design of Inca royal estates, Tiahuanaco construction technology, colonial Andean paintings, and Brazilian urbanism. She has received research grants and fellowships from the American Philosophical Association, the Center for the Study of the Visual Arts (National Gallery of Art), Dumbarton Oaks, the Fulbright Institute, the Getty Foundation, and the John Carter Brown Library. Nair has recently completed At Home with the Sapa Inca: Architecture, Space, and Legacy at Chinchero (University of Texas, 2015). She has also published (with Jean-Pierre Protzen) a book entitled The Stones of Tiahuanaco: A Study of Architecture and Construction (Cotsen 2013). Nair’s article “Localizing Sacredness, Difference, and Yachacuscamcani in a Colonial Andean Painting” was honored by its selection as one of thirty-two ‘greatest hits’ articles published in the last hundred years of the Art Bulletin.