American Art and Architectural History
Melanee C. Harvey is assistant professor of art history in the Department of Art at Howard University. She earned a BA from Spelman College and went on to Boston University where she received her MA and PhD in American Art and Architectural History. Her dissertation, “Upon This Rock: Architectural and Material Histories of Two Black Protestant Churches, 1881-1969” documented and interpreted the architectural and visual histories of Metropolitan AME Church in Washington DC and the Shrine of the Black Madonna in Detroit, Michigan within the ideological arc of black nationalism. Her dissertation research was supported by a Smithsonian Predoctoral Fellowship in 2013-2014. Her research on the history of the Shrine of the Black Madonna mural was the singular art historical contribution to the 2016 anthology, Rev. Albert B. Cleage, Jr. and the Black Madonna and Child. She has also published extensively on Black Arts Movement artists including Faith Ringgold, James Phillips and African Commune of Bad Relevant Artists (AfriCOBRA). She is currently working on her book project which will explore the architectural history of the African Methodist Episcopal denomination, across material and visual artifacts. The book will provide a social material and visual history that recovers the architectural and aesthetic discourse among this community of African Americans throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries that permanently altered the American landscape.