People

Penn IUR is affiliated with more than 200 experts in the field of urbanism. Its Faculty Fellows program identifies faculty at the University of Pennsylvania with a demonstrated interest in urban research; the Penn IUR Scholars program identifies urban scholars outside of Penn; and the Penn IUR Fellows program identifies expert urban practitioners. Together, these programs foster a community of scholars and encourage cross-disciplinary collaboration.

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Affiliated PhD Student

Lee Ann Custer

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Doctoral Candidate, History of Art, University of Pennsylvania

About

Lee Ann Custer is a doctoral student in History of Art at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research interests include the urban vernacular built environment and modern architectural history. Before coming to Penn, Lee Ann worked on a variety of architecture and urban studies initiatives, including the BMW Guggenheim Lab at the Guggenheim Museum and Spontaneous Interventions: Design Actions for the Common Good at the American Pavilion of the 13th Venice Architecture Biennale. Additionally, she has worked for SO – IL architects in New York, as well as for museum planning consultants Lord Cultural Resources. Lee Ann holds a BA in History of Art and Architecture from Harvard University, where she graduated magna cum laude with highest honors. 

Faculty Fellow

Ken Lum

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Professor of Fine Arts and Director of the Fine Arts Undergraduate Program

School/Department

Areas of Interest

    About

    Ken Lum is Chair of the Department of Fine Arts in the School of Design. Prior to coming to Penn, Lum was Head of the Graduate Program in Studio Art at the University of British Columbia, Visiting Professor at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris, and Graduate Professor at the Milton Avery Graduate School of Arts at Bard College. He is co-founder and founding Editor of Yishu: The Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art. Lum was made a Guggenheim Fellow in 1999 and awarded a Killam Award for Outstanding Research in 1998 and the Hnatyshyn Foundation Visual Arts Award in 2007. He has served on the Board of Directors for the The PowerPlant (Toronto), Annie Wong Art Foundation (Hong Kong), Arts Initiative Tokyo, and Centre A (Vancouver). He was co-curator of Shanghai Modern: 1919-1945 and Sharjah Biennial 7. He recently co-curated Monument Lab: A Public Art and History Project in Philadelphia.

    Selected Publications

    Lum, Ken. 2016. “The Figure in the Carpet.” Catalog essay for the exhibition Wall to Wall: Carpets by Artists, curated by Dr. Cornelia Lauf for the Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland.

    Lum, Ken. 2009. “Dear Steven.” In Art School: (Propositions for the 21st Century), edited by Steven Madoff. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

    Lum, Ken and Hubert Damisch. 2008. Ultimo Bagaglio. Paris: Three Star Books.

    Lum, Ken. 1999. “Canadian Cultural Policy: A Metaphysical Problem.” In Conference 1: Inside Out: Reassessing International Cultural Influence. Wroclaw, Poland: Apexart.

    Penn IUR Scholar

    Marina Peterson

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    Associate Professor of Performance Studies, School of Interdisciplinary Arts, Ohio University

    Areas of Interest

      About

      Marina Peterson is Associate Professor of Performance Studies at Ohio University’s School of Interdisciplinary Arts. An anthropologist, her work focuses on practices and processes of city making. Her research has explored multi-scalar dimensions of urban space through the study of sensory, sonic, and embodied processes ranging from musical performance to planning and labor. She has conducted ethnographic research in Los Angeles, Singapore, and Appalachian Ohio. Her work has appeared in Anthropological Quarterly, O-Zone: A Journal of Object-Oriented Studies, Space and Culture, Journal of Popular Music Studies, and Urban Anthropology.

      Selected Publications

      Peterson, Marina. 2013. Sound Work: Law, Labor and Capital in the 1940s Recording Bans of the American Federation of Musicians. Anthropological Quarterly, 86(3): 791-824.

      Peterson, Marina, and Gary McDonogh, eds. 2012. Global Downtowns. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.

      Peterson, Marina. 2010. Sound, Space, and the City: Civic Performance in Downtown Los Angeles. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.

      Peterson, Marina. 2010. “Garden, City, World: Los Angeles’ Late Twentieth Century Multicultural Arts Festivals.” In The Politics of Cultural Programming in Public Spaces.  Robert Gehl and Victoria Watts, eds. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

      Peterson, Marina. 2007. “Translocal Civilities: Chinese Modern Dance at Downtown Los Angeles Public Concerts.” In Deciphering the Global: Its Scales, Spaces and Subjects, 41-58, Saskia Sassen, ed. New York: Routledge.

      Faculty Fellow

      Mark Stern

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      Professor and Kenneth L.M. Pray Professor of Social Policy and History

      Co-Director, Urban Studies Program

      Principal Investigator, Social Impact of the Arts Project

      School/Department

      Areas of Interest

        About

        Mark Stern is Professor and Kenneth L.M. Pray Chair in the School of Social Policy & Practice and Co-Director or the Urban Studies Program. He is also is founder and principal investigator of the Social Impact of the Arts Project (SIAP), a research group at Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice. Since 1994 Stern had led project-based inquiry, with support largely by external private and public funders, that conceptualizes culture and the arts as integral to social wellbeing and develops methods for measuring the impact of this sector on community life in Philadelphia and other U.S. cities. Stern holds a Ph.D. in history from York University in Toronto, Canada and a B.A. from Reed College in Portland, Oregon.

        Selected Publications

        Stern, Mark and Susan C. Seifert. 2017. The Social Wellbeing of New York City’s Neighborhoods: The Contribution of Culture and the Arts. SIAP Research Report.

        Stern, Mark. 2011. Age and Arts Participation: A Case against Demographic Destiny. National Endowment for the Arts monograph.

        Stern, Mark and Susan C. Seifert. 2014. Communities, Culture, and Capabilities: Preliminary Results of a Four-­City Study. SIAP Research Report.

        Stern, Mark and Susan C. Seifert. 2013. Cultural Ecology, Neighborhood Vitality, and Social Wellbeing—A Philadelphia Project. SIAP Research Report. 

        Fellow

        Lily Yeh

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        Global Artist and Founder, Barefoot Artists

        Areas of Interest

          About

          Lily Yeh is Global Artist and Founder of the organization Barefoot Artists. Her expertise is in community healing and building through the arts. Yeh was Professor of Painting and Art History at the University of Pennsylvania from 1968 through 1998. She is a founder of The Village of Arts and Humanities in North Philadelphia where she worked as Executive and Artistic Director from 1968 to 2004. Yeh’s mission at Barefoot Artists is to use art as a transformative power to foster community empowerment, improve the physical environment, promote economic development, and preserve indigenous art and culture. Her ventures at Barefoot Artists have led her through North America, Europe, Africa, China, and India. Using art as a medium for social revival and change, she has positively influenced many impoverished communities worldwide.

          Selected Publications

          Yeh, Lily. 2011. Awakening Creativity: Dandelion School Blossoms. Oakland, CA: New Village Press.

          Yeh, Lily. 2011. “Painting Hope in the World.” In Dream of a Nation: A Vision for a Better America, edited by Tyson Miller, designed by Kelly Spitzner.

          Yeh, Lily. 2011. Creativity Blossoms in the Great Migration. Yes! Online Magazine, November. 

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